School of Social Work
Leah Gjertson is a PhD student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, School of Social Work. She works as a Senior Research Assistant at the Center for Financial Security. Her work centers on child welfare system outcomes and the economic security and well-being of low-income families and other vulnerable populations. Her dissertation research, which examines the economic circumstances and risk of intergenerational maltreatment among foster care alumni, is supported by a Doris Duke Fellowship for the Promotion of Child Well-Being. Prior experience includes working as a Project Assistant at the Institute for Research on Poverty, a Program and Policy Analyst for the Wisconsin Department of Corrections, Office of Research and Policy, a law clerk for the Department of Human Services Division of the Iowa Office of the Attorney General, and as a student attorney at the Middleton Center for Children’s Rights. Leah has a Masters in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Juris Doctor from Drake University Law School.
Research and Teaching Interests Child welfare, Poverty, Social Policy, Financial social work, Criminal justice, Program evaluation, Experimental research