Degree & Year in the Program
4th Year PhD Student
Kelsy Burke and Kirk Dombrowski
Areas of Specialization
Social Movements, Immigration, Gender and Sexuality
Comprehensive Exam Area
I entered the PhD program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln after receiving an MA in Psychology from West Texas A&M University and a BA in English from Middle Tennessee State University. I am currently a research assistant in the Research, Evaluation and Analysis for Community Health (REACH) Lab at UNL and I also teach Gender in Contemporary Society in the Sociology department.
My research, broadly defined, examines organizational logics and intersecting inequalities with special attention to gender, sexuality, and citizenship. My dissertation is focused on examining the role of organizations ranging from non-profits and government entities to small businesses active in immigration policy debates in the Great Plains–a region that has recently experienced a rapid growth in Latinx population. The vast majority of social science research and corresponding insight has been gained through analysis of the movement in traditional border states (e.g. California, Arizona, New Mexico), and my research seeks to fill a gap in our understanding of how this movement operates in both rural and urban locations in the Midwest. As a researcher whose interest is most piqued by organizational behavior, I am especially interested in understanding how various types of organizations determine their involvement in the movement and their methods for selecting tactics and targets for their efforts.
I also pursue my interest in understanding social change through my work with a team in the REACH Lab examining changes in culture and configurations of capital in rural Nebraska. Through this lens we consider how governing ideology has changed with respect to power and capital and the resultant impact on local communities. This project is centrally concerned with understanding the importance of historical context and the power of ideology. Musings associated with this project and other contemporary social science reflections can be found on The Beat.
Soci 101: Introduction to Sociology
Soci 200: Gender in Contemporary Society