Rachel Burns is a doctoral candidate in the Institute of Higher Education at the University of Georgia. She holds an MPA from the University of Georgia in Public Policy and Management and a BA from the University of Virginia. Her research focuses on state policies related to postsecondary access, affordability, and attainment for underrepresented students. She has worked on a diverse range of issues including the changing composition of the faculty workforce, graduate student debt loads, student outcomes at minority-serving institutions, accumulation of excess credits, and university technology transfer. Her dissertation analyzes the emergence of in-state residency tuition policies for undocumented students between 2000 and 2016, with a particular focus on the economic, political, and educational characteristics that influence the policymaking environment. She has presented this work, along with work on other collaborative projects, at conferences such as AERA, ASHE, AEFP, and AIR. She plans to defend her thesis in May 2018.