Student and Alumni Achievement

The faculty and staff of the Sociology and Criminology Department are immensely proud of the accomplishments of our students and alumni. Whether it is through public service, academic achievement, or professional advancement, our students and alumni have distinguished themselves in many ways.

Current Student Achievement | Our Distinguished Alumni

Current Student Achievement

Keely Geyer Presentation


Keely Geyer and Chardon Murray, students in the Criminology and Public Sociology Masters Program, recently presented their research at the UNCW Graduate Student Research/Scholarship Poster Symposium on Friday, April 13th, 2012.



Chardon Murray Presentation

Ms. Geyer's presentation was titled "Environment and Crime: A Pilot Study on the Relationship Between Location and Victimization." Ms. Murray's presentation was titled, "Characteristics of Homegrown Islamist Terrorists."





Public Soc Students

Last year's Public Sociology students have just learned that their research from last year is being published in a peer-reviewed journal, Explorations, due out in November.

Congratulations to Kim Lancaster, Amanda Smith, Lindsay Carrier, Joanna Dick, Elizabeth Dodson, Hillary Geen, Jessica Glovas, Lacey Hancock, Erin O'Donnell, and Allison Whitley, for their research: "Building Community Capacity in Resource Poor Neighborhoods:  Community-University Partnerships" 


Lindsay Jeralds

Lindsey Jeralds, a student in the Criminology and Public Sociology Masters Program, has been awarded a highly competitive graduate internship at the Government Accountability Office for the summer!

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) (external site) supports the U.S. Congress by conducting original research and analysis to assess how well federally-funded  programs are operating and assist with the development of legislation and appropriation reviews.



Amanda SmithPublic Sociology student Amanda Smith presented her research at the 2010 Colonial Academic Alliance Undergraduate Research Conference in Richmond and was also chosen as a panel participant at the North Carolina Governor's Conference for Women!

The North Carolina Governor's Conference for Women was held in November, 2010 at the Raleigh Convention Center. Amanda was be part of a panel of 4 young women who are working in the state to create positive social change in their communities. Amanda discussed her work at the WHA-UNCW Community Campus over the past year.

Public Service & Community Activism

  • View video of our Public Sociology Students making a presentation to the Wilmington City Council (external site) on April 20, 2010 (presentation begins 40 minutes into the video and lasts for approximately 10 minutes). Based on their recommendations, the City Council made a motion to take action!
  • On April 19, 2010, students from Dr. Donna King’s SOC 304 Popular Culture class took to the campus to spread awareness of corporate power, labor issues, and consumerism. They created a newsletter, set up tables to talk about the aforementioned issues, and even created a thought provoking campaign to post clothing around campus with posters explaining the level of corporate insensitivity and greed that went behind the clothing's manufacturing. See pictures of the protest and read the Wake up Wilmington newsletter!
  • Students from Dr. Darrell Irwin's two CRM 110 Issues in Criminal Justice classes in the Spring 2010 Semester started the group "Hawks Helping Haiti" as their service learning project. They raised money to help with disaster relief following the devastating earthquake in Haiti. See how much money they raised and hear about how the money helped out one desperate family in Haiti!

Scholarships & Awards

  • Congratulations to Criminology major Kevin Whitley for being awarded the Troy Carr Scholarship, honoring 1992 UNCW graduate Troy Douglas Carr, who was tragically shot and killed in the line of duty. Agent Carr’s family and friends have established a scholarship fund in his memory.
  • Congratulations to Sociology major Kristen VanDeusen and Criminology major Amber Baker for being awarded the UNCW Bookstore Scholarship in May 2010!
  • Congratulations to Dr. Leslie Hossfeld and MA Grad Student and WHA-UNCW Community Campus Coordinator Kim Lancaster for being awarded $500 in funding to support the Public Sociology programs at the WHA-UNCW Community Campus.

Alumni Achievement

Liz Cherry

Liz Cherry
Assistant Professor of Sociology
Manhattanville College


Liz Cherry graduated from the Sociology program with a double major of Sociology and French, and went on to get a full scholarship and graduate assistantship to attend the University of Georgia where she earned a Ph.D. in Sociology. She’s done work on animal rights activism and other issues dealing with the sociology of food. She is now a tenure-track Assistant Professor of Sociology at Manhattanville College (external website) in New York, a prestigious liberal arts college with a strong Sociology department.

Cherry, Elizabeth, 2006. "Veganism as a Cultural Movement" Social Movement Studies, Vol. 5, No. 2, 155–170, September 2006



Jess MacDonald
English Teacher
Nice, France


Jess MacDonald
is a Spring 2010 graduate of the Criminology and Public Sociology Masters Program. For the 2010-2011 school year, she will be teaching English to french school children.

The program is through the French Embassy; she'll be working in the Nice region of France for the 2010-2011 school year teaching high school students English and American culture.

Jess is uniquely qualified to teach kids and adolescents thanks to her experience as the on-site reading program coordinator for the Hillcrest Reading Program during her time as a graduate student at UNCW.


Alicia Larkins

Alicia Larkins
Data Analyst for Bioinformatics LLC

Alicia Larkins is a Spring 2010 graduate of the Criminology and Public Sociology Masters Program.

She is a Data Analyst for Bioinformatics LLC, (external site) doing survey creation, implementation and analysis.

"I definitely appreciated everything I learned in the CAPS program," Ms. Larkins says, "because I'm pretty sure [it was] the reason I got my job."

She is hoping to build up her Analyst credentials to further pursue a career in a more Criminology focused field.

Lindsey martin

Lindsey Martin
Associate Project Director at
Danya International

Lindsey Martin
is a Spring 2010 graduate of the Criminology and Public Sociology Masters Program.

She is now the Associate Project Director at Danya International, (external site) in charge of overseeing all day-to-day aspects of two SBIR (Small Business Innovative Research) Grants from NIH.  As associate project director, she works to develop content, integrate technical work and research efforts, coordinates advisory panels and stakeholder efforts, and is responsible for managing project budgets, consultants, and subcontractors. 

She is working on a grant to develop a curriculum on relationships and sexual education for parents of teens and teens with High Functioning Autism and Asperger's Syndrome, as well as another grant charged with developing a guidebook for caregivers and direct care providers of children diagnosed with a life threatening illness.

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