It was the perfect day for an outdoor graduation at Brooklyn Bridge Park, as almost 400 St. Francis College students and thousands of friends and family celebrated the College's Spring 2017 Commencement, Wednesday, May 24.
Sociology and Criminal Justice
Pursue careers in social service, social work, law enforcement, parole, probation, and non-profit organizational service and management.
Johnathan Fleming spent more than 20 years behind bars for a murder he didn't commit. Rob Rahn '76, a St. Francis graduate, helped free him. Both came to St. Francis College to tell students about the experience.
Sociology and Criminal Justice come to life every day at the College. You'll meet the people working in these fields every day. People who are making a difference in people's lives.
Our goal is for students to enter the workforce prepared to solve social problems such as addressing homelessness, helping crime victims find needed services, prosecuting criminals, defending clients in a court of law, fighting injustices, and creating meaningful public policy. Graduates from our program are prepared to attend law school as well as pursue graduate work in sociology, criminal justice, criminology, and psychology.
Our faculty members conduct research in a range of areas within the disciplines of sociology and criminology including crime and popular culture, wrongful convictions, post-prison education, crime and media, and public school education in New York City. Their works have been published and they frequently appear as experts on various media.
Students can work as research assistants and gain valuable internships at social service and criminal justice agencies, including:
- Safe Horizon (an organization that works with victims of domestic violence and sexual assault),
- Senior centers,
- Child care centers,
- Probation agencies,
- Parole agencies,
- District Attorneys
- and, Law firms.
- Wrongful Convictions
- Prisons and Prisoners
- Problems of Urban Law Enforcement
- Media, Crime, and Criminal Justice
- Cultural Criminology
- Crime, Justice, and American Fiction
- Social Movements The 1950s
- The 1960s
The mission of the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice is to provide our students with the knowledge, confidence and motivation to think deeply about social issues in modern society. We seek to instill an intellectual curiosity in our students for lifelong learning and an appreciation for objectivity, application of the scientific method, and critical thinking. We intend for our students to become tolerant and open-minded individuals who are prepared intellectually and substantively for the modern workforce as well as further graduate and professional study. Our students will leave the department ready to purse constructive careers in the social services of criminal justice, social work and sociology.
Previously incarcerated students from St. Francis College's Post-Prison Program followed a May 1, 2017 screening of Rikers: An American Jail with a frank discussion on their experiences behind bars, at Rikers and other institutions, and their time now on the cusp of earning an undergraduate degree.
As her parents get ready to take in their 100th foster child, St. Francis College Assistant Academic Dean Kathleen Gray reflected on the night the family made the decision to start their heroic run of caring for those in need.
Woven into the fabric of Brooklyn's history, Nathan's Hot Dogs have become an American culinary institution. Lloyd Handwerker, grandson of founder Nathan, came to St. Francis College on March 21, 2017 to share the book and film he produced that recounts the history of Nathan's.
St. Francis College welcomed immigration law attorney Susan Henner on March 9, 2017 to discuss what's really happening in the courts and and on the ground since President Trump signed his travel executive orders.
The spirit moved civil rights pioneer Bernard LaFayette to end his talk at St. Francis College on February 21, 2017 with a song. From original Freedom Rider with now Congressman John Lewis, to a close confidant and organizer with Martin Luther King, Jr., Bernard LaFayette has spent his lifetime fighting for justice and equality through non-violence.
The Sociology & Criminal Justice Department houses three centers:
- Center for Crime and Popular Culture
- Post Prison College Opportunities Program @ St. Francis College
- Institute for Peace and Justice
These centers offer students the opportunity to hear lectures by experts in the fields of criminal justice and sociology including personal testimonies by those who have been wrongfully convicted such as Fernando Bermudez, film screenings featuring Q&A’s with directors/actors/producers such as the Compliance screening, book authors that discuss their recent research, world-renowned professionals working in criminal justice and security such as Gavin de Becker, and activists such as Jennifer Baumgardner who are dedicated to fighting for social justice. We also have frequent guest speakers, events, film screenings, and seminars.
- Students will develop and apply the “sociological imagination” to the study of the social world.
- Students will utilize qualitative and quantitative sociological methods in the pursuit of social research.
- Student will gain familiarity with social theory and the history of sociological thought.
- Students will be able to apply social theory and sociological concepts to the study of social problems.
- Students will be able to critique how race, ethnicity, sex, and gender relate to life chances in diverse societies.
- Students will develop and master the ability to understand and apply major sociological concepts and theories to complex contemporary social phenomena.
- Students will develop and master the ability to access, comprehend and synthesize sociological scholarship in order to assess others' work and for use in their own work.
- Students will understand key components of criminal justice system in the United States.
- Students will critically analyze key criminological theories.
- Students will contrast qualitative and quantitative methods as they are used in criminal justice research.
- Students will explain the role of race, ethnicity, and class in criminal justice outcomes.