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Kevin J.A. Thomas

Kevin J.A. Thomas

Associate Professor of Sociology, and Demography, and African Studies

211 Oswald Tower
Office Phone: (814) 863-2387


  1. Ph.D. (University of Pennsylvania)
  2. M.A. (University of Pennsylvania)
  3. M.D.A. (Western Michigan University)
  4. B.A. Honors (University of Sierra Leone)


Kevin J.A. Thomas is an Associate Professor of Sociology, Demography and African Studies at the Pennsylvania State University, and a faculty affiliate of Penn State’s Global and International Affairs program. He obtained his Ph.D. in Demography at the University of Pennsylvania and has a Masters degree from the same institution. After completing his doctoral work, he served as a post-doctoral fellow at both the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies and the Harvard Initiative for Global Health. Thomas’s research focuses on international migration, racial and ethnic inequality, children and families, as well as population and development issues in Africa. His work on these issues has appeared in several leading journals including Demography, International Migration Review, Journal of Marriage and Family, and Social Science Research. He served on the 2014 National Academy of Sciences panel on the integration of immigrants in the US, and on its 2015 panel on the educational success of young English language learners. He currently serves as a deputy editor of the journal Demography. Kevin Thomas is the author of two books; Diverse Pathways: Race and the Socioeconomic Incorporation of Black, White, and Arab-origin Africans in the US (Michigan State University Press) and Contract workers, risk, and the war in Iraq: Sierra Leonean labor migrants at US military bases (McGill-Queen’s University Press).