MDRC’s Meghan McCormick Receives 2020 SREE Early Career Award


The Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE) recently announced the winners of the 2020 SREE Early Career Award, which recognizes early career scholars whose work has advanced rigorous research relevant to educational practice: Meghan McCormick from MDRC and Josh Polanin from the American Institutes for Research. McCormick and Polanin were selected from a competitive pool of candidates, all of whom are within seven years of receiving their postdoctoral degree.

Meghan McCormick completed her PhD in Applied Psychology with a concentration in quantitative analysis at New York University in 2015 and since then has been a Research Associate in MDRC’s Family Well-Being and Children’s Development Policy Area. She was awarded the Institute of Education Sciences’ Outstanding Predoctoral Fellow Award in 2016 and received a New York City Early Childhood Research Network Early Career Scholars Award in 2018. Prior to earning her doctorate, McCormick had been a research assistant at MDRC.

McCormick’s scholarship to date has been motivated by the desire to understand and promote practices and policies that can help close income- and race-based achievement gaps during the birth to third-grade period, using rigorous methods. Much of her current research projects, including a Research-Practice Partnership with Boston Public Schools, aim to use causal methods to learn about how family- and school-based interventions are (or are not) effective in closing skills gaps between lower- and higher-income children.

In its announcement, SREE quoted from Meghan’s nomination letter:

Meghan, across all points of comparison, is a superstar… Meghan is thoroughly impressive as a researcher with potential to influence education policy, programs, and practice. She is an exceptionally bright and promising early career scholar who is well on her way to establishing a clear trajectory of bringing high-quality research to strengthening existing early childhood education and school systems and to improving the lives of young children, especially those at greatest risk.