Introducing the 2010-2011 Cohort

You’ve seen them around.  You’ve met them.  You’ve probably even become their friends and colleagues.  But here are some factoids about the first-years that you may not already know … Enjoy!  (photos by Nihal Celik)

TYLER CRABB


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) Sociology is the most intellectually legitimate approach to address the most pressing issues of our day – not to mention the past and future.

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? The University of Maryland, College Park, is my favorite thing about living in the DC area.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). G.K. Chesterton wrote philosophy, Christian apologetics, and my personal favorite – politically/theologically motivated detective fiction. The Man Who Knew Too Much is a collection of fun detective stories, and anything with Father Brown is immensely entertaining. All his stuff is public domain so go to Gutenberg.org and go crazy.

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? “Dichterliebe.”

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? Museums

Free for all! Insert and answer your own question here. I can’t deal with such freedom. Like Sarte said, it’s crushing to be condemned to such freedom. It’s an unanswerable question.

SHARON EDENS


Classification: UNCLASSIFIED

What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) Why are military personnel different?  What makes the military “tick”?

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? I don’t have to drive 3 hours just to get somewhere to do something, like in Missouri.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). Platoon Leader by James R. McDonough, About Face by David Hackworth and Julie Sherman, We Were Soldiers Once…And Young by Harold G. Moore and Joseph Galloway

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? Versions of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? Spend time with my family

Free for all! Insert and answer your own question here! What is one of your skills, other than something to do with sociology?  Playing the piano.

ANYA GALLI

What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) Sociology is good for understanding diversity, inequality, and community through empiricism and theory. It’s also good for doing research that has the potential to create social change.

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? Walking everywhere, the Latin American food on 18th street in DC, Malcolm X Park, having a fantastic roommate, and living somewhere with actual seasons again.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). This Bridge Called My Back; Sister Outsider; History of Sexuality; Sexism and God Talk; Unbearable Weight; Gender Trouble; Epistemology of the Closet; Empire; Calvin and Hobbes; Peace is Every Step.

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? Janelle Monae, “Tightrope”

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? Learn to do a handstand.

RACHEL GUO


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) It helps us look at both personal life and society in a new way, gets us to reflex upon things that we used to take for granted.  I’m interested in Gender.

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? Haven’t got time to explore and enjoy the area yet…

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). Can’t recall any at this moment….

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? I probably will just shuffle my iPod.

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? Making progress on my French, reading more. Writing something, becoming a better person.

Free for all! Insert and answer your own question here. None at the moment…

JONATHAN JACKSON


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) Studying everything.  I love that sociology is so broad and interdisciplinary.  I guess I particularly use sociology to help answer questions about urban landscapes.  Why does poverty exist in certain pockets of cities and not in others?  Why do people build structures to segregate themselves?

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? I love that it is a city largely built on human-scale.  I’ve mainly lived in cities that have a heavy car culture and its so nice that I’m in a city with row homes and a great metro.  Also, I live being at the center of the political world.  It’s so much fun going to rallies and other events.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). 1. Ishmael by Daniel Quinn; 2. People’s History of the United States; 3. The Communist Manifesto; 4. Anything by Christopher Buckley; 5. Robert Bellah’s Beyond Belief; 6. Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser; 7. Watchmen by Alan Moore; 8. 1984 by George Orwell

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? David Bowie’s “Rebel Rebel”

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? I hope to go hiking in the Appalachians.  I would like to visit some old civil war sites like Antietam.  I also hope to pay a visit to Annapolis.  Since I’m so close to several cities I hope to travel to Philadelphia, Wilmington and Pittsburgh.

DENAE JOHNSON


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) I think the best questions are those of group formation, group identification and how people interact with one another over time and why. A burning question that I have is of emergence of the so-called phenomenon of the mixing of cultures and ethnicities.  I am also interested in hate group formation and hate crimes.  I think all of these questions are answered best within stratification!

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? I have loved Washington, D.C. since I was a child! I believe I could be very happy living in or very near ANY major city, but I am already familiar with the area, and living less than three hours from home allows me to be (somewhat!) available to my loved ones.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). From the top of my head:  Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, ANYTHING written by bell hooks, This Bridge Called My Back: Writings of Radical Women of Color (which is a new favorite), and Weinbach and Grinnel’s Statistics for Social Workers (which has surprising been my statistical lifesaver on several occasions!)

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? Without a doubt, it would be Floetry’s “Sunshine,” which can put me in tears on the right day!

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? Besides getting a Ph.D, I would like to become a stronger and wiser woman, and a better daughter.  Also, I am looking forward to meeting many amazing people over the next few years!

Free for all! Insert and answer your own question here. Pet Peeve?  I cringe when people butcher the spelling/pronunciation of my name. 

JEEHYE KANG


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) What local people would face with in the globalizing world and how they respond to it, are burning questions that I have pursued. My intuition whispered me that sociology will help me out answer them, and I listened to it. Demography plus some other areas are likely to be my specialty areas!

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? I am happy with being in Maryland–College Park, which is in the D.C. metro area. Coexisting cultures from all around the world fascinate me! You are welcomed to join a culinary adventure with me.

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? Let me make my everyday in Maryland the best, and see how it goes. Then I will answer that question in five years–hopefully. Getting into Maryland was one of the best opportunities given in my life! I won’t waste it! 

Free for all! Insert and answer your own question here. Closing introducing myself, I recommend you a book: Hope for the Flowers. This children novel is my life-inspirer. I wish it gives you courage and hope, too!!! Thanks!!!

MANDI MARTINEZ


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) I like that sociology is useful to address problems that exist in society.  It can be used to teach others about those problems and somewhere along the line instill a desire in individuals to work towards changing them (in theory).

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? I’m definitely a city person.  I love being close enough to D.C. to go whenever I want, yet far enough to avoid the typical annoyances of city life.  It’s also nice to be relatively close to many different places.  I love spending time in New York City, and hope to do that often now that I live so close.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). Unequal Childhoods – Annette Lareau; The God of Small Things – Arundhati Roy; Everything is Illuminated – Jonathan Safran Foer; One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel García Márquez

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? Ok I Believe You But My Tommy Gun Don’t – Brand New

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? I’m hoping to stay sane through grad school.  I’ll try to make time to do things I enjoy, and spend time with family and friends.  Other than that, I don’t have any set long term goals.

ZACH RICHER


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) The sociologists have only obfuscated the world, in various ways; the point is to understand it.

What are you liking most about living in the D.C. metro area? When I attend a disappointing political rally, I know that I can just go home on the metro.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). Spend junior high reading Vonnegut, high school reading Dostoevsky, college reading Wallace, and in grad school read your homework.

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? It would probably be a string of curse words, set to a melody of my own creation.

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you’re here in Maryland? I’d kind of like to do a zoography on gray and black squirrels on campus.

DANIEL SWANN


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) I think that sociology is useful for a variety of things, among the most important of which is generating conversations about the links between social phenomenon and social outcomes. I think that finding a balance between structure and agency in social psychology is one of the best ways at getting at some of the worlds most historically pressing questions such as ‘why do people do what they do?’ ‘ why people believe what they believe’ and ‘why do people turn out the way the way the do?’

What are you liking most about living in the DC metro area? Since, I’m from here I just like being back home.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). Treatise on the Gods Mencken; The Souls of Black Folks DuBois; The Protestant Ethic and Spirit of Capitalism, Calculating God Sawyer

If you were stuck in the data dungeon (aka the department computer lab) for hours on end with your whole month’s worth of Pandora access spent, what one song would you sing to yourself over and over and over again while you worked? “Us” by Ice Cube

Besides getting a PhD, what are you hoping to do in the next half-decade or so that you are here in Maryland? Come to some sort of clarity on how to merge my passions with being successful and fulfilled.

Free for all! Insert and answer your own question here! Who are some of your major influences on your academic work? Richard Dawkins, Chris Hitchens, Zora Neale Hurston, Ice Cube, Tupac Shakur, Martin Bunzl, Locke, Sarte, Hobbes, Jerry Foder.

JENELLE VILLAREAL


What’s sociology good for? (in other words, what burning questions do you have that sociology helps you get at? Are there particular areas of sociology (a.k.a. “specialty areas” — standard, alternative, never-before-heard-of) that help you get at those questions better?) Sociology helps me study all those strange ways that status differences influence social interaction. In case you can’t tell, I’m in love with social psychology.

What are you liking most about living in the DC metro area? It’s so much prettier here than in Texas and there’s so much fun stuff in DC. That said, DC is only fun if I don’t have to drive through it.

Give us your (grossly abbreviated) essential reading list (both sociology and non-sociology suggestions welcome!). I adore reading. Most of what I read is classic fiction and my home library probably looks like a literature teacher’s dream. Thus, my list of favorite books is probably not terribly useful or exciting to most people. However, one book that I would recommend to anyone and everyone is The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. If you want me to get really picky, the best translation is by Katherine Woods.

What is one hobby you still have time to do? Cooking. I have a beautiful collection of cookbooks that I use very often, and lately I’ve started baking when I get particularly stressed. (Be prepared, I will probably bring food to campus to share a few times a semester and I might ask some of you to taste test my wedding food ideas sometime in the next 7 months.)

What one thing should you never ask me about? Politics. I hate politics. I don’t keep up with it well. Maybe I should have factored that in a little bit more before moving so close to the city of politicians.

Random fact? I can legibly write upside down in cursive.

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