Ryan Talbert: CLAS Research in Academic Themes Award

October 14, 2022

Please join us in congratulating Assistant Professor Ryan Talbert, whose proposal titled “Adverse Childhood Experiences, Social Roles, and Cardiovascular Health among Black Men and Women” has been awarded funding through the CLAS Research in Academic Themes initiative.

Mary Bernstein: 2022 Provost’s Award

July 5, 2022

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Congratulations to Professor of Sociology Mary Bernstein, who has been awarded the 2022 Provost’s Award for Excellence in Community Engaged Scholarship in the Distinguished Scholar Research Award category. Bernstein has shown a commitment to engaged scholarship through her intersectional research on sexual orientation, gender, and race, her teaching, and her service to the UConn community, and, most importantly, through her current work aimed at developing evidence-based solutions to gun violence. Her research focuses on the disproportionately higher rates of gun violence in Black and Brown communities, positing that racial justice cannot be achieved until the high rates of gun violence are reduced, especially in urban areas. She has partnered with organizations and communities in Connecticut to help evaluate and develop gun violence prevention and reduction measures, including working on a blueprint for a new Office of Gun Violence Prevention in New Haven and evaluating a statewide gun buyback effort. She also frequently includes students in her work, with many of them going on to become research partners and later to secure academic positions or careers in social justice fields. Her work and mentorship have radiated outward, affecting communities locally and more broadly through her efforts, as well as through the development of students as researchers and practitioners.

David Embrick: Kathleen S. Lowney Mentoring Award

June 16, 2022

Please join us in congratulating David Embrick, winner of the 2022 Kathleen S. Lowney Mentoring Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems!

Established in 2016, the Kathleen S. Lowney Mentoring Award is awarded annually to an outstanding faculty member or community activist. The award was established to recognize the value of quality mentoring relationships between mentor and mentee and/or mentoring programs especially those for undergraduate or graduate students and/or for social activists, particularly for younger scholars and activists. 


Nicholas Simon: Winner of the CSCU Excellence in Teaching Award

May 24, 2022

Congratulations to Professor Nicholas Simon of Sociology at Eastern Connecticut State University for receiving the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities System’s 2022 Excellence in Teaching Award! Professor Simon received his Ph.D. in Sociology from UConn in 2017.

“Students say Simon has taught them to have a passion for sociology. They give him overwhelmingly positive reviews for the opportunities he gives them to conduct research and volunteer and engage with the community as part of their courses.”

Check out the article here:

Nicholas Simon Wins CSCU Excellence in Teaching Award

UConn Junior Named a Truman Scholar

April 26, 2022

Congratulations to Irene Soteriou ’23 (CLAS) who has been recently named a Truman Scholar with the help of mentoring from Professor of Sociology, Bradley Wright. Check out the article here. 

*Excerpt from Article*

“Working with Dr. Wright was illuminating in that it opened my eyes to the possibility of leading a life of intentionality and purpose without compromising on sustainability,” says Soteriou. “His mentorship motivated me to consider ways in which I could more creatively utilize resources uniquely accessible to me at UConn so as to leave a tangible impact in spaces that hold great meaning to my community, and he showed me that it was feasible to carve out a path towards a long-lasting career that I find deeply fulfilling.”

Nicholas Xenophontos: 2022 SURF Grant

Please join us in congratulating undergraduate Sociology major Nicholas (Niko) Xenophontos and his faculty mentor, Mary Bernstein, on being awarded a SURF grant for his research project entitled:

“Preventing Gun Violence Online: Comparing Social Media Content from the National Rifle Association and Everytown for Gun Safety.”

Andrew Deener and Christin Munsch: OVPR Scholarship Facilitation Fund

February 10, 2022

The Office of the Vice President for Research recently announced the Scholarship Facilitation Fund (SFF) The SFF is designed to assist faculty in the initiation, completion, or advancement of research projects, scholarly activities, creative works, or interdisciplinary initiatives that are critical to advancing the faculty member’s scholarship and/or creative works.

We are proud to announce that the following Sociology faculty members were among the winners:


Andrew Deener
Andrew Deener, The Crisis of Climate Change and the Transformation of Literature
Christin Munsch, Masculine Organizational Defaults: Gender Differences in Time and Cognitive Effort

Meanings of “America” Contest Winners

December 20, 2021

The Meanings of Democracy Lab directed by Ruth Braunstein, Associate Professor of Sociology, is thrilled to announce the winners of the 2021 Meanings of “America” Multimedia Contest. They received a large number of high-quality submissions, but these finalists distinguished themselves with their originality, creativity, and the overall quality of their work. Congratulations in particular to undergraduate Sociology majors Nicholas Xenophontos (winner) and Emma Parente (honorable mention), and Sociology PhD candidate Rianka Roy (honorable mention)!

We invite all members of the UConn community to join us in congratulating them, and to stay in touch with the Meanings of Democracy Lab on Twitter and Instagram for updates on future events where they will be sharing their wonderful submissions. 

First Place Prize Nicholas Xenophontos, “Meanings of America” Honorable Mentions Srivani Agnihotram, “America” Emma Kathryn Parente, “A Student in America” Lisbeth Peguero, “Everything but Apple Pie” Rianka Roy, “Coming to America” Jenna Trott, “Because of the Brave” Exhibition Finalists Kyra Arena, “Fly Away” Cassandra Barrow, “Envy” Matthew S. Dentice, “American Hope”

First Place Prize

Nicholas Xenophontos, “Meanings of America”

Honorable Mentions

Srivani Agnihotram, “America”

Emma Kathryn Parente, “A Student in America”

Lisbeth Peguero, “Everything but Apple Pie”

Rianka Roy, “Coming to America”

Jenna Trott, “Because of the Brave”

Exhibition Finalists

Kyra Arena, “Fly Away”

Cassandra Barrow, “Envy”

Matthew S. Dentice, “American Hope”