Current Academy Interns

2020 Interns

This year, the National Academy of Social Insurance Internship Program will take place on a 100% telework basis.

Alexandra Allen, Carnegie Mellon University
Placement: National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare

Alexandra Allen is currently pursuing a master’s degree in public policy and management at Carnegie Mellon University, with a focus on health policy. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Alexandra earned her bachelor’s in public affairs from Seattle University. She has worked as a public benefits navigator for El Centro de la Raza, a community organization connecting mixed citizenship families with resources. Her interests include social determinants of health and the intersections of healthcare, immigration, income inequality, and social justice. She hopes to advocate for public health insurance expansion and improved access to health services for marginalized communities. As the inaugural Congressman Pete Stark Health Policy Intern, working at the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, her work with the senior health care policy advisor will include writing, research, and exposure to congressional health care legislative issues. 


Lillie Heigl, Syracuse University College of Law
Placement: Social Security Advisory Board

Lillie Heigl is an Eileen Sweeney Graduate Intern in Disability Policy who will be working at the Social Security Advisory Board (SSAB). Lillie graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism and a bachelor’s in international studies from the University of Missouri. Lillie is currently entering her final year of law school at Syracuse University College of Law where she is taking part in the Disability Law and Policy Program. Lillie is also pursuing her master’s of public administration at Syracuse’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and will graduate with her JD and MPA in May 2021. Lillie has a younger sister with an intellectual disability, which is what motivated her to pursue a career in disability policy. Lillie is interested in employment and access to higher education for people with intellectual disabilities, as well as the ways social policy programs can support independence of people with intellectual disabilities. Lillie is looking forward to working with SSAB and using her past personal and professional experiences to continue to advocate for people like her sister. 


Ta’Mara Hill, University of Minnesota
Placement: National Academy of Social Insurance

Ta’Mara Hill is a dual-degree student in human rights policy and public health at the University of Minnesota. She is working on her master of human rights and master of public health degrees, both concentrated in conflict, international security, and global policy. Ta’Mara is a Merton C. Bernstein Intern on Social Insurance placed at the National Academy of Social Insurance, where she will be focusing on health policy research, examining both U.S. and global health policies. As someone who hopes to build a career in U.S. foreign policy and intergovernmental affairs, she is passionate about ensuring that government policies reflect the needs and rights of citizens. She has worked in the nonprofit, for-profit, and education sectors, and has both domestic and international experience (working in both Australia and Greece). She has a bachelor of arts in sociology from Wiley College, and is a proud graduate of a Historically Black College. 


Ellie Kaverman, Indiana University
Placement: Century Foundation

Ellie Kaverman is a master of public affairs candidate at Indiana University where she studies policy analysis and health policy. She earned her bachelor of arts in journalism in December 2018. Ellie has a varied background in research and politics, including having worked as a finance assistant on a congressional campaign and as a policy intern at a juvenile justice nonprofit. For the past three years, Ellie has coordinated a project to identify, research, and pursue recognition efforts for hidden figures of Indiana University’s history. She is interested in policies and programs that work to uplift people, including unemployment insurance, Social Security, and Medicare and Medicaid. Her previous research has focused on the impact of Medicaid expansion on maternal mortality. As a Merton C. Bernstein Intern on Social Insurance, Ellie will work with the Century Foundation and its Bernard L. Schwartz Rediscovering Government Initiative. She will contribute to the Initiative's projects on child poverty and economic policy issues.


Humphrey Shen, University of Pennsylvania
Placement: National Academy of Social Insurance

Humphrey Shen is a rising senior at the University of Pennsylvania studying health and societies, with a concentration in health care markets and finance, as well as minors in legal studies and bioethics. At Penn, Humphrey is a managing editor at Penn Bioethics Journal and researches health care policy and innovation. He has previously worked at Benefits Data Trust, a Philadelphia-based non-profit, researching and analyzing federal and state policies to improve public benefits access. As a Merton C. Bernstein Intern on Social Insurance, Humphrey will work with the National Academy of Social Insurance on two projects involving workers’ compensation and the Economic Security Study Panel.


Sophie Sherman, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Placement: AcademyHealth

Sophie Sherman is a master of public health student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a focus in health policy. Sophie has worked for the Department of Veteran Affairs in Durham, NC, serving as a research assistant in their Health Services Research and Development division. In this role, her research efforts focused on veteran geriatric care and family caregiver support. Sophie also has experience interning with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society as a public policy intern. Some of her interests include health insurance access, the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and the evaluation of health policy through an equity lens. As a Rashi Fein Intern on Health Policy, Sophie will work with AcademyHealth on the Paradigm Project, an initiative working to improve the relevance of health services and policy research for decision-makers in government, health care delivery organizations, and communities.


Naomi Shin, Carnegie Mellon University
Placement: Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC)

Naomi Shin is a student at Carnegie Mellon University pursuing a master’s degree in healthcare policy and management. She has a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience and a background in elder care, volunteering to reduce the risk of hospital acquired delirium through the Hospital Elder Life Program at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. She also has experience in interpersonal violence prevention, serving as a two- term president for the student advocacy group and as an intern on the Green Dot Initiative team through University Health Services at CMU. As a Rashi Fein Intern on Health Policy, Naomi will be working with the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC) focusing on projects that address state Medicaid policies.


Izidora Skračić, University of Maryland-College Park
Placement: National Institute on Retirement Security

Izidora (Izzie) Skračić is a third-year doctoral student in maternal and child health at the University of Maryland - College Park, where she also teaches Poverty and Inequality in the U.S. to rising juniors and seniors. Originally from Croatia, with master’s degrees in human rights and humanitarian action, and work experience at the European Parliament, Izidora has been examining gender inequality in its various iterations for quite some time. Thanks to her experience in the U.S., her research has expanded to also include racial and ethnic disparities. As a Merton C. Bernstein Intern on Social Insurance, Izidora will work with the National Institute on Retirement Security (NIRS) to conduct research on the maximum income allowed to still qualify for Medicaid, resulting in a comprehensive reference document available to all. The placement is a great fit for advancing Izidora’s goal of working at the intersection of research, gender equality, and public policy.