Dr. Tobe Photograph
Tobe, Erica Ph.D.


Assistant Professor & Graduate Director


  • Ph.D. Human Development and Family Studies, Michigan State University
  • M.S.W. Clinical Social Work, Michigan State University
  • B.S. Family Resource Management, Michigan State University

Areas of Interest

  • Financial Health and Resilience of families, specifically after the Great Recession
  • Un- and Underemployment and Work and Family Research
  • Family Policy as it relates to family finance


Dr. Erica Tobe is the Graduate Program Director and Assistant Professor for the Human Development and Family Studies department and an Extension Specialist in the area of financial education and homeownership education for MSU Extension. In addition, Tobe teaches an undergraduate course in Personal Finance, HDFS 238 and co-leads department financial education initiatives, including “Go for the Green” academic orientation sessions for incoming freshman and university-wide Money Smart Week events to raise collegiate financial education among Michigan State University students.

Funded in 2016, Tobe is the Principal Investigator (PI) on a $100,000 Rose Foundation for the Communities and the Environment grant to implement and evaluate financial capability and financial coaching in Kent & Muskegon Counties for MSUE. Also, Tobe is the co-PI on two housing education grants to implement pre-purchase, financial capability, and foreclosure counseling in Wayne, Macomb, and Clare counties, also with MSUE.

Dr. Tobe is the current co-chair of the eXtension Financial Security for All Community of Practice and the 2017 President Elect for the Michigan Extension Association for Family and Consumer Sciences. Prior to this position, Tobe served as an Educator and Program Leader with Michigan State University Extension.