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44th Annual Western Departments of Anthropology and Sociology Undergraduate Research Conference

On April 29, SCU hosted the 44th annual Western Departments of Anthropology and Sociology Undergraduate Research Conference took place. The conference facilitates communication and professional exchange among students and faculty from colleges and universities throughout the western United States. Faculty and students from the Anthropology and Sociology Departments participate in this much-anticipated event that welcomes undergraduates and their advisors to our campus. The institutions represented this year include University of San Francisco, Saint Mary's College of California, Gettysburg College, Stanford University, CSCU Fresno, UC Santa Cruz, Vanguard University, University of the Pacific and SCU. Students presented original empirical and theoretical research with implications for archeology, ecology, healthcare, gender studies, ethnic studies, the life course, institutions, and social problems.

Gabriel Ignatow, Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Sociology at the University of North Texas, was the keynote speaker at conference. He spoke on “Digital Social Science: Entering a New Era of Challenges and Opportunities.” His keynote address examined the emergent field of study increasingly being called “digital sociology.” Discussing topics including cloud computing, social media, and data mining, he identified major societal and technological trends relevant to social sciences including anthropology and sociology. Professor Ignatow’s talk probed how sociologists, anthropologists, and other social scientists can transition and flourish in a new arena of social sciences informed by new technologies. Ignatow’s talk closed with a discussion of new opportunities for sociologists and anthropologists to engage in high tech fields, work with technologists, and to study technology critically using their social scientific imaginations.

Photos: Top: Sociology majors Karen Robles, Oscar Quiroz-Medrano and Ana Gomez-Perez, presenters at the 44th Annual Western Departments of Anthropology and Sociology Undergraduate Research Conference. Above: Gabriel Ignatow, Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Sociology at the University of North Texas.

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