Lovin hopes to explore the intersections between socioeconomic and gender equity, religious policy, and urban planning to find the policy areas that spark her interest.
Headshot of Hallie Lovin
Hallie Lovin

"College was a transformative experience for me," said Hallie Lovin, MPP Class of 2025, who recently earned her bachelor’s degree in public policy and women and gender studies with a minor in data science from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (UNC-CH). 

"Moving from a small town in North Carolina to UNC spurred me to grow, be independent, and meet people from diverse backgrounds. I first heard ideas like ‘intersectionality’ and ‘gender as a social construct’ at UNC-CH and remember not knowing what they mean but being so intrigued to learn more about them. My experience at UNC-CH challenged me to question my viewpoints and engage in new and sometimes uncomfortable conversations. I also saw how policies may disproportionately impact women because of our intersectional identities, and that piqued my interest in policy. I want to change those systems. I’m interested in exploring the connections between policy and equity and seeing how to use data to make informed decisions about policy.”

Throughout her undergraduate career, Lovin gained experience in equity work through summer internships and student organizations. 

"I participated in a club at UNC-CH called Helping Youth by Providing Enrichment (HYPE). “We would visit underserved communities in Chapel Hill and talk, hang out, and just get to know the kids—essentially, be a constant in their lives. They would look forward to us coming and spending time with them.”

Lovin also worked on social media for Gender Cool, based in Highland Park, IL. “I really liked their mission, which was working with trans youth and their families as well as corporations to spread positive awareness about trans people and their stories.”

Additionally, Lovin interned for the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) as a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) intern. "I primarily audited their website for inclusive language and portrayal of athletes. “It was a great opportunity to see how DEI functions in a corporation, which also connects to my long-term career goals.”

Lovin also served as DEI Committee Head for Sigma Rho Lambda, a Jewish sorority within the multicultural Greek council, as well as President of Hillel, a Jewish organization on campus at UNC-CH. “Both organizations combined my passion for gender equity with my passion for Judaism. Through those opportunities, I learned to advocate for myself and others."

Although Lovin had gained experience working towards equity-based solutions, she recognized that she needed to build up her quantitative skills—and she realized the Master of Public Policy program at Harris was the best way to do so. "Learning the data side of policymaking—understanding all the quantitative aspects of policy development—is critical. Harris' focus on those skill sets was very appealing." 

And the city of Chicago itself, she noted, is also a huge draw. "I love Chicago, and I'm excited to be close to my extended family in the suburbs. I would visit them every summer, and so the idea of being at a top school and in a city I want to explore even more  really appeals to me.”

Academically, Lovin said she is looking forward to exploring the intersections between policy and urban planning, gender equity, and other socioeconomic aspects of the world to find the policy areas that truly match her interests. "Eventually, I'd like to work for a consulting firm. I ultimately want to help people in a way that makes a visible, tangible impact."