Faculty spotlight

Michelle JacobsProfessor Michelle Jacobs joined the Sociology department as a tenure-track assistant professor in 2016 after receiving her Ph.D. from Kent State University. Her research interests include social inequalities, race and ethnicity, indigenous studies, and qualitative methods.

Professor Jacobs recently published a compelling article in a special issue of Ethnic and Racial Studies called "Resisting and Reifying Racialization Among Urban American Indians," which explores the mechanisms of racialization beyond the Black/White binary. Her research has been published in leading sociology and methods journals such as Symbolic Interaction and Qualitative Sociology.

Currently, she is finishing her first monograph entitled, Off the reservation: the Urban American Indian Experience, which will be published with NYU Press and she is part of a team of Wayne State researchers that were recently awarded a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation's Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S-STEM) initiative.

As part of a new program called ACCESS (Achieving Commuter Engagement and Success), the team will aim to increase the retention and six-year graduation rates of commuter students in engineering while providing insight into factors that affect how commuters engage with the campus community.

A favorite instructor among graduate and undergraduate students alike, Professor Jacobs teaches courses on Social Inequalities (SOC 3300), an Advanced Seminar in Race/Ethnicity (SOC 8710), and Understanding Human Societies (SOC 2000).