Dr. Gianna Durso-FinleyWhen Dr. Gianna Durso-Finley is not teaching sociology at Mercer County Community College, you’re likely to find her meeting with students or other faculty members… perhaps discussing the importance of the Sociological Imagination.

Dr. Durso-Finley has been teaching for over 20 years and spent the last 14 years teaching at Mercer County Community College. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, where she graduated cum laude, and earned her master’s degree and PhD from Brown University. Some of the classes she has taught include: Introduction to Sociology (Honors), Social Problems (Honors), The Sociology of Drug Use and Behavior, Crime and Deviance, and Business Ethics.

Sociology helps us answer that age-old question ‘Why do people DO that?’

As the Assistant Dean for American Honors and Professor of Sociology, Dr. Durso-Finley divides her time between sharing her passion for sociology with students and interacting with faculty, administration, and parents who believe in the amazing potential of education to transform lives.

When asked, “Why is sociology important?” Dr. Durso-Finley confidently responds, “Sociology helps us answer that age-old question ‘Why do people DO that?’ in fresh and fascinating ways.” In addition, she comments, “Sociology is not always seen as the most ‘practical’ discipline or course, but with the challenges of the global economy, more and more industries are realizing that knowledge of people, culture, and behavior is absolutely crucial. Market research is a burgeoning field, and even Google hires social scientists to work with their programmers!”

While sociology may not be seen as the “most ‘practical’ discipline or course,” Dr. Durso-Finley hopes that her class has, “made it impossible for her students to watch the news, view a YouTube video, or observe people interacting without bringing the power of the Sociological Imagination to bear on the situation."

Here’s what a recent student had to say about taking Dr. Durso-Finley’s class…

“Honors Social Problems with Dr. Durso-Finley has totally changed the way I look at the world. I am not yet sure that this is a good thing, because it makes things a lot more complicated, and I feel more responsible to get involved now. But I know there’s no going back.”

Seems like Dr. Durso-Finley is achieving her goal - to expand and revise the worldview of students, one class at a time.

Authored by Ruthana Seng

Ruthana helps high-potential students achieve their dreams. She writes about the college application process, from how to pay for college to how many schools to apply to in the first place.