Past Press Releases

For Immediate Release: March 17, 2011

Welfare-to-work programs are based on the principle that the best way out of welfare is to be placed in a job that will eventually provide stable employment and higher earnings. In this seminar on March 24th, using data on Detroit’s Work First program, Sari Pekkala Kerr will show that the nature of the job placement (temporary-help versus direct-hire) during the program is a crucial determinant for the success of that strategy. Dr. Kerr, a senior research scientist at the Wellesley Centers for Women, conducted this research in collaboration with David Autor (MIT) and Susan Houseman (Upjohn Institute for Employment Research).

Lunchtime Seminar Series programs are free and open to the public. Held Thursdays from 12:30 to 1:30 in the Cheever House Library, the seminars highlight the work of Wellesley Centers for Women researchers and program staff. For more information, call 781.283.2500 or visit

Since 1974, the Wellesley Centers for Women has been a driving force—both behind the scenes and in the spotlight—promoting positive change for women, children, and families. Work at WCW addresses three major areas: the status of women and girls and the advancement of their human rights both in the United States and around the globe; the education, care, and development of children and youth; and the emotional wellbeing of families and individuals. Issues of diversity and equity are central across all the work as are the experiences and perspectives of women from a variety of backgrounds and cultures.