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Department of Sociology
Welcome to Sociology. Sociology is a fascinating and widely applicable field which teaches how to think about the way people create, maintain and are affected by social forces.

Critical thinking, problem-solving, written communication, oral communication and interpersonal skills are all cultivated by studying sociology.  We are a department that is excited about the opportunities that sociology has for students and welcome you to explore the world through a sociological perspective.

We are pleased to introduce you to our department. Please take the time to browse our website and learn about us!

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Undergraduate Academic Advising


Spring Term Drop-In Advising Hours

Monday-Thursday 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Kris Lucht Adams -


April 2016 Faculty Achievements 


Ginny Garcia-Alexander and Hyeyoung Woo (Sociology faculty) co-authored "Chapter 8: Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Infant Mortality, 1990 to 2004: Low Birth Weight, Maternal Complications and Other Causes" in Applied Demography and Public Health in the 21st Century, edited by Nazrul Hoque, Beverly Pecotte, Mary A. McGehee, to be published by Springer. 

Awards or Recognition

Bob Liebman, Sociology faculty, received PSU's 2016 award for Faculty Philanthropic Leadership for his "work with developing the Judaic Studies program, and building coalitions of support for its efforts inside and outside of the University."

Amy Lubitow, Sociology faculty, will receive an award for Faculty Excellence in Sustainability Research at an awards ceremony on May 25th, 3-5 pm during the Sustainability Celebration. This award is for research she's doing on spatial equality that has been supported by Emma Deppa (Sociology graduate student), Raquel Nasser (Sociology undergraduate), Nate Rochester (Sociology graduate students), Kyla Tompkins (Sociology graduate student) - and Dillon Mahmoudi & Santiago Mendez (both in Urban Studies),

Career Progression

Sasha Bassett, Sociology graduate student, successfully defended her Master's thesis "Positions in Progress: The Impact of Power on Tradespeople's Perceptions of Change" and was approved to continue on in the department's PhD program. 

Michelle Holliday, Sociology graduate student, successfully defended her dissertation "The Use of Anti-Bullying Policies to Protect LGBT Youth: Teacher and Administrator Perspectives on Policy Implementation" and will be starting a teaching position at Tufts University in fall. 

Community/Policy Engagement



Rachael Anderson, Sociology undergraduate, presented "Queer Inclusion/Exclusion? Felt Lived Experience in LGBTQ Welcoming Congregations" at PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium.

Sasha Bassett, Sociology graduate student, presented "Positions in Progress: The Impact of Power on Tradespeople's Perceptions of Change" at PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium.

Emma Deppa, Sociology graduate student, presented "Local Approaches to Regional Problems: Suburban Government Perceptions of Portland's Regional Housing Crisis" at the Pacific Sociological Association and PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium. 

Bob Liebman, Sociology faculty, presented "Mussar 2.0 as Modern Jewish Movement: A Field Report" at the April 2016 meetings of the Western Jewish Studies Association. 

Julius McGee, forthcoming Sociology faculty, presented the keynote address "What is Urbanization Sustaining?: Unpacking the Relationship between Urban Population growth and the Carbon Intensity of Human Well-being" at PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium. 

Joyce McNair, Sociology graduate student, presented "The Self-Reported Experiences of Houseless Individuals Who Have Transitioned Into Conventional Housing and What They Say Helped Them" at PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium. 

Nathan Rochester, Sociology graduate student, presented "On Both Sides of the Tracks: Light Rail and Gentrification in Portland, Oregon" at PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium.

Shah Smith, Sociology graduate student, presented "Contexts of Reception and Constructions of Islam: The Critical Importance of the Muslim Second Generation" at PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium.  

Prestigious Service

Bob Liebman, Sociology faculty, is a member of the Advisory Board that helped write a grant to the Greater Portland Jewish Foundation looking at life-stages and Jewish affiliation (Robert Lowe, OHSU, PI)

Amy Lubitow (Sociology faculty), Emma Deppa (Sociology graduate student), Sasha Bassett (Sociology graduate student), Kyla Tompkins (Sociology graduate student), Rachael Anderson (Sociology undergraduate), and Carly Orozco (Sociology undergraduate) organized PSU's Sociology Student Research Symposium.


Dara Shifrer, Sociology faculty, was selected and funded for the Institute on Statistical Analysis for Education Policy: Using Large-Scale Data to Study Mathematics Education and Outcomes in Washington DC by the American Educational Research Association. 

Alex Stepick, Sociology faculty, has been awarded a Fulbright Specialist grant during May and June to work at the Institute of Migration in Finland where he will lecture and give workshops on international migration, refugees, and migrant settlement. 

Sociology Graduate Student Organization (SGSO)

Mission: To provide opportunities for graduate sociology students to create a support network that reflects their unique needs and provide them with a voice within the sociology department. The SGSO strives to develop a support network by fostering relationships with department faculty members, and providing mentorship to incoming sociology graduate cohorts and undergraduate students, while also providing a voice through organization and participation in sociology department activities and projects. Working to build professional skills and encouraging advanced participation in department activities for its members, the SGSO is dedicated to sustaining an open and inclusive environment for all sociology graduate students.


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