Tran Le (JE ’19) is a political science major from Dallas, Texas. Her primary academic interest is in education policy. Her research interests include the school-to-prison pipeline and the relations between residential (socioeconomic) and racial segregation and education inequality. In her spare time, she enjoys dancing bhangra, watching romantic-comedy movies, and eating ice-cream.
For the 2017-18 academic year, Le is a Virtual Student Federal Service (VSFS) Intern with the U.S. Department of Education’s (ED’s) Office of Federal Student Aid. She examines financial literacy education efforts that improve the financial capability of students preparing for and enrolling in college, with the goal of reducing the knowledge gap between expected and actual when paying for higher education. Examples of her type of work include writing an article about current practices at institutes of higher education, creating PowerPoints for classroom lessons and ED presentations regarding financial aid, and helping the Senior Advisor write a policy proposal and other documents.
In the summer of 2017, Le interned at the New York State Education Department (NYSED) in their Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages (OBEWL), under the supervision of Khin Mai Aung, the Director of English Language Learner (ELL) Civil Rights and Policy. Le’s purpose was to help enforce NYS regulations and laws that protect immigrant students’ access to public education and programmatic rights of ELL students. She researched and wrote many policy memos, and in order to help shape OBEWL’s guidance documents for school districts across the state, specifically in the political climate post-presidential election, she also researched into other states’ guidance concerning Immigration Customs Enforcement’s presence on school grounds and anti-bullying laws.
Since the fall of 2016 academic year, Le has worked in the Office of New Haven & State Affairs in Pathways to Science, a STEM outreach program for middle and high school students in the local New Haven area, maintaining their student database.
During the 2016-17 academic year, Le was also a teaching assistant in a 1st grade math and science classroom at Wexler-Grant School, preparing materials, supporting small groups, and assisting with behavioral management.
In the summer of 2016, Le participated in the Bulldogs in the Bluegrass Program in Louisville, Kentucky, working at Neighborhood House, a family services organization in the west side. She was a counselor in their academic enrichment program for youth from low-income neighborhoods, aimed to prevent summer learning loss.