Sarah Jessen has over 15 years of experience as a researcher and educator. She has also worked for other major educational and social organizations, such as the Portland Public Schools, Southern Maine Community College, Rippleffect, Public Consulting Group, the Economic Policy Institute, the International Baccalaureate Organization, the Vera Institute for Justice, and New Visions for Public Schools. She has participated in all phases of national as well as local program evaluations, including the Cornerstone Literacy Initiative, the International Baccalaureate Organization’s Title I Grant Evaluation, and the Many Rivers program audit. Sarah has expertise in qualitative research as well as quantitative analysis. Her doctoral dissertation, which was a case study of parents and educators in the public school choice system in New York City, was awarded "Runner Up" for the American Educational Research Association Division L's Outstanding Dissertation Award in 2012. Her writings have been published in peer-reviewed journals. In addition to guest lecturing at Bowdoin College and New York University, Sarah has taught undergraduate/graduate coursework at the University of New England. She also has several years of classroom experience as well— as a third grade teacher in New York City, a teacher for students with special needs, and as a teacher trainer for the Lucy Calkins Reading and Writing Project. Sarah has a Ph.D. from New York University in Educational Leadership (policy analysis), an M.A. from Teachers College at Columbia University in Anthropology and Education, and a B.A. from Bryn Mawr College in English.