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Mengani (Amy) Yao


Mengani (Amy) Yao


Rappaport Institute for Greater Boston


Rappaport Public Policy Fellow



Rappaport Public Policy Fellows spend 10 weeks each summer serving within the highest levels of state and municipal governments in the Greater Boston Area. The program includes students from graduate and professional programs at local universities.

Graduate School
Boston University School of Social Work

Undergraduate School
Lehigh University

Tech Leng, Director, Planning and Community Development, City of Revere, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow and Tariana Little, CEO and Cofounder, EmVision Productions and former Rappaport Public Policy Fellow

Mayor’s Office of Food Access, Boston

Catalina Prada Valderrama, Outreach and Communications Director

Description of Fellowship
Amy worked with the Mayor’s Office of Food Access to promote food security in the Boston area and beyond. Specifically, Amy addressed underutilization of food-assistance programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). She conducted stakeholder interviews to understand the extent of and barriers to program utilization, and analyzed the impact of recent policy changes to SNAP and COVID-relief policies on program participation.

In addition, Amy led outreach efforts and offered recommendations to help destigmatize nutritional assistance programs and simplify the application process for residents.