Heller Profiles

The Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University

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Ev Evnen

USA

MPP/MBA '15

Dual MBA/MPP candidate works to reduce persistent inequities

Ev Evnen focuses on LGBTQ and trans* rights

Note: Ev Evnen’s pronoun of choice is “they.”

Before coming to Heller, Ev Evnen worked for a health policy think tank, where they re-built and managed an underutilized database. While there, Ev realized the importance of policy in making effective change. They decided to come to Heller to learn how to best create and maximize such social change.

Ev wants to reduce persistent inequities. More specifically, they are interested in LGBTQ advocacy and trans* rights, and feel the skills they learned at Heller will be vital in their career. “For me, gaining these tools is incredibly important because the work I want to engage in has to be done,” Ev says. They feel that a lot of LGBTQ advocacy doesn’t sufficiently include an intersectional approach, including a focus on trans* rights. This is a gap that Ev hopes to fill through skills and tools learned at Heller.

The dual MBA/MPP is a unique combination that will provide Ev with two separate, but complementary, sets of tools to tackle issues they are passionate about. For example, the MBA program has helped Ev understand the context and rules that nonprofit organizations operate under continuously. Complementing this, they have also learned why these processes and rules exist in the MPP program.

Ev has enjoyed their time at Heller and is grateful for relationships formed with classmates and professors. “I go to school with people from literally all around the world and with different backgrounds. It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for all of us,” Ev says.

When reflecting upon their education at Heller, Ev says that it’s important for people who care about social issues to figure out where they will be the most effective, and, just as importantly, most happy. For Ev, that’s working in data management. In particular, they want to use data to better understand how inequity operates. Ev says data management is a powerful approach that not only demonstrates inequities, but can also suggest possible solutions.

While at Heller, Ev has been on the LGBTQ and diversity working groups, as well as the Diversity Steering Committee.

Knowledge Advancing Social Justice

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