Karen and Joyce Koch
Karen Koch, 51, is a Michigan native and instructor in the business department of Mott Community College.
While teaching the internship classes, Karen spends her time helping students gain real-world experience and preparing them for their first jobs.
Karen graduated from the University of Michigan, Flint and has been teaching since 1986. She is a proud member of the Michigan Education Association.
Karen grew up in Flint as part of a Democratic union family. Her father, a UAW member, held jobs as a tinsmith and draftsman while her mom, a Teamster, worked as a payroll supervisor.
Karen has two grown children – a daughter, who graduated from the University of Michigan who works in manufacturing and a son – who is a classical guitarist at Wayne State University. Her husband works as a computer systems engineer.
Karen is active in Michigan politics, currently volunteering for Democratic Senate candidate Gary Peters and Gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer. She also served as a volunteer for President Obama’s reelection.
Joyce Koch, 71, is a retired social worker currently living in Lumberton, New Jersey.
Joyce was born and raised in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She earned a degree in Speech and Drama from Iowa State Teachers College. After a short teaching stint Joyce moved to Yonkers, NY, with her new husband and taught for another year before starting a family.
When her two daughters were school age she changed paths and became a psychiatric technician on a mental health unit in Northern Westchester County, later getting her Masters in Social Work from Fordham University.
In subsequent years she worked as the administrator of an anti-poverty program in Putnam County, on the Eastern Shore of Virginia as Executive Director of the Literacy Program, and as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity.
Joyce grew up the daughter of a school superintendent and has two daughters and two grandchildren of her own. She has been married to her husband Robert for almost 50 years. He is retired teacher and member of the New York State United Teachers (NYSUT), an AFT affiliate.