Gillian Courtney

Gillian Courtney

  • Ph.D. Student


Gillian Courtney is a two-year VEST fellow and a Ph.D. student in the economics department at UVA. She researches diversity in higher education, with a special interest in women and underrepresented minorities in STEM. Her current work investigates the role of high school calculus instruction and student major decisions. Other working interests include peer and role model effects, student financing, and the growing student debt crisis.

Before coming to UVA, Courtney worked as a research analyst at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, where she worked in the consumer finance section of the research department. While there, she worked on several projects relating to consumer credit constraints and became an avid Eagles football fan.

In her free time, Courtney writes fantasy novels and reads even more of them. When not thinking about education, she can usually be found in the kitchen listening to Taylor Swift and trying new recipes.


B.A., Wellesley College, 2018


  • Higher education
  • Gender and racial diversity
  • STEM and economics
  • Student loans and labor outcomes