Luisa S. Deprez, PhD.

University of Southern Maine

Luisa Stormer Deprez has dedicated her career to supporting low-income women's access to education. She is one of our inaugural Advanced Scholars for her work on the project, Families Climb Together and a member of the NCSPP Advisory Board.

Dr. Deprez is Professor in the Department of Sociology and in the Women and Gender Studies Program as well as former Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Director of the Women’s Studies Program at the University of Southern Maine. From 2005-07 she was a Visiting Scholar in the Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy and Center for Social Policy at the University of Massachusetts, Boston: she has also been a Visiting Scholar in the Centers for Women at Wellesley College. Her scholarly and teaching interests center on the broad arenas of social welfare policy including the politics of policy-making; the impact of ideology and public opinion in policy; citizenship; poverty; the Capability Approach and higher education; and women, welfare and higher education.

She has published The Family Support Act of 1988: A Case Study of Welfare Policy in the 1980s (Edwin Mellen Press, 2002), co-edited Shut-Out: Low Income Mothers and Higher Education in Post-Welfare America (SUNY Press, 2004), and written numerous articles and book chapters about the restrictions of current welfare policy on low-income women seeking to access higher education. Most recently she was guest co-editor of a Special Edition of the Journal of Sociology of Social Welfare entitled “Beyond the Numbers: How the Lived Experiences of Women Challenges the ‘Success’ of Welfare Reform" and co-authored the lead article” Women’s Lives and Poverty: Developing a Framework of Real Reform for Welfare." Dr. Deprez’s work as an applied sociologist and expert on the Parents as Scholars Program in Maine, has provided the nation an example of effective state TANF policy in promoting real and permanent upward mobility for low-income families by supporting access to postsecondary education and college degree completion as effective mechanisms of upward mobility.

For more information about Dr. Deprez’s recent research on student parents visit: together