President Joyce P. Jacobsen
Dr. Joyce P. Jacobsen began her role as the 29th President of Hobart College and the 18th of William Smith College on July 1, 2019.
Joyce P. Jacobsen earned her Ph.D. from Stanford University and M.Sc. from the London School of Economics, and graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with her A.B. in economics as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She began her academic career in 1988 as an assistant professor at Rhodes College before going to Wesleyan University in 1993. She earned full professor at Wesleyan in 2000, and was awarded an endowed chair as Andrews Professor of Economics in 2003. She was the recipient of the University’s prestigious Binswanger Prize for Excellence in Teaching in 2007. She began her work as an administrator in 2013 when she was appointed Dean of Social Sciences and Director of Global Initiatives at Wesleyan, and then Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs in 2015. She previously served as Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at Wesleyan University.
Coxe Hall, home of the President’s Office
An expert on labor economics, particularly the economics of gender, Jacobsen is the author of scores of journal articles, book chapters and book reviews exploring sex segregation, migration and the effects of labor force intermittency on women’s earnings, as well as the economics of wine and other collectibles. Her books include The Economics of Gender, Queer Economics: A Reader (co-edited with her former student, Adam Zeller, who started the project as a senior essay) and the textbook Labor Markets and Employment Relationships (with Gilbert L. Skillman).
Jacobsen has been a visiting professor at Colorado College and the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, where she held the Jantina Tammes Chair in Gender Studies. She has consulted for the World Bank, the ACLU and other nonprofit organizations. She served as editor of Eastern Economic Journal (2005-10) and on the editorial boards of a number of professional journals. Jacobsen was President of the International Association for Feminist Economics from 2016-17, served as a member of the American Economic Association Committee on the Status of Women in the Economics Profession, and is currently an elected board member of the Eastern Economic Association. During the past 20 years, she has been a member of several projects and working groups for the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.
Jacobsen is married to Bill Boyd, a former Visiting Scholar in the Quantitative Analysis Center at Wesleyan, who holds a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, an M.S. in computer science from the University of Memphis, and a B.S. in physics from Rhodes College. Jacobsen and Boyd have two grown children, Catherine Boyd and Kenneth Boyd. Jacobsen has two grown stepchildren, Will Boyd and Kara Boyd Nunn; and five step-grandchildren. Originally from Reno, Nevada, Jacobsen is the only child of William Jacobsen, Professor Emeritus of English at University of Nevada, Reno, an expert on North American Indian languages, including Makah, Salinan and Washoe, and Virginia Chan, an academic administrator who worked for the Basque Studies program at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Jacobsen succeeds Interim President Patrick A. McGuire L.H.D. ’12, who was appointed following the resignation of President Gregory J. Vincent ’83. She began her presidency on July 1, 2019. The Presidential Search, led by committee co-chairs and Vice Chairs of the HWS Board of Trustees Cynthia Gelsthorpe Fish ’82 and Andrew G. McMaster Jr. ’74, P’09, began in June of 2018. The Colleges consulted with the Chicago-based executive search firm, Isaacson, Miller, which helped identify candidates and coordinate the process that led to the selection of Jacobsen.