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Alumni Spotlight – Hanover Recruiting at University of Chicago

MattSellman_forcalpageUniversity of Chicago: Matt Sellman

In brief, what is your role at Hanover?

I’m a Senior Research Associate for Hanover’s K-12 and higher education practice areas. In this position, I work with my directors to interpret the research questions of school district and college/university clients. Based on these unique questions, I create custom, in-depth market research reports that inform clients’ decision-making processes. These reports often comprise insights gleaned from in-depth interviews with topic experts, quantitative data analyses, and program evaluations, among other methodologies. As a senior associate, I also help to bring newer researchers up-to-speed on some of our methodologies, particularly on projects requiring a significant amount of primary research.

Why did you decide to work at Hanover?

I became very interested in higher education policy and practice after spending a summer interning for UChicago’s Office of Federal Relations in Washington. In turn, the University of Chicago Career Advancement Office pointed to Hanover as a great way for me to gain more exposure to a wide range of issues facing education institutions and to help these organizations develop solutions. I was also looking for a company that was willing to utilize my research skills gained from a UofC education but also committed to helping me build out new skillsets. Hanover’s awesome professional development initiatives continue to support my professional growth.

In your opinion what sets Hanover apart from other organizations?

Hanover’s rate of growth and the opportunities that it provides its employees genuinely distinguishes the company from its peers. Hanover is quickly expanding and, therefore, constantly innovating and improving upon the way it serves clients. Much like a start-up, this dynamic culture means that we’re granted significant flexibility to shape our own path within the company. However, Hanover’s considerable size and strong reputation provide the stability of a larger organization.

Why should graduates at your alma mater be interested in working at Hanover?

My colleagues at Hanover very much remind me of my classmates at UChicago: wicked-smart, quirky,  and fun to be around. The interesting conversations and debates that I encounter at Hanover while in meetings, the lunchroom, or at happy hours often make me feel like I’m back in Hyde Park. Beyond this comfortable and stimulating culture, Hanover offers the opportunity to use all skills gained from the fantastic liberal arts education you received at University of Chicago. Researchers are expected to be jacks-of-all trades when completing independent research projects, often allowing them to flex quantitative, qualitative, and writing skills all in one project. Hanover lets you hit the ground running  and take full ownership of your work, something I know UChicagoans will highly value.

What is your favorite part of your job/the company?

In addition to the challenging nature of the research I conduct at Hanover, I love that my colleagues are some of the more interesting and engaging people I’ve ever met and worked with. Hanover boasts a great number of world travelers, from one of my colleagues who was recently teaching in Zambia to another who just wrapped up a PhD dissertation while living in Hungary. We also have DJs, electric bass players, and opera aficionados – working here is not boring. I also like that I’ve had the opportunity to take on leadership roles within Hanover outside of my research role, co-leading monthly roundtable discussions about trends in higher education and co-founding Hanover’s LGBTQ affinity group, Hanover Pride.


Hanover will be at the University of Chicago on January 16th, see you there! 


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