OUR CHILDREN, OUR FUTURE

OUR MISSION

Creating an environment with the highest level of quality in child care and early learning for families and providers, utilizing global best practices.

The JAM Team Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization, headquartered in Erie, Pennsylvania.

The JAM (Joyce’s Amazing Miracle) Team was originally created as a support team for Dr. Joyce A. Miller during her battle with Glioblastoma, a deadly form of brain cancer. As part of her post-surgical recovery, Dr. Miller transformed her JAM Team into a foundation under her non-profit corporation, the Northwest Institute of Research, which manages The Child Care Works (CCW) subsidized child care program for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, operating as Early Learning Resource Center (ELRC) Region 1, serving Erie, Crawford, Mercer, and Venango Counties.

The Driving Force


The JAM Team will be a driving force in realizing Dr. Miller’s vision that all parents should be able to go to work every day knowing that their children are cared for and receiving the best early childhood education and child care possible, preparing them for grades K-12 and beyond.



State-of-the-Art Early Childhood Education Center & More


The JAM Team will accomplish this vision through a number of initiatives, ranging from providing funding to supplement gaps in the Child Care Works program to assisting needy families with scholarships to assist with their child care co-payments, to the establishment of the Miller Family Miracle Center, as a state-of-the-art early childhood education center designed to operate 24/7, utilizing global best practices, in her hometown of Erie, PA. For more information about the Miller Family Miracle Center, please click here.



Northwest Institute of Research


The JAM Team is a part of the Northwest Institute of Research (NWIR). More information about NWIR can be found here.

Dr. Joyce A. Miller, Ph.D.

FOUNDER

Dr. Joyce A. Miller, Ph.D. was a renowned sociologist, researcher and one of Pennsylvania’s leading experts on early childhood education. Joyce passed away on December 25, 2020, her 70th birthday, after a two-year battle with Glioblastoma, a rare form of brain cancer.

Joyce believed that affordable, high-quality early childhood education was a key part of community development and workforce readiness. She founded the JAM Team Foundation to draw attention to the importance of high-quality early childhood education in the development of our future workforce and to help realize her vision that all parents should be able to go to work every day knowing that their children are cared for and receiving the best early childhood education and child care possible, preparing them for grades K-12 and beyond.

Joyce graduated from Edinboro University in 1971 and earned her master’s and Ph.D. degrees in sociology from Kent State University in 1982. In 1980, Joyce established the KeyStone Research Corporation (KSRC), a research and consulting organization, and served as its president. She also founded the Northwest Institute of Research, a non-profit research and social services corporation which manages The Child Care Works (CCW) subsidized child care program for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, operating as grantee for Early Learning Resource Center (ELRC) Region 1, serving Erie, Crawford, Mercer, and Venango Counties.

Joyce also had a long career in academia. She was a professor of sociology at Villa Maria College and Gannon University from 1978 through 1999. Additionally, she served as Associate Provost at Gannon University from 1995 through 1997.

Joyce was very active in the Erie community, serving on many committees over the years, including: Athena Powerlink, Erie Regional Chamber & Growth Partnership, Erie Women’s Fund, Manufacturer & Business Association, and SafeNet, to name a few.

Traveling was another passion of Joyce’s. She traveled the world and lived in Bangkok, Thailand, where she completed a three-month Peace Fellowship at the Chulalongkorn University through the Rotary Peace Center. She was also involved in People to People International, which took her on many different adventures. She also undertook the challenge of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro a few years before her brain cancer diagnosis.