March/April • Volume 43 • Issue 3

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Two ASA Presidents Speak at DCSS

Ruth Milkman talking to students before her DCSS talk.

In a little less than three calendar months, the District of Columbia Sociological Society (DCSS) membership heard research talks from not one, but two ASA presidents. On November 5, 2014, current ASA President Paula England presented “Sex in College: Heterosexual Hookups, Relationships, and Persistent Gender Patterns” to nearly 50 attendees at the ASA headquarters’ conference room. Each year the DCSS invites the ASA president–elect to addresses the membership, but England’s presentation had been postponed from early March 2014 due to a major snowstorm, and she graciously agreed to come back to Washington on a mutually agreed upon date.

Then, on January 23, 2015, ASA President-elect Ruth Milkman presented “Gender, Work, and Class in the Great Depression and the Great Recession” to another audience of nearly 50 attendees (full capacity) at the ASA headquarters. In addition, Milkman participated in a meet and greet session for DC-area graduate students, organized by Sol Espinoza, DCSS Graduate Student Liaison and a doctoral student at Johns Hopkins University. According to Espinoza, “With Dr. Milkman’s generosity in sharing her time with the graduate student group, ASA and DCSS connected a pioneer in researching gender, labor, and inequality with upcoming sociologists. The students were eager to learn about sociological approaches to investigating these issues and how the central research questions and data collection methods have changed over time. It was a very exciting event that we all enjoyed tremendously.”

Paula England with DCSS President Johanna Bockman

Johanna Bockman, current DCSS President and a faculty member at George Mason University, added that “the talks by Paula England and Ruth Milkman were wonderful, so intellectually engaging with great audiences and exciting Q&A. Also, for the first time, DC-area graduate students were invited to meet personally with the ASA President-elect before her talk. These events have been a true springboard in our process of revitalizing the DCSS. Sociologists from across the greater DC area are invited to consider how sharing our experiences across the spectrum of academia, government agencies, think tanks, secondary schools, non-profit social service providers, and for-profit companies might help sociologists, especially those just starting their careers and how might DCSS promote sociological literacy and public understanding of sociology here in DC? The ASA, ASA President Paula England, and ASA President-elect Ruth Milkman are great resources in this revitalization process.”

DCSS has traditionally invited the ASA President-elect to speak to its membership around either the winter Executive Office and Budget (EOB) meeting or winter Council meeting, and the ASA President-elect has typically arrived early or stayed a little past either meeting to accommodate the talk. It is part of the effort by ASA staffto support the mission of DCSS.

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