I am a researcher and teacher with training in sociology and social work. I also have experience working in human service and non-profit organizations. I am currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. I also am a Research Associate at the Population Studies Center and a Faculty Affiliate at The Center for Africana Studies. I received a Ph.D. ('15) and Masters ('12) in Sociology from Duke University. I also hold a Masters Social Work ('09) with a concentration in Community Empowerment and Program Development from the University of Georgia. I am a 2014-15 Ford Dissertation Fellow, and was previously a Visiting Research Scholar in the Inequality and Social Policy Unit at the WZB Berlin Social Science Center.
My research is fundamentally concerned with inequality, specifically how individual, structural, and institutional factors help create, maintain, and reproduce inequalities. I am particularly interested in low-income families, child poverty, and inequalities across place, such as the high poverty in the U.S. South. My research has been supported by the American Sociological Association, the Ford Foundation, and the Center for Child and Family Policy at Duke University.
I was born and raised in Savannah, GA, and slowly made my way up North after previously living in Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia. I currently reside in Philly (though I am a Southern girl at heart), with my wonderful husband and adorable baby boy!