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Meet our Alumni

PhD Alumni

Students of the highly regarded Human Development and Social Policy (HDSP) program at Northwestern's School of Education and Social Policy gain methodological and content expertise through a distinctive interdisciplinary approach.

Drawing from an array of outstanding resources — including an accomplished faculty, diverse research projects, multiple disciplines and numerous labs — students can tailor a concentration focusing on an area of specialization.

At the same time, they acquire skills and knowledge across a broad spectrum. The program incorporates wide-ranging disciplines from psychology to political science, sociology and economics as well as multiple research methods in quantitative, qualitative and computational realms.


Like the alumni you meet here, graduates of the Human Development and Social Policy program assume teaching and research positions in higher education or policy analyst roles in government, government agencies or independent research organizations.

In academia, HDSP alumni have joined the faculty at:

  • Cornell University
  • Brown University
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Duke University
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison

Graduates are especially well trained to become professors in other interdisciplinary programs in such areas as human ecology and policy studies or to bring an interdisciplinary perspective to traditional academic departments such as psychology, sociology or education.

In policy settings, graduates have assumed professional positions with the:

  • General Accounting Office
  • Rand Institute
  • Urban Institute
  • Mathematica
  • Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation (MDRC)
  • U.S. Senate or House of Representatives

Featured HDSP PhD Alumni 

As graduates go on to attain positions in academia and research, they find that the depth and breadth of their training allow them to communicate and collaborate across disciplines. Read some of our alumni's stories of how they approached their doctoral training and the outcomes they have realized.