American Sociological Association

Task Force on First-Generation and Working-Class Persons in Sociology

September 11, 2017

Council is pleased to announce the appointment of this new task force.  The charge includes the following:

  • Develop a working definition of “first-generation” and “working-class” drawing on existing literature, ASA tradition, and the task force’s substantive concerns.
  • Examine existing data and, if possible, collect additional data where gaps exist, to document:
    • The pipeline into the profession, specifically the proportion of graduate students who are first-generation/working-class
    • The representation of first-generation/working-class sociologists within each academic rank, and in various types of educational institutions (community colleges, 4-year colleges, state universities, elite private universities)
    • Appointments of first-generation/working-class sociologists in new positions as a share of all appointments, by rank of appointment
    • Comparing first-generation working-class sociologists to their peers within the profession in terms of (a) salaries; (b) appointments to Department Chair and other administrative positions; (c) representation on ASA Council and on the ASA Publications Committee; (d) representation on editorial boards of ASA journals; and (e) FAD grant awardees.
  • Solicit feedback from first-generation/working-class persons in sociology (at every level, from graduate student through full professor status) regarding issues or concerns related to their status within the profession.
  • Review past and present efforts of other scholarly associations to address issues of underrepresentation of first-generation/working class scholars.
  • Make recommendations to ASA Council as to how the Association can best address the challenge of integrating this population into our discipline in a way that maximizes equity.

Thanks to the ASA members who have generously agreed to serve on this important task force:

Chair: Vincent Roscigno, Ohio State University
Council Liaison:  Monica McDermott, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
David Brady, University of California, Riverside
Alondo Campbell, Santa Ana College
Kevin Delaney, Temple University
Roberta Espinoza, Pitzer College
Robert Francis, Johns Hopkins University
Allison Hurst, Oregon State University
Anthony Jack, Harvard University
Wendi Johnson, Oakland University
Colby King, Bridgewater State University
Elizabeth Lee, Ohio University
Deborah Warnock, SUNY Cortland
Staff Liaison: Margaret Weigers Vitullo

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