SHEEO Welcomes Kelsey Kunkle and Mónica Maldonado as State Policy Interns

The State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO) welcomes Kelsey Kunkle and Mónica Maldonado as state policy interns.

Kelsey Kunkle, State Policy Intern

At SHEEO, Kelsey will be focused on the state higher education finance (SHEF) project and will contribute to the development of issue briefs related to public higher education finance. Prior to joining SHEEO, Kelsey served in multiple student and academic affairs roles at the University of North Texas. In these positions, she primarily supported the academic transitions of community college transfer and returning adult students. Kelsey holds a B.A. in communication from the University of Maryland and an M.Ed. in college student personnel from Western Carolina University. She is currently completing her Ph.D. in higher education at the University of North Texas, where she also serves as a graduate research assistant.

Mónica Maldonado, State Policy Intern

At SHEEO, Mónica will primarily assist the work of the college closures project, an initiative in partnership with the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center to study postsecondary outcomes of students who directly experience closure. Additionally, she supports a number of policy and research pursuits, all focused on the use of data to inform decision-making. Before joining the team at SHEEO, Mónica served as a graduate intern with the Education Strategy Group, Institute for Higher Education Policy, and the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. Mónica also served as a graduate coordinator at the University of Maryland’s leadership and service-learning office. Prior to this, Mónica worked in recruitment for a D.C. public charter school open to 16-24-year-olds, offering free GED preparation and postsecondary credentials in high-demand fields. In addition, she worked as a trainer with the Posse Foundation. Mónica earned her B.S. in psychology from Berry College and M.A. in higher education from the University of Maryland, College Park. Currently, Mónica is working on her doctoral degree in higher education at the Institute of Higher Education at the University of Georgia, where she also serves as a graduate research assistant.


The State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO) serves the chief executives of statewide governing, policy, and coordinating boards of postsecondary education and their staffs. Founded in 1954, SHEEO promotes an environment that values higher education and its role in ensuring the equitable education of all Americans, regardless of race/ethnicity, gender, or socioeconomic factors. Together with its members, SHEEO aims to achieve this vision by equipping state higher education executive officers and their staffs with the tools to effectively advance the value of higher education, promoting public policies and academic practices that enable all Americans to achieve success in the 21st century, and serving as an advocate for state higher education leadership. For more information, visit