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New School Grads Rock • Samantha Washburn-Baronie

Samantha Washburn-Baronie (shown here with Sen. Elizabeth Warren) attended The New School from 2007 – 2010 and graduated with a degree in Urban Studies. A native to Massachusetts, Samantha returned to her home state and began a career in government and politics. She currently serves as the Deputy Director of the Office of Economic Empowerment for the State Treasurer.

Samantha found her way to The New School because she desired opportunities for hands-on learning experiences and to be surrounded by other students looking to make a difference in their communities. While at The New School, she became increasingly interested in issues around economic security, particularly how the gender wage gap, sick leave policy, and access to childcare contribute to income disparities. Her classes and internships exposed her to the many ways that New Yorkers addressed forms of inequity.

After leaving The New School, Samantha worked at the Massachusetts State House until she became the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus (MWPC), a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to increasing the number of women involved in the political process at all levels. She also worked at Simmons College, where she was part of a team to help revitalize a state-owned parcel of unused land in the city of Boston for the combined use by a private college, public high school, and the general public.

Samantha currently works for Office of Economic Empowerment, a statewide agency created in 2015 to increase people's access to financial education and to support public policy that financially empowers all residents of Massachusetts. Activities include a pilot college savings account program for kids in Worcester, and financial education and salary negotiation workshops to help women address the gender wage gap.

Samantha feels that her academic background in Urban Studies uniquely prepared her for her career. "Urban Studies at The New School gave me a foundation that emphasized the importance of community organizing, a concrete understanding of municipal policy, and historical context of the social and political elements at play in modern society." We will be watching her work with great interest!

Office of Economic Empowerment

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