Faculty Mentors

""The Graduate Director serves as the primary mentor for the student during their first year of studies. At an appropriate time during the first year, the Director may suggest a faculty mentor who provides a good fit between your interests and faculty expertise. Each incoming student beginning in Fall 2015 that does not have an RA or TA position will be assigned a temporary faculty mentor. Students who have RA/TA positions can be mentored by the faculty with whom they work and/or may be mentored by the graduate director in that first year.

After your first year of study you should select a faculty member to serve as a thesis or dissertation advisor; you will receive academic and professional guidance from this faculty member while working toward your master's thesis and/or a doctoral dissertation. You should examine graduate faculty members' individual research interests and projects throughout the course of mentor selection.

Advisor selection is a crucial aspect of graduate study in the Department of Sociology. Failure to select a faculty mentor can hinder your progress toward degree completion. Students should notify the Graduate Program Director when this decision has been made.

For more information on selecting a faculty member, read the Graduate Handbook or contact the program director.


Academic advising is primarily the responsibility of the program director. The director can help with course selection, evaluation of academic progress, and addressing any student/departmental issues that may arise. This arrangement ensures that all students are receiving consistent information with regard to course and degree requirements. The director represents the final word on issues concerning course and degree requirements.

Student Mentors

The program director assigns entering graduate students a student peer mentor. This person is an experienced graduate student who serves as an informal mentor. This arrangement fosters collaboration among the graduate students as well as a smoother transition into the departmental environment.