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The Department publishes a newsletter twice a year - one during the Fall semester, and again in the Spring.  The purpose of our newsletter is to deliver department news, to call your attention to important activities and to encourage you to take advantage of all that Villanova has to offer!

NEW!  Spring 2019 Interactions

In this issue:

  • Message from the Chair
  • A Foundation in Criminal Justice by Gregory Laudadio, PSC ’14 and JD ’17
  • Measuring Bias in Police Violence by Dr. Rory Kramer
  • A Conversation on Mental Health and Stigma by Dr. Meredith Bergey

Welcome to our new faculty member

Heidi Grundetjern!  

As I start my first year here at Villanova, I thank my colleagues, students, and the rest of the Villanova community for having contributed to making the experience of transitioning into a new University so smooth and enjoyable. It is a privilege to join the faculty of the Department of Sociology and Criminology.

Villanova’s promotion of the common good, diversity, and social justice resonates with my own values. Having grown up in Norway (and only moving to the United States in 2017), I embody Nordic social democratic values promoting solidarity, equality, and democracy. These values shape my scholarship in multiple ways. A focus of my research agenda is to convey complexity and nuance in the analysis of social inequalities by relying on systematic and rigorous analysis. Underlying my scholarship is the attempt to unpack taken-for-granted ideologies and power structures in society and their consequences, with the belief that such research can ultimately contribute to reducing social inequality. For example, in my research I challenge the dichotomous treatment of gender that has often dominated in criminological research.

A core research interest for me is to investigate the role of gender in crime markets. I specialize in qualitative research methods and in theoretical perspectives on gender and culture. My past research involved studying women who dealt drugs in Norway, who were dealing in upper echelons of highly gender-segmented illegal drug markets. My research revealed vast variations in women’s experiences by investigating their gender performances within different organizational and social contexts.

I continue to focus on how the intersections of social inequalities shape cultures and organizational structures within illegal drug markets, as well as how such intersections enable and constrain opportunities for women’s participation. I am collaborating with Dr. Jody Miller (Rutgers University-Newark) on a longitudinal study about women’s participation in methamphetamine markets in Missouri. We are investigating how market changes brought about by the passage of the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act have affected women’s roles in meth markets and their lives more generally.

I joined Villanova with research and teaching experience at the University of Oslo in Norway and the University of Missouri-St. Louis. With crime being one of the most gender-differentiated social problems, I am excited to offer Villanova students a new class beginning in Spring 2020—Gender, Crime and Justice—which highlights how gender shapes patterns of offending and victimization.

Villanova’s focus on learning with life-long impact is important to me. I strongly believe that the main missions of a university go beyond the subject matter to include enhancement of personal development. I am motivated to pass on some of the formative opportunities I received during my own time as a student.

2019 Student Award Winners

Medallion Winners 2018

Congratulations to our student award winners! The medallion of excellence award winners are Sarah Knowles (sociology) and Sarah Rizos (criminology). The McGarry award winners are Noelle Gambale (sociology and criminology), Kaitlyn Murray (sociology), Bethany Ho (sociology), and Avery Takaha (sociology). Pictured from left to right: Noelle Gambale, Kaitlyn Murray, Bethany Ho, Sarah Knowles, Sarah Rizos, and Avery Takaha.

View previous award winners on our About Us page.

2019 Criminology Debate Team

Debate Team

Congratulations to our criminology majors (Ryan Bowman, Christopher Beute, Lailany Viera, and Caroline Rini), led by Dr. Kelly Welch, who participated in the 6th Annual Intercollegiate Criminal Justice Debate hosted by Drexel University.

Next year's debate will be hosted by Rowan University in the Spring of 2020. Any interested criminology majors or minors can reach out to Dr. Kelly Welch for more information.