Mary
Visher
Senior Associate

Visher has many years of experience in public-policy research, spanning several sectors including education (K-12 and postsecondary), workforce development, and adult education. At MDRC, Visher has directed many projects in the Young Adults and Postsecondary Education (YAPSE) and K-12 Education Policy Areas, often those with a special focus on the intersection of workforce development and career/technical education. She often leads or serves as senior adviser on evaluations regarding career pathways and other similar strategies to help high school and college students prepare for success in both education and careers. In K-12 Education, for example, she currently works on a study of YouthForce NOLA, a project that promotes strong career/technical programs and work-based learning in New Orleans charter high schools. In YAPSE, she leads a project to study the effects of a recent state policy in Texas that changes how students whose placement scores are below the ninth-grade level are directed to adult education and workforce programs. Visher holds a doctorate in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.