Sociology encourages you to ask critical questions about social issues and prepares you to become an agent of change. Recent graduates of our program are working in a range of positions in business, education, government, social services and law.
Curriculum & Courses
Student taps into passion for field research on May Term trip
Alexandra DeLaricheliere '14 found her passion for sociology while on a May Term trip to the Pacific island nation of Palau, where she was part of a team of students studying nutrition and health. When she returned from Palau, she worked with Dr. Chad Morris to expand on their field research on childhood nutrition. She and Dr. Morris co-authored a book on the subject.
Alex was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, and graduated with honors with a major in sociology and a concentration in anthropology. She's now in the applied anthropology graduate program at the University of South Florida.
Learning through service in Belize
Three years ago, Chelsea Schafer '18 learned a new language - American Sign Language. She grew to love sign language and the deaf culture, and an experience at her church further sparked her interest in this unique population.
"When a deaf couple joined our church, I realized I wanted to research how churches could minister to the deaf, a group that is normally forgotten about," said Schafer, a sociology major. In the spring semester of 2017, she studied in Ireland, where she researched how deafness and religious experiences interact. She also learned Irish Sign Language. Schafer hopes her research will equip churches to better minister to the deaf and hard of hearing populations.
Globalization and Health in Palau
Students traveled to Palau for an intensive learning course to learn about Pacific Island culture, see firsthand the influence of globalization on Palauan livelihoods and participate in ongoing community research that seeks to improve nutrition and food security.
Careers & Outcomes
A passion for service
Sarah Thompson has long wanted to serve others; that's part of what attracted her to sociology. While at Roanoke, she realized she could combine service and study by taking on an internship at Roanoke Refugee and Immigration Services. She then spent one summer working with children in Belize and another summer working with children in Ireland. Thompson graduated in 2011 with a major in sociology and a concentration in gender and women's studies. After graduation, she taught elementary school for two years in China. Thompson is now in Brussels in the University of Kent's graduate program in International Development.
Roanoke grads have gone on to prestigious graduate programs at schools like Washington and Lee, University of Virginia and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Professor Kristi Hoffman | Sociology
As a part of her Criminology and Intimate, Marital and Family Relationships courses, Kristi Hoffman, professor of sociology, offered a service learning component. Students spent ten hours each semester volunteering at the Bethany Hall Recovery Home for Women in Roanoke, a residential treatment facility that helps women recover from substance abuse.
Hoffman believes the Bethany Hall project dispels many stereotypes about drug offenders. "By being involved with the project, studen