Kendra Thompson-Dyck, PhD, serves as Director for the Office of Assessment & Research and is a Research Affiliate of the Southwest Institute for Research on Women (SIROW) at the University of Arizona. Her work supports institution-wide data collection and assessment to improve undergraduate student experiences and outcomes.
Kendra's diverse portfolio includes applied and scholarly research funded by the National Science Foundation, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, and the Department of Education. As a proud first-generation student, Kendra holds a MA and PhD in Sociology from the University of Arizona and a BA in Communications from Seattle Pacific University. Born and raised in a small northern Idaho town, Kendra now fully embraces the Sonoran desert as home.
Ned Tilbrook is Data Analyst in the Office of Assessment and Research and a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology at Portland State University, where he also received his Masters in 2020. His dissertation research uses nationally representative data to examine social reproduction in higher education, in particular the experiences of first-generation college students and qualitative stratification by college major with a focus on STEM. He has also researched college graduate underemployment using qualitative interviews and food access in Portland using GIS methods. His work has been funded by the National Science Foundation and published in Social Science Research and Sociology of Education.
Elisa Sperandio serves as Manager of Training and Project Development in the Office of Assessment and Research. She is also a PhD Candidate in the School of Geography, Development, and Environment at the University of Arizona. Her dissertation, based on ethnographic work conducted in Bologna and Torino, considers how Italian cities engage civil society in migrant reception and the production of urban welcome. Her research has been funded by the Social Science Research Council.
Originally from the hilly northeastern Italian town of Conegliano, Elisa arrived in the US in 2013, as a first-generation student and an international student. Before moving to Arizona for her doctorate, Elisa pursued a MA in geography at the University of Kentucky, and a BA in geography and political science from Concord University.
Lily Amador is a 2nd year master's student at the University of Arizona studying Higher Education in the department of Educational Policy Studies and Practice and intern with Assessment & Research for Fall 2023. She is from Los Angeles and graduated from California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) with her B.A. in Humanities and Communications with an emphasis on Ethnic and Gender Studies.
Lily is currently working in her second year as a graduate assistant for the President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program at Arizona. As a Ronald E. McNair scholar, she researched undergraduate research (UR) opportunities and the benefits associated with UR towards student’s career paths and academic success. As a Undergraduate Research Opportunities Center (UROC) Scholar, at CSUMB, she researched undergraduate experiences in distance learning and how to transition to equitable learning during COVID-19.