The Ohio Education Research Center — a collaborative of the John Glenn College and the Center for Human Resource Research — offers the Public Sector Data Internship Program for students interested in exploring careers in policy research and evaluation. Students receive instruction on data based methods to investigate policy problems, and work at a state agency in Columbus for the summer. The program allows students to discover the exciting work that the Ohio Education Research Center and its affiliate partners are engaged in, and gives students practical experience with theory they learn in college classes. This summer we have 5 interns participating in the program. To highlight their hardwork and dedication this summer, the OERC will be featuring each of our summer interns.

Our next intern of the week is Tiana Stussie. Tiana is going into her fifth year at Ohio State to earn a mathematics minor in addition to her major in Public Policy Analysis. Ms. Stussie is interning with the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services working to analyze data to better understand labor market trends. Her reflections on the internship are shared below:

My name is Tiana Stussie and I just finished my fourth year at The Ohio State University where I majored in Public Policy Analysis. Throughout my undergraduate career, I have learned a lot about issues facing the public sector and the government's role in correcting social inequities. My major inspired me to dedicate my career to advocate for social and health policies that would improve population health and allow communities to prosper. In today's day and age, data is becoming increasingly important in informing legislative decisions. Thus, I want to have this skill set in order to analyze and use data to promote more equitable policies.

The Public Sector Data Science Internship Program has given me the perfect opportunity to develop this skill set. Over the summer, I am working with the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services (ODJFS) to better understand supply and demand in the labor market. ODJFS is currently working remotely, but I am still able to connect with ODJFS staff through Microsoft Teams Meetings. All of the staff have been very supportive throughout the internship and have given me a lot of autonomy to work on the projects that align with my interests.

Currently, I am working with data from the Jobs and Labor Turnover Statistics (JOLTS) survey provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to make time series graphs and Beveridge Curves. A Beveridge Curve shows the relationship between the job openings rate and the unemployment rate. Economists use the Beveridge Curve to assess conditions in the labor market. Movement along the Beveridge Curve can indicate whether the economy is in a recessionary or expansionary period. Shifts of the Beveridge Curve can indicate increased or decreased matching efficiency in the labor market. For example, if the Beveridge Curve moves outward that could indicate decreased efficiency in the labor market. I used Tableau to create a dashboard that would allow users to compare Ohio's Beveridge Curve with the Beveridge Curves of other midwestern states. Outside of the Tableau dashboard, I have also been able to experiment with R and learn more about excel.

With the internship wrapping up in a few weeks, I am very excited to present my findings and feel truly honored that I was afforded this experience. I was able to learn so much from professionals in the field, staff at OERC, and my fellow interns. I would highly recommend this program to any student considering a career in the public sector.

© Ohio Education Research Center
Page Hall, 1810 College Road, Columbus, Ohio 43210

Keep up on all the OERC news and events by following us on Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.