My research program focuses on questions of political and economic equality, with a special focus on the experiences of marginalized groups with government and the representation of the interests of the poor in policymaking. My dissertation combines these interests into a study of rural individuals' attitudes and experiences in the realm of health care.  My work has appeared in the American Political Science Review, the Election Law Journal, Political Science Research & Methods, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 


Prior to coming to Vanderbilt, I earned my Master’s of Applied Politics degree at the University of Akron and my Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Murray State University. Outside of academia, I am a former congressional campaign staffer and fundraiser. 

Welcome to my academic website. I am currently a PhD Candidate in the Department of Political Science at Vanderbilt University.  Email me at with any questions or comments. 

PhD Candidate in Political Science - Vanderbilt University

Copyright: Michael E. Shepherd 2020