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Marissa K

- Research Program Mentor

MA candidate at Princeton University


Health Care Policy; Reproductive Rights, Health and Justice; Health Equity; Progressive Advocacy Campaigns


Hi! My name is Marissa and I am a graduate student at Princeton University's School of Public and International Affairs. I have focused my career on advancing health care access and equity, with a particular interest in reproductive rights, health and justice. Before graduate school, I worked for the national advocacy organization Community Catalyst, providing technical assistance to campaigns expanding health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. I've also helped elect pro-choice women to national office and advocated for reproductive rights with NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts. In addition to my advocacy and campaigns background, I also have experience in health care research and policy analysis. I have consulted for a state working to implement the Affordable Care Act and have helped policy experts advise state governments addressing COVID-19 and other policy priorities such as health equity, affordability, and coverage. Outside of my health care advocacy work, I like to play board games, make fun coffee drinks, and listen to jazz. Mentorship played a big role in helping me discover my love for health policy and advocacy, and I'm excited to collaborate with others who are passionate about this type of work!

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

What's Next for Health Reform or Health Equity?

Health care policy continues to be a hot topic in the political sphere because so many big policy questions remain. How can we get closer to universal coverage, and has the COVID-19 pandemic shifted how the U.S. thinks about this? Are there strategies to narrow existing health disparities? And is Medicare For All a solution to these challenges? I can work with you to dig into one of the many thorny questions of health care policy. This project could culminate in a policy memo, research paper, or Ted Talk style presentation.

Write Like a Policy Professional

While a research paper can be great, it is often not the primary medium used in policy and advocacy circles. Instead, shorter-form materials advance policy discourse, including memos, press releases, tweets, action alerts, and talking points. These products often demand a distinct set of writing skills. I can work with you to identify a policy topic you care about and apply your policy position to a suite of policy of materials often used in policy settings.

Designing a Progressive Health Justice Campaign

While the nuts and bolts of the policy itself are important for any issue-based advocacy campaign, just as key are the political considerations that shape its viability. This project can allow you to dig into both the policies AND politics of reproductive health care or another progressive policy issue you care about. Through a policy memo or campaign plan, you can explore how considerations such as coalitions, key stakeholders, grassroots mobilization, and other campaign capacities are just as important as the content of the policy itself when advocating for change.

Teaching experience

In both high school and undergrad, I worked closely with students as tutor for social sciences, economics, and policy courses. I also have experience in mentorship programming as a graduate student. At Princeton I served as a mentor for undergraduate students interested in health policy. I also served as a Peer Mentor for graduate students in my program.


Work experience

State Health and Value Strategies (2020 - Current)
Graduate Policy Fellow
Community Catalyst (2016 - 2019)
Program and Advocacy Coordinator
Princeton University and Maine Department of Health and Human Services (2020 - 2020)
Graduate Consultant


Northeastern University
BS Bachelor of Science (2016)
Political Science and Economics
Princeton University
MA Master of Arts candidate
Domestic Politics

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