Sociology is the study of group life: its characteristics, changes, causes and consequences. It combines scientific and humanistic perspectives in the study of urban and rural life, family patterns and relationships, social change, intergroup relationships, social class, environment, technology and communications, health seeking behavior, as well as social movements.
A bachelor's degree and even more so, a Master's degree, in Sociology can help to open doors to all sorts of possibilities and experiences. Click on the tabs below to read actual testimony from current and past Sociology students.
Chelcee Thomas, M.A. - I have had the wonderful opportunity of interning with the organization Incarcerated Voices, which seeks to explore the circumstances and conditions of incarceration and those who experience it. Through the written stories and responses of the incarcerated persons, the organization hopes to foster insight into the prison system today. Essentially, the vision of Incarcerated Voices is to give a voice to the voiceless within the prison system, while impacting participant recidivism and positive engagement in reform initiatives. Given my personal and academic interests in mass incarceration, this internship opportunity has allowed me to immerse myself in the experiences and perspectives of incarcerated individuals, providing further insight the topic. These qualitative explorations into the circumstances and realities of incarceration immensely supplement the existing literature and my academic research. In my role with the organization, I review letters submitted by prisoners and offer my feedback to better serve their writing. Each letter includes a response to questions posed by the program, ranging from topics of alternative criminal justice systems, the causes of their criminal offending, to their views of the privatization of prisons. The prisoners strive for their responses to be used in quarterly newsletters distributed to the participants, organization, and general public. Additionally, I compose journal articles for these newsletters and generate potential questions to be posed to the participants. The internship thus far has served as a learning and development experience, both personally and professionally. I have gained a firsthand exploration of the issues faced in the prison system, going beyond the books and classroom understandings. The mission and goals of Incarcerated Voices are endeavors I am most passionate about and the opportunity to support such an effort has been most exciting.
Lyndsay Fluharty, a 2011 Masters’ graduate, is currently working at a health research and communication company that uses multimedia to create research-based health interventions. As Project Coordinator, she works with behavioral scientists on study design, survey development, and research procedures. She currently manages three projects in which she is responsible for participant recruitment, qualitative and quantitative data collection, focus group facilitation and usability testing for website and product development. She was recently awarded a CDC grant as Multiple Principle Investigator to study the use of a smartphone app that encourages college students to make healthy lifestyle decisions using real-time, location-based services technology.