Lois Joy co-manages and leads Jobs for the Future projects that help low-skilled adults advance to family-sustaining careers, while enabling employers to build and sustain a productive workforce. The focus of her work is on quantitative and qualitative analysis of education and employment opportunities for under represented groups in the middle skills workforce. Her projects include an extensive report to the federal Departments of Transportation and Education on the education and labor force needs of the Transportation Industry, analysis of emerging middle-skill occupations in the Green Infrastructure Industry, research into the challenges and opportunities for women and underrepresented minorities in the STEM workforce, and evaluation of programs focused on linking low-skilled adults into middle-skill education and career pathways.
Dr. Joy has dedicated her career to improving the economic well-being of underserved groups with research, evaluation, and policy development on issues related to college and career readiness, access and support in community college education, transitions from college to careers, and the broadening participation of nontraditional groups in STEM fields. Most recently, she served as a PI for a National Science Foundation sponsored project that analyzed pathways to community college STEM education for women and underrepresented groups. She currently serves as an advisor to the NSF sponsored STEM Learning and Research Center (STELAR) and a reviewer for the Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering. In addition to NSF, her research has been supported by the Department of Education and nonprofit and corporate foundations and has been published in peer-reviewed journals, as chapters in books, and in the popular press. Dr. Joy holds a Ph.D in economics from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and a bachelor’s in political economy from The Evergreen State College.