Alison McClay is a senior research analyst within the youth development program area of Child Trends. She attributes her research interests in positive youth development, adolescent sexual and reproductive health, racial and health equity, and systems transformation to her educational and early career experiences as a middle school math teacher, volunteer community health and sexual violence prevention educator, college resident assistant, and out-of-school time practitioner. Alison is experienced in conducting and disseminating mixed-methods research, training and technical assistance, and project management. Her current work includes continuous quality improvement and evaluation of a goal-setting sexual health promotion program, a mixed-method study to assess the role of MIECHV-funded local program implementation to advance health equity in response to COVID-19, and project management for the National Research Center on Hispanic Children and Families.
Alison holds a Master of Public Health in Maternal and Child Health from Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where her master’s thesis used Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System data to analyze the association between school-based sex education and contraceptive use among U.S. adolescents. She also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from Appalachian State University. Prior to joining Child Trends, Alison held research positions at the Odum Institute for Research in Social Science, the Vermont Department of Health, and the North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute.