Announcements & Achievements

Super Readers are Super Heroes team dressed in costumes with dogs

Team members from the University’s "Super Readers are Superheroes" literacy program participate in the Run for Education


As an annual tradition, on Sunday, October 21, eight members of the University's "Super Readers are Superheroes" literacy program along with one supporter and four dogs participated in the Run for Education to benefit the Education Alliance of Washoe County. The literacy team, along with four of their dogs, dressed up as superheroes to promote their slogan "Super Readers are Superheroes." The literacy program is generously funded through the Regent's Service Program, with help from the College of Liberal Arts, Criminal Justice Department, Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program, and the School of Social Research and Justice Studies. The literacy program works with Boys and Girls Club of Truckee Meadows to improve literacy in at risk youth. In the past four years, the team has helped more than 500 students build their confidence and reading skills.

Photo caption from left: Alicia DeVault (Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program student), Courtney Lyons (Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program student), Evan Murphy (Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program student), Alexander Lerner (Philosophy Department M.A. student), Dr. Monica Miller, director of the literacy program (Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program and Criminal Justice Department), Matt Coombes (literacy program supporter), Christine McDermott, (Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program student), Sara Gray (Criminal Justice Department M.A. student), and in front: Jackie Kirshenbaum, supervisor of literacy program (Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program student), Not pictured: Robert Yturralde (Sociology Department M.A. student).

Director, School of Social Research and Justice Studies


The School of Social Research and Justice Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno is pleased to announce that Clayton D. Peoples, Ph.D., has accepted the position of Director of the School of Social Research and Justice Studies.

Dr. Peoples is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology. His interests span social stratification, political sociology/social movements, social psychology/social networks, peace/war/conflict, state-corporate/white-collar crime, courts and comparative/cross-national sociology. Dr. Peoples is an award-winning instructor (Early Career Award for Innovation in Teaching from the Pacific Sociological Association and the College of Liberal Arts Dean's Teaching Award).

Dr. Peoples has published a number of scholarly articles in peer-reviewed journals (The Sociological Quarterly; Crime, Law, and Social Change; Sociological Forum) and his papers have won awards from sections of the American Sociological Association (Section on Peace, War, and Social Conflict). Clayton has also been awarded competitive fellowships (Presidential Fellowship at Ohio State and Edmond J. Safra Lab Fellowship at Harvard University) and grants (Congressional Research Award from the Dirksen Congressional Center).

School to Offer Social Justice Internship


Earn credits and explore social justice in the community with an internship opportunity through the School of Social Research and Justice Studies: SRJS 492.

Prerequisites: You must have junior or senior standing, have a 3.0 cumulative GPA, be majoring or minoring and have completed at least 12 credits in Communication Studies, Criminal Justice, or Sociology.

For more information, contact Dara Naphan.

Mary Stewart - Dean’s Award for Extraordinary Service


Mary Stewart, Director of the School of Social Research and Justice Studies has been awarded the Dean's Award for Extraordinary Service to the College of Liberal Arts! She will be recognized at the Dean's Faculty and Staff Awards on Friday, April 22 at 4:00pm.

Marta Elliott awarded Thornton Peace Prize


Marta Elliott received the Thornton Peace Prize this year for her advocacy work for and research on student veterans over the last decade. She situates her work within the framework of peace work since it supports student veterans and helps to heal their invisible wounds and restore their full potential in life. The Thornton Peace Prize was established in 1970 by William and Barbara Thornton, both graduates of the University of Nevada, Reno. This award, given annually, recognizes an individual or group from the university community who exemplifies by word or deed that use of force is not an acceptable means for settling disputes.

Jim Richardson delivers keynote address


Professor Jim Richardson delivered a keynote address at the Religions and Human Rights International Conference Padova (Italy), April 14-15, 2016 on the topic "Religions and Human Rights." His presentation was entitled Managing Religion: Case Studies from Europe and around the World.

Judicial Studies Director


The School of Social Research and Justice Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno is pleased to announce that Shawn Marsh, Ph.D., has accepted the position of Director of the Judicial Studies Program and Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies and the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Social Psychology. Dr. Marsh received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology in 2007 from the University of Nevada, Reno after completing a master's degree in Guidance and Counseling. He replaces the current director, Professor James T. Richardson, J.D., Ph.D., who will retire at the end of the current academic year after serving as faculty for 48 years.

Dr. Marsh comes to the University from the National Council of Family and Juvenile Court Judges (NCJFCJ) where he is currently Chief Program Officer -Juvenile Law Programs. He has significant experience in judicial training, judicial program assessment and teaching in social psychology and law. During his tenure at NCJFCJ he has been directly involved in the education of judges in a number of areas. In addition, through conferences, seminars, and intensive institutes his teaching has reached over 10,000 justice professionals including judges, police, social workers, probation officers, prosecutors, defense counsel and court administrators. He has supervised a range of research projects related to juvenile justice and juvenile courts and delinquency funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Health and Human Services and a number of states.

In addition to his teaching, research, scholarship and administrative responsibilities, Dr. Marsh has brought the importance of various juvenile justice topics to the public through numerous blogs and op-eds, interviews and commentaries in print, radio and television at the local, state and national level. He brings a rich array of experience and an extensive background in judicial training and justice studies to his position.

Mary Stewart, director of the School of Social Research and Justice Studies and chair of the search committee said, "Shawn brings his considerable scholarly and research expertise not just to Judicial Studies but to other departments in the School. His background fits well with the new M.A. being developed by the Department of Communication and his training in the social psychology of law will augment this important area in the Social Psychology doctoral program. Faculty in the School welcome him to Judicial Studies and the School."
Retiring director Richardson said, "I am delighted that Shawn will become the new director. He has a wealth of experience working with judges and has the background and training needed to continue the success of the Judicial Studies and Justice Management graduate degree programs.

New Social Justice Certificate


The purpose of the certificate in social justice is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the causes and consequences of inequality and social injustice. Additionally, it allows students to develop theoretically informed and methodologically sound solutions to local, national and global issues. Students will engage in research and scholarship on significant and current justice issues in society that broadly pertain to inequality and injustice in legal, criminal and civil areas. Specific topics will vary each semester, but may include mental health and illness, the justice system, housing policy, family conflict, economic inequality, homelessness, hate crimes, police violence, incarceration and prisoner rights, alternative dispute resolution, toxic communities, disabilities and aging. Courses from all departments in the School of Social Research and Justice Studies, as well as the graduate programs in the Grant Sawyer Center, will be integrated in the certificate.

Contact Mary Stewart for further information.

New Courses


SRJS 720 - Colloquium in Social Justice

Team-taught by faculty in the departments of Communication studies, criminal justice, sociology, the School of Community Health Sciences and the Judicial Studies program. This course focuses on the relationship between structural, social and cultural factors and a range of social justice issues related to immigration, mental and physical health, poverty, the justice and judicial systems, income inequality, conflict resolution and other areas.

Offered: Thursdays: 4-6:45 p.m.
Mack social science, room 340
Refer to the fall schedule or check with Mary Stewart for further information.

SRJS 792 - Internship in Social, Research and Justice Fields

Professional work experience under the collaborative supervision of a university faculty member from the School of Social Research and Justice Studies and personnel in non-profit, public, education, government, or business organizations. Reports are prepared periodically and at the conclusion of the internship. Advance approval required.

SRJS 492 - Internship

The School of Social Research and Justice Studies has a new internship course which may be of interest to your students. Please refer your interested students to the fall schedule or check with Jennifer Hennessey-Booth for further information.

Graduating Senior, Parker Cole, wins CLA Outstanding Graduate from the School of Social Research and Justice Studies for 2015


The School of Social Research and Justice Studies is pleased to announce that Parker Cole was awarded the College of Liberal Arts Dean's Award for Outstanding Graduate from the School of Social Research and Justice Studies. Parker will be graduating in May with a double major in sociology and political science, fields that he sees as directly complementing each other and directly applicable to his academic and personal interests. Parker attended NYU for a couple of years before coming to the University of Nevada, Reno. His GPA at both institutions was excellent, with a 3.5 at NYU and then a GPA of 3.986 at UNR, this latter GPA reflecting his even greater academic commitment. Parker has a keen interest in social justice concerns, specifically in the impact of privatization of major social service organizations and institutions on the lives of persons who need their services. His current work with Clayton D. Peoples, an associate professor of sociology, reflects this interest. It is an investigation of the influence of media on the way people understand privatization policies at the state and municipal levels. Such opinions are important because they shape the response to legislative and local policy decisions.

Parker's plans are to complete his degree, then to pursue an M.A. degree and transition to working with a local advocacy or policy group on social justice issues, broadly defined. This combination of work and academics will provide him with a blend of knowledge and real world experience that will prepare him for the Ph.D. studies he then plans to pursue. His plan is to complete a doctoral program and then to apply his knowledge and academic experience to advancing social justice and democratic causes specifically in the area of the delivery of services to vulnerable populations, including those with structural locations such as race, class, gender, or age, as well as personal characteristics that lead to such vulnerability.

Monica Miller - New Textbook


Psychology, Law, and the Wellbeing of Children - Presents a unique approach that focuses on how specific legal actions impact children's development and wellbeing. Covers the most current and hotly debated topics pertaining to children, such as gender-specific programming in detention centers, sex offender laws that affect juveniles, allowing children a voice in divorce proceedings and whether children should be required to receive HPV vaccines. Discusses the community sentiment surrounding legal actions that affect children. Provides original empirical evidence and psycho-legal analysis concerning numerous legal actions. Chapters are written by top researchers and practitioners in psychology and law. Edited by our own Monica Miller, Ph.D., J.D.

Markus Kemmelmeier – Papers


Untreated depression contributes to higher suicide rates in U.S. honor cultures. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology - Osterman and Brown demonstrated that U.S. honor states had higher rates of suicide than non-honor states and related this phenomenon to the higher incidence of depression and a reduced readiness to seek anti-depression treatment in honor states. The present study critiques their research and re-examines the origin of the association between honor culture and suicide using a more expansive multi-year data set and controlling for culturally relevant factors (i.e., climate, gun ownership, population density, collectivism, access to health care, economic deprivation). Written by our own Markus Kemmelmeier, Ph.D.