EDUCAUSE Connect Profile


Melissa Barnett

Data Governance Manager,
Georgia State University

Georgia State University
Atlanta, GA

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Throughout my career, I’ve worn many hats: sociologist, peer-reviewed journal author, evaluation researcher, data literacy leader, invited speaker, collaborator, presenter, instructor, data governance manager, steering committee lead, mentor, and guide. Data analysis and data governance, communication and relationship building, and higher ed are at the core of these roles. Access to higher education greatly transformed my worldview, supported my creative and analytic sides, and deepened my ability to problem-solve. At Harvard and MIT, I used data to answer leaders’ questions about academic programs and provide next-step recommendations. At Georgia State University, I support university leaders, data analysts, and data users in making decisions that affect the university, and the next generation, by ensuring our data that are known, accessible, trustworthy, and secure, as well as facilitating conversations across the university and training users how to handle data. Understanding data and harnessing it to advance the university is a truly collaborative effort - business units, IT, and institutional research/analysts - and I bring those together so we can determine how we might best do so.

In my personal time, I thoroughly enjoy a good fiction book, playing the piano, writing, and trying out the latest restaurants highlighted in Eater.

Professional Associations

2020 - Present

Association of Institutional Research
2015 - Present

Job History

Georgia State University
Data Governance Manager
Atlanta, GA, United States
November 2020 - present

Associate Director for Research and Evaluation
Cambridge, MA, United States
May 2015 - November 2020

Harvard College
Research Manager
Cambridge, MA, United States
May 2011 - May 2015


Florida State University