ABIGAIL HOLDSCLAW is an analyst with Public Impact, collecting and organizing data on a variety of topics as part of the data analytics team. Before joining Public Impact, she worked as a research assistant for the UNC Public Policy department, conducting qualitative and quantitative research on topics including the effects of diverse research teams on patenting outcomes and grant procurement, the impacts of Covid-19 on small businesses, and pharmaceutical innovation. Ms. Holdsclaw holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she double-majored in public policy and in interdisciplinary studies with a focus on race in the U.S. education system, and minored in social and economic justice. Her UNC activities centered on education-focused student organizations, including Civics in the Triangle and Students for Education Reform, leading her to volunteer in local elementary schools and engage with state policymakers.
Why I do this work: I think often about how different my life may have been had I not been placed in “gifted” classes, and how this, along with my race, affected teachers’ perceptions of my ability. For me, this highlighted the inequities in our education system, which should serve every student well. I want to use my position at Public Impact to influence change in the education system and create a more equitable society.