2021 SOM Annual Conference

October 14 & 15, 2021
virtual—join us from anywhere

This years theme

Finding Connections in an Uncertain World

Join us for our annual conference on the theme Finding Connections in an Uncertain World this October 14th-15th! The conference will be virtual—join us from anywhere as we explore connections between variables, between social structures, between individuals, or between theoretical or methodological frameworks, and of course, connect with other sociologists! I have no doubt you could use a couple of days to be virtually surrounded by other people who share the sociological perspective. If you have ideas for panels, papers to submit for competition, presentations to share, or the desire to get involved in many other ways, we welcome your participation.

Please set aside Thursday, October 14th and Friday, October 15th and find connections with Sociologists of Minnesota! The sessions will show how all of us—teachers, researchers, students, and applied sociologists—are using sociology to challenge the taken-for-granted, pose new questions, and seek solutions based on our shared knowledge of humans in society. Read on to find the Call for Presentations and information our Student Paper Competition!

Headshot of Alyasah Ali Sewell.
Keynote Address
Dr. Alyasah Ali Sewell
Friday, October 15th @ 11:00 AM

All It Takes Is One Block:

The Legacy of Redlining in Lethally Surveilled Neighborhoods

Show Description

Full Schedule

Thursday, October 14th

11:00 – 12:15 PM

Presidential Address

President: Sarah Epplen, Minnesota State, Mankato

Theme: Friends and Enemies: What a Global Pandemic Taught me about Society

Distinguished Service to Sociologists of Minnesota Awardee

Sadie Pendaz-Foster, Inver Hills Community College

Student Paper Competition Awards

Presented by Audrey Devine Eller (she/her/hers), College of St. Scholastica

12:30 – 1:45 PM

Option A: Paper Session: Youth and Social Institutions

Mason Jones, Teresa Swartz, and Douglas Hartman, “How Kids Understand and Experience Meritocracy in American Youth Sports,” University of Minnesota

Aaron Hoy, Jori Nkwenti, and Sachita Pokhrel, “Who’s Afraid of Divorce? Sexual Minority Young Adults and Their Willingness to Divorce,” Minnesota State, Mankato

Audrey Devine Eller (she/her/hers), “Giving Advice One Minute at a Time: Constraints on Teachers’ Role in Post-Secondary Planning,” College of St. Scholastica

Aimzhan Iztayeva, “‘Does the Fatherhood Bonus Apply to Single Fathers? Evidence from a Survey Experiment,” University of Minnesota

Presider: Timothy J. Loney (he/him/his), Vermilion Community College

Option B: Sociology Clubs During COVID

Presider: Saiful Islam, Minnesota State, Mankato

2:00 – 3:15 PM

Panel: Engaging our Sociological Imaginations at Different Career-Points

Vicky Knickerbocker (she/hers), (Retired from) Inver Hills Community College

Silvia Espinoza (she/hers), Bank of the West

Aaron Hoy (he/him), Minnesota State, Mankato

Sana Illahe - South Dakota State University

Presider: Sadie Pendaz-Foster, Inver Hills Community College

3:30 – 4:45 PM

Option A: Panel: Online Activism

Milena Bates (she/her), MN LEND Fellow and MN Autistic Alliance Co-Founder
Jules Edwards (she/her), Indigenous Disability Advocate, Writer Autistic, Typing, Co-Founder MN Autistic Alliance
Tiffany Tully (she/they) Disability Advocate and Writer, Quirky.Stimmy.Cool
Paul Kaefer (he/him/his) Senior Analytics Engineer, Carrot Health

Presider: Elizabeth Scheel-Keita (she/her/hers), St. Cloud State University

Option B: Paper Session: Health, Society, and Public Policy

Jacob Huang, “The Imact of Social Determiniants on Perceptions of COVID-19 for Elderly: A Conceptual Framework,” St. Cloud State University

Steve Buechler, “How Cancer Prepared Me for a COVID-19 World,” Minnesota State, Mankato

Fio Haire, ““What I Used to Feel:” Relating Apostasy and Mental Health”, Minnesota State University Mankato

Presider: Saiful Islam, Minnesota State, Mankato

5:00 – 7:30 PM

Film and Discussion: Driving While Black: Race, Space, and Mobility in America

This compelling documentary explores the role of the automobile in experiences of freedom, and racism, and violence in Black people’s lives. Using interviews and striking historical images, the film challenges viewers to recognize the historical basis for current social realities. It is a reminder that racial violence was present far before we were able to record it on phones. The emphasis on lived experience reminds us of the importance of listening to voices that have been ignored in the past. Inspired by the work of Gretchen Sorin, the documentary brings scholarly research to life and encourages us to see the background and relevance of “Driving While Black.”

Discussant: Sadie Pendaz-Foster, Inver Hills Community College
Discussant question developer: Jennifer Kraipowich, Anoka Ramsey Community College

7:30 – 8:30 PM

Sociologists’ Social

Stick around and get to know other attendees. Meet new colleagues, build social networks, and have an informal chat with fellow sociologists. Family, friends, and pets are all welcome!

Co-host: Jacob Huang, St. Cloud State
Co-host: Lisa Waldner, St. Thomas University

Friday, October 15th

9:30 – 10:45 AM

Panel: Learning to Teach in COVID Times

Nabil Mohamed, Recent M.A., Graduate of Minnesota State, Mankato

Emily Gunderson Recent M.A., Graduate of Minnesota State University, Mankato

Jori Nkwenti, Graduate Student, Minnesota State University, Mankato

Brooke Weinmann, Graduate Student, Minnesota State University, Mankato

Charles Hassigner, Graduate Student Minnesota State University, Mankato

Presider: Sarah Epplen, Minnesota State, Mankato

11:00 – 12:15 PM

Keynote: “All It Takes Is One Block: The Legacy of Redlining in Lethally Surveilled Neighborhoods”

Dr. Alyasah A. Sewell, Emory University

12:15 – 1:00 PM

Lunch Break

1:00 – 2:15 PM

Option A: Panel: SCSU Alums Share Their Wisdom

Courtney Schmidt (she/her/hers), Family Advocate, Headstart

Madilyne Wegener (she/her), Community Engagement Specialist, Disability Hub, MN

Ellen So (she/they), Physical Therapy Graduate Student, Creighton University

Presider: Bridget Conlon Mayfield, St. Cloud State University

Option B: Film: Jim Crow of the North

Discussant: Audrey Devine Eller, College of St. Scholastica

2:30 – 3:45 PM

Special Session! Don’t Miss Our Award Winners!
The Future of Sociologists of Minnesota
Caroline Rose Student Paper Competition – Undergraduate

Inge Pham-Swann, “Constructing the ‘New Normal’: An Analysis of Student Interaction with COVID-19 Policies on the North Star College’s Campus, Macalester College

Kathryne Richards, “Rat in a Cage: Addiction Recovery, Social Connection, and the COVID-19 Pandemic,” Metro State

Sophia Kaufmann, “Dual Advocacy: The Garifuna’s Fight for Indigenous and Afro-Descendants’ Rights,” Macalester College

Josh Groven, “Native Futures, Complex Pasts: South Africa’s Griqua at the Boundaries of Colonialism and Indigeneity,” Macalester College

Presider: Audrey Devine Eller (she/her/hers), College of St. Scholastica

4:00 – 5:00 PM

Business Meeting followed by Board Meeting

Call for Presentations

We welcome submissions for sessions, papers, posters, and panels. Please send the title a brief (~150-word) abstract to Program Coordinator, Bridget Conlon Mayfield at baconlon@stcloudstate.edu with the subject line Sociologists of Minnesota Submission. If you would like to submit a paper or serve as panelist for one of the sessions, please indicate the session title in your email. We welcome original research, works in progress, discussions on teaching and applied work from students, faculty, and applied sociologists.

Proposed Sessions

Caroline Rose Student Paper Competition

The Caroline Rose Student Paper Competition is a great opportunity for students to share their work with a professional audience! The Sociologists of Minnesota is offering cash prizes for first- and second-place within the undergraduate and graduate. All winners receive free conference registration, meals, and membership in SOM. Winners are expected to present at our Annual Conference on October 14th and 15th. All submissions will be reviewed by at least two members of the Student Paper Competition Committee using a rubric (available on the Sociologists of Minnesota website www.socmn.org and all students will receive feedback from the Committee on their work, even if they do not win an Award. Faculty, please invite your students to enter their papers in recognition of their outstanding work under your guidance. Students, we welcome you to submit one or more papers. Such a submission (and win) looks good on your resume and/or graduate school application and recognizes your outstanding engagement as a student sociologist. Please see the accompanying rules of the competition. If there are no acceptable papers, prizes will not be offered.

Papers involving human subjects must have Institutional Review Board (or its equivalent) approval and must note the receipt of approval in the methodology section of the paper.

Submission Deadline: September 30, 2021

For questions, Please contact Aaron Hoy aaron.hoy@mnsu.edu

View The Rules

Contact Information

For any questions or concerns about the 2021 Conference, please contact Bridget Conlon-Mayfield.

Conference Program Chair

Bridget Conlon-Mayfield
baconlon@stcloudstate.edu