Pioneer Announces Recipient of First Annual Ruth and Lovett Peters Fellowship

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on

Pioneer Announces Recipient of First Annual Ruth and Lovett Peters Fellowship

Umut Dur, University of Texas Doctoral Candidate, to Support Institute’s School Choice Initiatives

BOSTON, MA – Pioneer is pleased to introduce Umut Dur as the recipient of the 2012 Ruth and Lovett Peters Fellowship. The Fellowship opportunity, announced in April 2012, was made available to current or recent graduate students with a passionate interest in education policy and strong entrepreneurial and analytic abilities.

Named in honor of Pioneer Institute’s Founder, the Peters Fellow is expected to develop a broad range of research and public policy skills and a thorough grounding in think tank and idea marketing. The Fellow will work with staff to gain skills in research, op-ed and press release writing, blogging, foundation grant management, event direction, and public speaking.

“Pete Peters’ career in private business and philanthropy was marked by many successes,” said Jim Stergios, executive director of the Institute. “Part of that success was due to his uncanny ability to spot talent—young, smart, driven talent. The Peters Fellowship is meant to do just that for Pioneer and for education policy. We’re excited to have Umut with us, because he brings the Greater Boston area a new set of tools and insights.”

As Pioneer’s 2012 LCP Fellow, Umut will conduct econometric modeling for Pioneer’s Center for School Reform on the financial impact of a statewide charter school cap lift, and on establishing school voucher and tax credit scholarship programs in Massachusetts. He has collaborated in the past on research focusing on school choice and tuition exchange programs in the US, and improving the teacher assignment process in Turkey. He is an advisee of

Massachusetts Institute of Technology economist Parag Pathak. A native of Fethiye, Turkey, Umut is a PhD candidate in Economics at the University of Texas at Austin (expected 2013), where he earned a M.S. in Economics. He holds a Master’s degree in Economics and a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Bogazici University, in Istanbul, Turkey. His research interests include market design, game theory, experimental economics and industrial organization.

Umut’s work experience includes teaching assistantships at the University of Texas and Bogazici University, an internship in the Antitrust Division of the Texas Attorney General’s Office, and a position as a foreign exchange trader with ABN Amro. Umut is a national rowing champion, having won two gold, six silver and 13 bronze medals in his native country.

The Ruth and Lovett Peters Fellowship is awarded annually, and is available to applicants with Master’s level course completion; preferably those with an MBA, MPA, MPP, other Master’s programs or those currently enrolled in a doctoral program. It will also be available to individuals who have completed service with Teach for America or have two years of experience in a charter school. To learn more about the program and to apply for the 2013 award, visit our fellowship webpage.


Pioneer Institute is an independent, non-partisan, privately funded research organization that seeks to improve the quality of life in Massachusetts through civic discourse and intellectually rigorous, data-driven public policy solutions based on free market principles, individual liberty and responsibility, and the ideal of effective, limited and accountable government.