Overview of the Claremont McKenna Policy Lab


The Policy Lab’s mission is to give students a firm foundation in how policy is made in the United States, to prepare them to be ready for work in legislatures, think tanks, non-governmental organization, to pursue graduate education in public policy, and to engage them in current policy research. The Lab’s public policy curriculum includes political science, economics, and practical application. Our teaching and research model of policy education we’ve has had tangible successes in integrating think tank practitioners in undergraduate education, in our students in finding jobs in policy-related fields, and in producing policy research at a professional level. Past partners include the Brookings Institution, RAND Corporation, Bipartisan Policy Center, and the American Enterprise Institute. Alumni of the program have gone on to policy jobs at Brookings, AEI, and other leading think tanks, as well top policy programs such as Harvard’s Kennedy School, Yale School of the Environment, and the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

About the Lab

Policy Lab course, offered each semester, allows students to learn and apply essential skills for policy writing, analysis and creation. Students apply their skills working with our many partners on real-world policy projects. Our course, which serves as the capstone for the Public Policy major, is divided into seminars and “staff meetings.” Seminars cover process, writing, applied methodology, and economic theory, all with an emphasis on the skills related to our current projects. The staff meeting is an exciting, collaborative discussion where students learn about policy, teamwork and working with professional policy clients.

In addition to the course, the Lab hosts various policy research projects managed by affiliated faculty assisted by students. The Lab employs two faculty members as directors, teams of student research assistants and managers, and an administrative assistant. Affiliated faulty of the economics and government departments also participate in the teaching and research activities of the Lab.

Assistant Director Job Description

Policy Lab is building its research and administrative capacity by hiring an Assistant Director to support the Directors in identifying and managing partnerships, projects, and research output; support research and teaching; and to support budgeting, grants, and institutional reporting.


Successful applicants will have experience and education in public policy, including qualitative and quantitative methods training, editorial skills, and the ability to work effectively as a member of a multidisciplinary team. Experience with data science tools such as R, Python, or Stata is preferred. Salary is commensurate with experience. An area of topical specialization is preferred but not required. It is also preferred that candidates have experience working with undergraduates in a professional or academic setting.

Educational Requirements

PhD, MPP, or MA in public health, policy analysis, applied economics, public administration, health policy, education policy, or other closely related fields. In addition, candidates with backgrounds in law or journalism and the requisite policy experience are also encouraged to apply. Candidates at the dissertation stage, who also have relevant professional experience and expect to complete a Ph.D. within 12 months, may also apply.

To Apply

Please include a cover letter that details professional and research experience, CV, professional references and writing sample with your application. Full consideration will be provided to applications received by June 4, 2021.

Apply here:  https://theclaremontcolleges.wd1.myworkdayjobs.com/enUS/CMC_Staff/job/Claremont/Assistant-Director-for-the-Policy-Lab_REQ-3021

For questions/concerns please contact the Policy Lab Administrative Assistant, Tami DeSalvio at Tami.DeSalvio@ClaremontMcKenna.edu

About Claremont McKenna College

Claremont McKenna is a highly selective liberal arts college located in Claremont; a beautiful college town nestled in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains roughly 35 miles from Los Angeles. CMC is part of a consortium that includes Pomona, Harvey Mudd, Scripps, Pitzer, and Claremont Graduate University. The newly created program in public policy is designed to prepare students for careers in public service or policy evaluation and is a capstone course for the public policy major.  CMC Policy Lab information can be located at https://policylab.cmc.edu

CMC is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer committed to equal employment opportunities for all applicants and employees complying with all applicable state and federal laws on the matter. CMC hires and promotes based on individual qualifications, without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, age, marital status, disability, medical condition, or sexual orientation. For CMC’s civil rights policies, see https://www.cmc.edu/civil-rights.