Current Public Sociology MA Students

Benjamin Andres

benjamin andres Emphasis:
Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:

Sub-Cultures, Social Media, Asian Americans, Popular Culture

Education/Career Goals: I'd like to teach and research on the subjects of popular culture, sub-cultures, and new media overseas.

Before the Program:
I finished a BA in Sociology at CSU Sacramento in 2003. I took a little bit of time off before deciding to come back to school. I co-owed a record store, worked a bunch of jobs, and a lot of soul searching. Just before attending grad school I was a robot sitting in a desk scanning documents for 8 hours a day...Not cool. By night I was spinning records for Sacramento's underground music scene. Along with attending grad school at HSU, I'm currently producing music compositions. I like to stay current on music, fashion and culture.

Thesis:
I'm currently researching performing disc jockeys and their perceptions and attitudes toward new media.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
While researching schools to attend, I found that HSU Sociology has a teaching track. Any questions that I had regarding the Sociology program were cordially met with sincerity from faculty and staff. Also, Humboldt is beautiful. The ocean and the forest are steps away.

About HSU Public Sociology: I've always said that Sociology is what cool people study and teach. HSU Sociology proves me right. There are no squares here.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County: I like going to the beach and the forest. There's some good food spots out here too. The Robert Goodman Winery External Link is a cool spot to chill out and listen to music.

Rudolph Alexander Bielitz

Rudolph Alexander Bielitz Emphasis:
Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:
Crime, Law, and Deviance; Racial Inequality, Social Inequality, and Social Justice
Education/Career Goals: Once I graduate from HSU I plan on pursuing my PhD in Sociology, so that I may conduct my own research in topics that interest me such as, Crime, Law and Deviance, Racial Inequality, Social Inequality, and Social Justice. I also plan on pursuing teaching as well.

Before the Program: In December of 2012 I graduated from the University of California, Irvine (UCI) with two Bachelor degrees: Criminology, Law, and Society and Psychology and Social Behavior. After graduating from UCI I participated in two research laboratories on the UCI campus where I worked as a Research Assistant performing clerical duties in the Psychology and Social Behavior Department. Also, during this time I was working as a Behavioral Interventionist for an agency, which helps children who suffer from Autism. As a Behavioral Interventionist I practiced Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) Therapy, and it is through ABA therapy that I was able to help my clients to become more independent, and to be one step closer in being able to achieve full self-reliance.

Why HSU Public Sociology: I Chose HSU’s Sociology program after learning that there were a variety of resources available on campus, which allows graduate students to better learn academically not only in the classroom but also through using campus resources, via action projects, internships, and research assistantships. Although, I mainly based my decision on attending HSU because of the “teaching emphasis” that HSU provides for its graduate students, and also for its beautiful campus and the wonderful scenery that’s around Humboldt County.

Wendy Faye Brown

wendy faye brown Emphasis:
Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:
Social Inequality, Sexuality, Gender Studies, and Gerontology
Education/Career Goals: To complete my Masters and go on to teach Sociology on a Junior College level.

Before the Program:
I am a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley in Sociology. I had the honor of giving my undergraduate commencement speech alongside Robert Reich who I admire greatly for his work in social inequality.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
Upon my graduate school research I found most colleges had only an emphasis in social research. I was excited to find that HSU had an emphasis in teaching sociology as well. I am excited to graduate with actual teaching experience which I feel will be very helpful out on the job market.

Nicole Chappelle

nicole chappelle Emphasis:
Practicing Sociology

Research Interests:

Food Security, Food Policy, Food Justice
Education/Career Goals: To continue being a researcher influencing the lives of people in rural communities in the areas of health and food security.

Before the Program:
I received a bachelor's degree in Sociology from Sacramento State in 2011. I took off some time before considering applying for a master's degree, teaching Zumba classes and working odd jobs.

Placement:
My placement is with the California Center for Rural Policy (CCRP) and I will be designing a marketing and outreach plan for administering an HSU Student Food Security Survey. I will also assist in the analysis and summarization of the data.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
I decided to continue on with sociology because of my background in sociology, and I wanted more experience with research methods. I chose HSU because I am from this area and I love the climate, location, and the campus.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County: Arcata Community Forest External Link, Trinidad State Beach External Link, Strawberry Rock External Link, and Kimtu Beach External Link along the Trinity River External Link (in Willow Creek External Link).

Loren Collins

loren collins photo Emphasis:
Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:
Theory relating to global capitalism, globalization, world-systems, as well as networks, movements and the media
Education/Career Goals: I definitely don't rule out going on further in Sociology but at the moment investing in my career at Humboldt and maybe teaching some courses on the side seem like a great bet.

Before the Program:
I was a history major at Humboldt State University with a background working with at risk youth and teens on probation. After receiving my undergrad I became an employment counselor for the County of Humboldt and eventually took a job as a Career Adviser at Humboldt State. I jumped on the chance to further my education and chose Sociology!

Thesis:
I am still working on refining my thesis, as I am more of a part-time student, but I am looking toward something to do with global networks and movements or global capitalism and labor.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
I chose Humboldt because I live here with my wife and our two daughters; I love it here. I chose Sociology because I wanted a balance between academic theory and practice that makes a difference.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County: Trinidad External Link, Moonstone Beach External Link, Headwaters Forest External Link, Bar-fly Pub and Grub External Link Humbrews External Link and other cool indie restaurants.

Danielle Daniel

danielle daniel Emphasis:
Practicing Sociology

Research Interests:

Education/Career Goals: I would like to start a non-profit to educate people about the treatment of animals in labratories, and what alternatives are available.

Before the Program: I graduated from San Francisco State University with a degree in Sociology in 2010. Since then I have worked with Americorps, which gave me a lot of insight in the social work world. After that, I traveled solo to India to volunteer in a slum, teaching English to children. My experience in India was absolutely life changing. I ended up rescuing a pup from the crazy Indian streets, and brought him back to Humboldt with me. My boy Anicca (Ane-cha) is the best dog in the entire world, just to let you know ;). Since India I have been on a spiritual path, which has lead me to many breathtaking experiences. I love helping others and giving back to my community. I have been a CASA volunteer since January. I now feel ready to get back into school and start on my career.

Why HSU Public Sociology: I chose HSU because I absolutely love Humboldt, and I wanted to stay close to home. The Public Sociology program intrigued me because of the hands on experience in the community that I would be involved in. Learning about stuff in books is great, but being able to practice that knowledge in the the community is key to successfully moving forward in what I want to do.

Patric Esh

patric esh Emphasis:
Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:

Social Movements, Dispute Resolution

Education/Career Goals: Continue to teach. I would rather teach at a university or college, but I’m keeping my options open.

Before the Program:
Primarily finishing a B.A. in communication at HSU, but I was also working, spending time with Lindsey, my wife, playing with my daughters, working on something around the house, reading books about theory, talking to myself about theory because let's be honest who reads books about theory outside of class, reflecting on why I might be talking to myself, and watching movies.

Thesis: I am conducting research on the attitudes and perceptions of rural police officers regarding protest events. I want to know what they think about protests, protesters, and other related topics.

Why HSU Public Sociology: I wanted to continue my academic journey and sociology was an easy leap from the communication discipline. HSU had a sociology department with an emphasis in teaching, so I knew it would be a good option for me.

About HSU Public Sociology: Computers turn off for maintenance at 3am every day. Professors have officer hours, make your self a regular visitor, but don’t waste their time either. Alicia Persson, Administrative Support Coordinator, has candy; she also knows stuff so take the time to visit.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County: The Arcata Marsh External Link

Michael Griffey

michael griffey Emphases:
Practicing Sociology AND Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:

Access to Mental Health Resources
Education and Career Goals: Finish my M.A. at HSU, then pursue a PhD.  I would then like to work at a public policy and possibly teach Sociology on the side

Before the Program: I graduated from HSU in May 2014 with a B.A. in Sociology.  My senior capstone project was about rural sociology, with a focus locally here in the Redwood Coast Region.  As part of my capstone I was able to do a very rewarding internship at the Eureka Veterans’ Center. Since transferring to HSU in my Junior year, I have been working at the California Center for Rural Policy Prior to coming to HSU I held many jobs in many fields.  I also served in the U.S. Navy aboard a nuclear submarine.

Thesis:
I intend to do a systems analysis of suicide prevention and mental health treatment options in the Redwood Coast region.

Why HSU Public Sociology:  I was originally drawn to HSU because of the teaching track.  However during my undergraduate time in the Sociology department at HSU I really came to appreciate the opportunities that the Sociology program had to offer.  I had and still have access to amazing professors.  Being in a small class, professors know me by my first name.  I have more time to pick at these great minds than I would at a larger university.  HSU Sociology focuses not just on getting students to graduate, but they focus on what students are going to do after HSU.  I really like the department’s focus on professional development as well as community involvement.  The skills taught at the HSU Sociology department are skills that will help students get jobs. 

Favorite Places in Humboldt County:
Moonstone Beach External Link and Swimmers’ Delight External Link

Sarai Lucarelli

photo coming soon Emphases:
Practicing Sociology AND Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:
Positive environmental behaviors.
Education/Career Goals: I am considering advancing to a PhD, but at the moment I am just focusing on finishing this MA program at HSU and seeing what doors open for me afterwards.

Before the Program: I conducted research while working at a local domestic violence agency. My interests were abuse and nicotine use.

Placement: I am working with the Office of Sustainability on campus to assess our waste management system. Our basic goals are to reduce the amount of waste going into the landfill by diverting recyclables and compostable materials appropriately. My project Involves conducting a waste audit, analyzing results and highlighting problem areas, educating the campus public about the problems and conducting brainstorm sessions regarding potential solutions, as well as being a part of the design and implementation of these solutions as possible.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
Sociology combines theoretical knowledge with practical skills, with a real life focus of hopefully creating some positive change.

About HSU Public Sociology: I have nothing but positive remarks and gratitude for the support and wisdom shared with me through this journey so far.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County: Trinidad External Link

Stephanie Martinez

stephanie martinez Emphasis:
Practicing Sociology

Research Interests:

Arts as a way to promote social justice and social change in communities
Education/Career Goals: I want to create a non-profit organization and/or theater company with a focus on promoting social justice and change in different communities

Before the Program:
I received my BA in Social Sciences emphasizing Participatory Action Research from the University of Puerto Rico in 2013. While in Puerto Rico I conducted a 2 1/2 year research project with my fellow cohort, focusing on community theater and social change. I taught dancing, acrobatics and aerial silk and aerial hoop classes independently and was part of the National Circus of Puerto Rico.

Placement: I am conducting a program evaluation research for Dell' Arte International School of Physical Theater External Link of their Rural Residency Program.

Why HSU Public Sociology: I have a strong belief in "Praxis", and the Practicing Sociology emphasis offered the opportunity to collaborate with a local organization.

Hanna Menefee

hanna menefee Emphasis:
Practicing Sociology

Research Interests:

Food systems, food policy, and public nutrition
Education/Career Goals: I love applied research! After completing my MA I hope to continue in much of the same type of work I am currently doing, but at a greater level. Ideally I would like to learn about the best forms of rural food practices that can be applied to communities throughout the world.

Before the Program: I finished my BA in sociology from the City College of New York in 2011. During this time I got my first introduction to social research through my job at the Dominican Studies Institute. After graduating, I decided to take time away from academia and see the world. I lived in a handful of countries in South and Central American for about a year and a half working at non-profits and teaching English.

Placement: In my placement through the California Center for Rural Policy I work with the California Building Healthy Communities initiative External Link to provide support to the Food Policy Council of Del Norte County External Link as a research analyst. My ultimate product outcome is a report highlighting important demographic, economic, and food-system related information to help the council members and other policy makers in the county decide where to focus their efforts for community improvement. My thesis will incorporate my knowledge and experience from this work and explore rural food systems and how they are effected by the global food trade.

Why HSU Public Sociology: The HSU Sociology MA program was appealing to me because of the emphasis on applied/ practicing sociology. The HSU Sociology department puts a strong emphasis on real-world connections and contributions. The required 240-hour placement was also a big attraction for me - not only am I learning the facts in the classroom but getting the experience in the job field at the same time!

About HSU Public Sociology: Everyone in the HSU Sociology department has been nothing but welcoming and supportive since day one.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County:
Arcata Community Forest External Link, Saturday Farmers Market External Link, Northtown Coffee's External Link front deck on a sunny day!

Randy Prejean

randy prejean Emphasis:
Teaching Sociology
Education/Career Goals: I would like to teach Sociology and/or pursue further academic goals within the Sociological fields. I like to keep my options open for whatever opportunities the future may bring.

Before the Program: After a rather unsatisfying career in the banking industry, I finally completed my undergraduate work in Sociology at CSU East Bay in 2013. It was at this time the seeds of pursuing an advanced degree in the field of Sociological education began to take root and blossom.

Why HSU Public Sociology: There were several reasons that I choose HSU. First and foremost was the fact that HSU offered a program specifically tailored for a career as an educator within the field of Sociology. Secondly, the size of the campus and sense of welcome I felt when I first visited only further convinced me that HSU was the right choice. Finally, the Humboldt area, with its beauty and temperate weather, seemed like a great place to call home. I am looking very forward to plenty of new experiences.

Alina Randall

alina randall Emphasis:
Practicing Sociology

Research Interests:
Social Justice, social change, juvenile justice, race/ethnicity, social inequality, community organizing and youth activism
Education/Career Goals: I would like to work in the non-profit field to engage in community organizing (scholar activist). To be an ethnographer is a new goal, which may come if I pursue a PhD.

Before the Program:
I received my bachelor’s degree in Sociology from San Francisco State University (Fall 2011). Throughout my undergrad years, I worked with a few local non-profits, all centered on “at-risk” youth and advocacy. I also campaigned for local supervisors, participated in marches and protests, and enjoyed San Francisco life. I’m a Bay Area native, so I was always spoiled when it came to non-academic adventures and diversity in cultures. Family is essential to my being, so when not at school, working, or volunteering, I am more than likely enjoying life with my parents, sisters, and huge extended family.

Placement: My placement is with the Center for Applied Social Analysis and Education (CASAE). CASAE is contracted by the Humboldt County Probation Department to conduct evaluation services for two juvenile offender programs. In conjunction with CASAE, I also work with the Youth Disparities Reduction Collaborative with the focus of equitable treatment for all youth coming in contact with juvenile justice authorities in Humboldt County.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
I knew upon speaking with Executive Directors of non-profits I worked with, an MA was needed for my career goals and my sister was already attending HSU, so I applied to the program and decided to pursue the practicing track. I chose practicing sociology because I wanted to apply my sociological skills to the communities I come from and put into praxis what I feel passionate about.

About HSU Public Sociology:
Faculty are extremely supportive. I personally had the opportunity to work with both graduates and undergraduates and loved engaging with so many students. As far as the practicing track, 240 hours will fly by, so enjoy it and learn as much as possible from your placement. Your peers can be great resources for networking and finding a placement, as well as faculty. Alicia in the main office is great to know and chat with. If your interests can fall into other departments, do NOT hesitate to communicate with faculty outside of the Sociology department (get your tuition's worth!). The Criminology and Justice Studies faculty, and the Native American Studies Department, were crucial to my placement/project, so always ask questions to whomever you think may help guide your thesis or project.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County:
Arcata Community Forest External Link, Kimtu Beach External Link, Willow Creek Area External Link, Blondie’s External Link, Moonstone Beach External Link, Redwood Curtain External Link, Little Shop of Hers External Link, Old Town Coffee & Chocolates External Link, any place that has good music for dancing.

Janae Teal

hsu logo Emphases:
Practicing Sociology AND Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:

Gender, Sexuality, Juvenile Justice, Race, and Education

Education/Career Goals: I would like to be involved in curriculum analysis and/or education policy analysis.

Before the Program:
Before coming to HSU, I attended Washington State University where I received Bachelor’s Degrees in Sociology and English. While attending WSU I worked for the Office of Student Involvement as well as the Office of Student Diversity. I was very involved in campus activism and social justice within LGBT communities.

Placement:
I did my placement work with the National Center for Youth Law (NYCL) External Link. As a sociologist who is passionate about the systematic disadvantages that are faced by children in both the education and juvenile justice systems, I could think of no better organization that I would like to work with for my placement. I will be writing a thesis based on this work.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
I was first attracted to the fact that the HSU Sociology MA is a terminal Master’s Degree. I am still on the fence about whether I want to attend a PhD program, so this program has given me time to figure that out a bit. Additionally, I was intrigued by the option to get a Master’s in Public Sociology. I am a firm believer in taking the sociological (and research!) skills taught in the classroom, and applying them in the real world. I figured a Public Sociology program would be a great place to start!

About HSU Public Sociology: Everyone that I have worked with is so kind. Alicia (in the Sociology Office) is fantastic! She will make your grad school experience better—I promise! :)

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County:
Fern Canyon External Link (Outdoor Adventure) and Arcata Scoop External Link (Best Ice Cream. Ever.)

Lor Yang

lor yang Emphases:
Practicing Sociology AND Teaching Sociology

Research Interests:

Racial inequity, gender studies, food security, social ecology, rural development
Education/Career Goals: I am eager to continue with my education, with the goal of perhaps receiving my PhD one day. My pie-in-the-sky career goal is to work for either UNICEF or UNESCO.

Before the Program: I was on a pre-med track (cellular biology) until I took "Social Problems" on a whim at CR. My naïveté was replaced with a growing sense of disgruntlement and a new-found desire for praxis. I switched to a BA in Sociology and graduated in 2013. Afterwards, I took an academic year off to focus on some serious issues relating to my immediate and extended family. Essentially, I was fostering three displaced nephews and one displaced niece, adding up to a total of eight people living in a two-bedroom apartment.

Why HSU Public Sociology: Have you taken a tour of the locality?!? What a lovely place; we have the redwoods to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west...it's quite sad to know that many of the locals are of the "working poor" class. I feel motivated to stay here so that I can enjoy the environment and follow through with my belief in praxis as it pertains to the discipline of sociology.

Burke Zen

burke zen Emphasis:
Practicing Sociology

Research Interests:

Violence Prevention and Serial Genocide

Education/Career Goals: Hoping to enter doctoral program after completing the Master's program here.

Before the Program:
I was managing a university preparation program for international students, teaching English, coordinating an internship program and culture series assembly, and traveling.

Placement:
I am tentatively scheduled to do my placement with the Humboldt Teen Court Program External Link. My project is focused on developing evaluation instruments in terms of measuring violence prevention outcomes.

Why HSU Public Sociology:
I am interested in advanced training in the social sciences in preparation for work in community organizing and gang violence prevention.

About HSU Public Sociology:
People are generally hospitable and friendly.

Favorite place to see/visit in Humboldt County:
The back parking lot corner at Wildberries for the sunset view of Humboldt Bay.

Apply for the HSU Master's Degree in Public Sociology