Doctoral Students

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Doctoral Students

    Dana Ponte

 Dana  is a doctoral candidate in Higher Education Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Washington, working with Professor Maresi Nerad. Her research is on the development of federal support for higher education on the basis of national defense in the Progressive and Cold War eras. Dana is a specialist on Russia and the Former Soviet Union. She graduated summa cum laude from  Clark Honors College at the University of Oregon with a bachelor’s degree in Russian Studies in 2002, and received her master’s degree in Russian and Central Asian Studies from Harvard University in 2005. She holds a senior management position at the National Council for Eurasian and East European Research and is based in Washington, DC.

     Amy Li

AmyLi (4)

 Amy is a 3rd year doctoral student in the Department of Educational Leadership, Policy, & Organizations–Higher Education Concentration. Her research is on public finance and accountability in higher education, specifically performance funding policy outcomes and implementation, impacts of economic downturns on state appropriations, and state funding for student financial aid. She works with Professor Maresi Nerad in the College of Education, and Professor William Zumeta in the Evans School of Public Affairs.

Amy graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Psychology, and earned a Master’s in Higher Education Administration, both from the University of Utah. Her previous professional experiences are in study abroad and in private-sector finance.


      Jim Pridgeon

Jim is involved in development and editing of research grants, publications and web content.  He is also involved with marketing and contributes to NIH sponsored research capacity-building efforts in Latin America by supporting grant writing and publications with the Latin American Brain Injury Consortium.  He has 30 years experience in research administration and has helped raise over $100 million for neuroscience research.


Roxana Chiappa

Roxana finished her master’s degree in Higher Education this past winter, and  she started her PhD in the same area during Fall 2013. Her research interests are in the doctorate education, internationalization of higher education and the strategies of innovation that countries implement to deal with the issues of poverty, equity and economic growth.

Roxana grew up in the north of Chile, Copiapó, and obtained her bachelor degree in Social Communication at the University of Santiago of Chile (USACH). Since 2007 until 2011, she worked as an institutional researcher in the Studies Department and Institutional Analysis at the same university.      

    Ziyan Bai

Ziyan earned her B.A degree in English, from Nankai University, China. She is currently a second-year Master student in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (Higher Education) at the University of Washington. Her academic interests lie in Chinese students’ experiences abroad, China’s innovation in policy for doctorate education, and the roles of Chinese scholars in the global academia.