Red River Valley Kids Read project visits NDSU's Archeology Lab

The Fargo Library and NDSU are partnering up to offer kids in grades 4 to 6 the opportunity to learn more about archeology with tours of NDSU’s Archeology Lab.  Dr. John Creese will be giving tours on Saturday, March 25 at 9:30 am, 12:30 pm, 2 pm and 3:30 pm.

The tour is part of this year’s Red River Valley Kids Read project, which runs through March 31. Click here for our previous coverage of the project.

A Celebratory Sociology and Anthropology Day

With over 10 student posters, presentations from alumni, and an engaging networking lunch, we had a successful Sociology and Anthropology Day on Friday, March 3. This was the second year of this event and it was once again a great success.  It was an exciting day and demonstrated the valuable contributions that anthropology and sociology provide to understanding our social world. 

Below are the winners of the student poster contest.  We plan to showcase the posters in our department and on our website. I encourage you to take a look at them.  For those of you who did not present this year, please think about doing this next year. It was a fun event and is a great way to show others the work you have been doing in your classes.  For all presenters, I was impressed by the fantastic work you all are doing. Keep up the great work and consider submitting your poster to NDSU Explore.

Research Day Student Poster Winners

  • Best in Show: Megan Schlangen: “Exploring Comics & Nationhood in Argentina”
  • Students’ Choice: Grace Rebel, “"I Think That I'm Broken: An Oral History Examination of Disability in Academia”

We also held a raffle for students who voted in the Students’ Choice award.  The raffle winners include: Audra Buysse, Kyla Larson, and Lauren Schluter.

Congratulations to all our winners! 


Sociology Faculty Receives Recognition for Innovation in Teaching Award

Dr. Dane Mataic (Assistant Professor of Sociology) received the Recognition for Innovation in Teaching Award this fall.

This new recognition for Innovative Instructors came out of a taskforce that was created to explore how to develop and promote innovative teaching at NDSU. Instructors from across campus noted there are many great things happening in our classrooms, and they wanted a way to recognize more of these efforts. The majority of the nominations came from Dr. Mataic’s students, which makes this recognition even more special. Congratulations to Dr. Mataic!

August Faculty Success Story: Dr. Kristen Fellows

Dr. Kristen Fellows was quoted in the Summer 2022 edition of American Archaeology. The article, “The Story of Marshall’s Pen,” examines the archaeological research being done at Marshall’s Pen, a 19th Century coffee plantation in Jamaica. Dr. Fellows has worked at this site for a number of years, taking students to participate in archaeological digs.  In the article she explains, “Marshall’s Pen ‘is by far one of the best documented [colonial-era] coffee plantations in the Caribbean,’ and the finds there ‘have helped widen our view of how these places operated and how enslaved people experienced them” (p. 42). 

An excerpt of the article can be accessed at:

Congratulations on a successful Student Research Day 2022!

On April 19, 2022, four undergraduates and two graduate students from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology presented their original research in front of the University community. Their work came from a variety of classes and projects and represented a diverse range of interests, including: care and disability during Covid-19, North Dakota Prohibition and flooding in the Red River Valley, and the “immoral madams” of Greensboro, NC. Anthropology professors Dr. Kristen Fellows and Dr. Ellen Rubinstein served as faculty mentors to the students.

Prairie Public Roundtable Discussion on Ukraine

March 9, 2022

Dr. Christopher Whitsel participated in a roundtable discussion on Ukraine on Prairie Public with two other NDSU faculty. You can listen to the discussion at the following link:


Department of Sociology and Anthropology’s First Research Day Event Held on March 2

With over 14 student posters, presentations from faculty, and an engaging networking lunch, the Department of Sociology and Anthropology had a fantastic Research Day. We had a high turnout of students, which helped make the event a success.

In addition to faculty presentations, undergraduate and graduate students presented posters, showcasing research they have done in their anthropology and sociology courses. We had three awards that students could win at the poster event. These included, Undergraduate Best in Show, Graduate Best in Show, and Students’ Choice. Best in Show awards were determined by faculty votes.  The Students’ Choice award was determined by the students who attended the event.  Below are the winners of those awards.

Research Day Student Poster Winners

  • Undergraduate Best in Show: Emma DuPont: “Every Body is a Rugby Body: The Effect of Rugby on Collegiate Women’s Body Image”
  • Graduate Best in Show: Magda Lopez Rodriguez: “Beyond Better: Undocumented During COVID-19”
  • Students’ Choice: Floyd Althoff: “Ekenier: The Land of Unyielding Sound—Making the Familiar Strange”

We also held a raffle for students who voted in the Students’ Choice award.  The raffle winners include: Emily Sjelin, Emily Vieweg, and Sara Flint.

Congratulations to all our winners! 

Red Cliff Field School Featured in Episode of “Human Powered”

July 30, 2021

Dr. John Creese’s collaborative work with the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa is featured in the latest episode of Human Powered, titled, “The Power of Indigenous Knowledge.” Human Powered is a podcast produced by Wisconsin Humanities. 

In this episode, the host, Jimmy Gutierrez, traveled to the Red Cliff Reservation to learn more about a community archaeology project that is helping to reclaim and revitalize the deep history and culture of the Anishinaabe people—and training a new generation of scholars committed to centering indigenous knowledge. Listen to learn what they are doing to reclaim and revitalize the deep history and culture of their people—and to help train a new generation of scholars committed to centering indigenous knowledge.


NDSU Sociology Researcher Received Grants to Study the Impact of Routine Voter Roll Maintenance

June 28, 2021

NDSU assistant professor of sociology Dane Mataic has received two grants in collaboration with three researchers from Pennsylvania State University to study how the process of routine voter roll maintenance impacts individual voters. The first, a $283,053 collaborative grant from the National Science Foundation, and the second, a $97,000 grant from the Russell Sage Foundation, will result in a public database of voter maintenance policies for every state as well as an assessment of voter registration inequality.



Anthropology Major Poster Presentation Wins Honorable Mention at 2021 NDSU EXPLORE Showcase of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity

April 23, 2021

Anthropology major Helen Wax was awarded an honorable mention for her poster presentation, “The Cost of Death in the Upper Midwest: An Ethnographic Analysis of the American Funeral Industry,” at NDSU EXPLORE, a virtual event held during Undergraduate Research Week, April 19-23. Her work was also recognized as being among the top presentations in the category of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Education, and Business. Helen’s poster was based on research she completed in Dr. Ellen Rubinstein’s Ethnographic Research Methods class in Fall 2019. This research examined how local commercial funeral workers interact with grieving families, how the development of skilled funeral labor has altered the public’s relationship to the dead, and ultimately how funeral industry professionals perceive their work. Congratulations, Helen!


Sociology Club Wins Bison Leader Award

The Sociology Club has won the Non-Service based award for the Bison Service Challenge.  The NDSU Bison Service Challenge was created to promote service throughout NDSU. The program is a friendly competition among campus groups including athletic teams, fraternity and sorority life, residence halls, and student organizations. Throughout the year, members in each category compete to complete the most service hours. The hours are submitted to the Volunteer Network. Winning teams receive recognition at the Bison Service Challenge Award Ceremony at the end of each academic year.  This year, the Bison Leader Awards Ceremony starts at 5:30pm on April 28th in the Memorial Union - Plains Room.  

The Sociology Club is led by President Delaney Halloran under the leadership of Dr. Leretta Smith. 

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