Melinda Petre was a National Poverty Fellow at the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation from 2014 to 2015 and was mentored by IRP Affiliate Christopher Taber. Petre earned her Ph.D. in economics from the University of Texas at Austin. Her dissertation focused on the returns to cognitive and noncognitive skills in different labor market contexts, such as employer learning about these skills and skills as an explanation of the racial wage gap. She is interested in researching policies that help to reduce poverty and inequality by developing skills and closing gaps from an early age. Petre is currently a lecturer in economics at Dartmouth College.