Hodges headshot

Emerson Fellow

Samantha Hodges

18th Class, 2011-2012

Originally from St. Paul, Minnesota, Samantha graduated in 2011 from Wesleyan University with a degree in sociology and environmental studies, concentrating in public health. Samantha has worked as a social studies teacher in Minneapolis, welfare rights intern in East Harlem, hunger outreach worker in Middletown, Connecticut, and prison workshop leader in Cheshire, Connecticut. Samantha also spent five months traveling Switzerland, India, China and South Africa exploring organizations working in the areas of education, community building, and public health.

Field placement: Sacramento Housing Alliance

Sacramento, California

Samantha developed a primer on the Restaurant Meals Program (RMP), a statewide  hot meals option for elderly, disabled and homeless SNAP recipients. Through interviews with RMP clients, county welfare directors, advocates and participating restaurants, she put together a set of stories that shed light on the benefits of the RMP. After thorough review of food stamp regulations and analysis of her interviews, she also created materials to help counties expand or start their own RMP.

Policy placement: Poverty & Race Research Action Council

Washington, D.C.

Samantha researched school integration in early education and gentrification in D.C. She also helped organize the National Conference on School Diversity, a convening of advocates, educators, government representatives and policy makers working to increase diversity in the public school system.