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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Sociology

Findings contradict negative assumptions about universal payments

Hands spreading our hundred dollar bills.When given cash with no strings attached, low- and middle-income parents increased their spending on their children, according to research led by WSU sociologist Mariana Amorim.

The study, published in the journal Social Forces, also found that the additional funding had little impact on » More …

Humanities faculty present ways to bridge community divides

Helping to bridge divides of understanding within communities is at the heart of four free, public presentations by Washington State University professors to be hosted online in October.

Sociologist Jennifer Sherman will present “Diamonds in the Rough: The Gentrification of Rural Washington” and philosopher Michael Goldsby will present “Why Deny Science.” » More …

$3M grant supports transformative graduate student research

Dylan Bugden, Erica Crespi, and Alexander Fremier.Washington State University will soon be preparing graduate students to tackle a difficult, interdisciplinary problem that is more than 1,200 miles long: the Columbia River.

With the support of a $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation, WSU will develop a research training program focused on the relationships among rivers, watersheds, and communities. The program is intended to » More …

Meet the new faculty of fall 2021

College of Arts and Sciences - Washington State University.Meet the college’s newest faculty, whose scholarly expertise and interests—from transnational geographies to transgender studies, culturally relevant music to immigration law, and mind and body awareness to fluids in the Earth’s crust—enrich and expand the arts and sciences at WSU. » More …

Testing arrest deferrals, early release amid the pandemic

County jail.Sociology professor Jennifer Sherman studies rural jails in eastern Washington. Together with fellow WSU sociologists Jennifer Schwartz and Clay Mosher, she investigates why rural jail populations are on the rise despite declines in urban and suburban jails.

“Our research began before the pandemic hit, so we did our best to adapt and used COVID as a natural experiment,” Sherman says. “We learned a lot about the resilience of our communities by » More …

Sociologist’s new book examines changing rural economics

Jennifer Sherman holding a book. Even before COVID-19 prompted thousands of city-dwellers to seek new lifestyles in the country, sociology professor Jennifer Sherman had been researching and writing about a remote place she calls “Paradise Valley,” where efforts to revitalize the local economy with an influx of restaurants, cafes, hotels, and souvenir shops dramatically changed the community.

Her new book, Dividing Paradise: Rural Inequality and the Diminishing American Dream tells the story of » More …

Cannabis research center established

Cannabis plants.Early efforts in cannabis research at WSU have now grown into a full, multi-disciplinary research center with nearly 100 scientists working on a diverse range of cannabis-related projects. More than a dozen CAS faculty across chemistry, sociology, psychology, criminal justice, and political science are affiliated with the newly christened Center for Cannabis Policy, Research and Outreach, or CCPRO. » More …

Living the life precarious

Dalton Russell poses with a kayak on top of a sports van.In the United States, the subculture of precariat van-dwellers and car-based nomads remains largely under the radar.

“It sounds like the Dust Bowl all over again,” says Jennifer Sherman, WSU associate professor of sociology. “People are escaping places they can’t afford only to be exploited by some new sector in a new place and then, they move on when they can’t afford to live there either.”

Sherman says the American mythology of retiring and traveling the country in an RV is built on » More …

Making a difference

Lead Ceremony 2021. President's Awards.The 2021 WSU President’s Awards for Leadership and Engagement Award of Distinction (LEAD) recognized 17 CAS students and a faculty member for outstanding contributions across our diverse campus communities.

“This is a prestigious award that recognizes…the ways they give back to the community and empower others,” said Phillip Sinapati, ASWSU advisor and » More …