Greetings from Ball State!

Do you know how much your engagement matters to the Department of Sociology? Here are just a few activities that our alumni and friends helped to make possible this year:  

Forty-five of our students have been involved in seven different community activities since last summer. The majority of these were part of faculty-directed teams that worked with our community partners to collect and analyze data that provided operational insights, assisted them in serving their populations, and helped them tell their stories to a broader public. We are grateful for our partnerships with the Hancock County Drug Court, Second Harvest, and the Recovery Café. Several students also completed internships with the Non-Profit Support Network, the BSU Office of Inclusive Excellence and the BSU Office of Institutional Research and Decision Support. Our faculty also mentored undergraduate and graduate students who presented at the North Central Sociological Association Centennial Conference in Columbus, OH, and coached them through other professionalization experiences, such as the Etiquette Dinner. These activities, which benefit from your support, as well as our collaborations with BSU’s Career Center and the Office of Immersive Learning, are vital parts of our students’ preparation for life after college. Your engagement enables them to hone their skills and helps to ensure that they are career-ready when they launch from our nest in pursuit of their passions.  

Dr. Chadwick Menning

Dr. Chadwick Menning, Chair of the Sociology Department

Thanks to your engagement, we have also been able to offer other immersive experiences beyond the classroom. For example, Dr. John Anderson’s Race and Ethnic Relations class took a series of day-long, study-away” trips to Cincinnati, Louisville, and Detroit to visit a swathe of sites that brought the topics of the class to life and prompted deeper insights and learning. We are also excited to re-launch our study abroad trip to Costa Rica this summer, under the direction of Drs. Melinda Messineo and Ellen Whitehead.  

We deeply value your engagement. If you would like to join us in advancing the work of the department, whether by mentoring students who are preparing for careers and meaningful lives, providing valuable input on our curriculum and other operations as a member of our Alumni Advisory Committee, or by making a donation, we would welcome your help and would be excited to hear from you! You are invited to contact Dr. Melinda Messineo (, who serves as the department’s Alumni Liaison, or me ( at your convenience. Donations may be made by clicking here.  

We hope that you enjoy this annual update on the accomplishments of our students, faculty, and staff!   


With warmest regards,  

Chadwick L. Menning, PhD  

Professor and Chair  

Department of Sociology