Michael Mitchell

Michael Mitchell

'11 MPA
Policy Analyst
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Since August 2013, Michael Mitchell ’11 MPA has been a policy analyst with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP). Mitchell studies state support of higher education, criminal justice reforms, and corrections spending. CBPP is one of the nation’s premier policy organizations working at the federal and state levels on fiscal policy and public programs that affect low and moderate-income families and individuals. The Center conducts research and analysis to help shape public debates over proposed budget and tax policies, to help ensure that policymakers consider the needs of low income families and individuals in these debates.

While serving as a policy analyst, he is also in the program director of the State Policy Fellowship Program--also housed in the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities--a program that offers recently graduated masters students two-year fellowships to conduct research that tackles domestic policy challenges in areas like health care, taxes, anti-poverty policy, education, and criminal justice.

As a policy analyst, Mitchell is responsible for analyzing trends in state support of higher education and state criminal justice reforms and corrections spending. He provides state partners with technical support analyzing and researching state tax proposal and policy solutions.

 Prior to joining the Center, Mitchell worked full-time as a state policy fellow with the Washington State Budget and Policy Center, a state level non-profit, non-partisan research organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunity to low-income Washington state families. In his role, he focused on Washington state tax and budget policy decisions and how they specifically impacted young adults and people of color.

Mitchell earned his MPA from the Maxwell School in 2011 and his bachelor of science in political science and economics from the University of Connecticut.

Maxwell helped Mitchell determine how he would impact public policy. Mitchell stated, “Coursework in tax policy, primarily Len Burman's tax policy class, and state and local finance, taught by John Yinger, really impressed upon me the importance of tax and budget decisions in shaping the rest of the public policy landscape. From tuition costs at public colleges to the sustainability of roads and bridges to affordable childcare for working parents, budgets and taxes play a critical role in determining the quality of life for all of us.” As a Public Policy and International Affairs Fellow, Mitchell received a full scholarship to attend Maxwell, where he served as a teaching assistant for a graduate level statistics course.  

His advice to current students is to, “think critically about how the work you're currently doing as a student can help you find employment in the policy field you eventually want to enter. Use class projects as opportunities to build a portfolio of work that you can showcase to potential employers, unifying your work from various classes into a coherent narrative around a specific field can be highly beneficial.”