Sandi Nenga

Notable Achievements

Associate Professor of Sociology Reggie Byron, Professor of Sociology Maria Lowe, Professor of Sociology Sandi Nenga, and five students attended the annual meeting of the Southern Sociological Society in New Orleans, La., April 4–7.  

  • Madeline Carrola, class of 2019, presented “’We’re Not Wasting Coffee Grounds’: How College Students Respond to Peers’ Resource Consumption and Waste Disposal by Social Class.”
  • Sophia Galewsky, class of 2018, presented “Abortion Provision as High Risk Activism: What Motivates Providers?”
  • Mary Jalufka, class of 2018, presented “White Female Elementary School Teachers and Campus Safety in the Wake of Sandy Hook.”
  • Esteffany Luna, class of 2018, presented “Am I Still Latino Enough? The Construction of a Latino Identity among Hispanics who do not Speak Spanish.” Luna’s paper was also the recipient of the 2018 Odum Undergraduate Paper Award. This marks the 9th time in 13 years that a Southwestern sociology senior has won this award.
  • Dr. Byron co-organized a panel titled “Innovative Uses of Data in the Study of Workplace Discrimination” and presented a co-authored paper titled “Bureaucratic Legitimation, Discrimination, and the Racialized Character of Organizational Life.”
  • Dr. Nenga served as a presider for multiple sessions at the meeting.
  • Dr. Lowe and Dakota Cortez,class of 2019, presented “Race and Contested Public Spaces in a Liberal Predominantly White Planned Urban Community.”
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Expertise

Children and youth; social class; volunteer work and civic engagement; qualitative methods

Dr. Nenga conducts research in the sociology of children and youth, the lived experience of social class, and social aspects of education. She is currently working on a paper with Kathryn Gold Hadley of Hanover College about positive youth development programs for Southeast Asian youth. In addition, Dr. Nenga is studying a college readiness program for first-generation, primarily Latina/o high school students with Mayra Garcia (’11), Whitney Rodriguez Rominger (’11), Susi Contreras (’14) and Isaac Bernal (’13). She also worked with students Lauren Cox (’08) and Tristine Baccam (’09) on an ethnographic investigation of a middle school summer camp.

She has received multiple awards over her career, including Southwestern’s Teaching Award for untenured faculty in 2011 and Excellence in Academic Advising Award in 2007. 

Nenga received her PhD from Indiana University in 2004, her MA from San Francisco State University in 1997, and her BA from Simon’s Rock College in 1992.

  • Dr. Nenga conducts research in the sociology of children and youth, the lived experience of social class, and social aspects of education. She is currently working on a paper with Kathryn Gold Hadley of Hanover College about positive youth development programs for Southeast Asian youth. In addition, Dr. Nenga is studying a college readiness program for first-generation, primarily Latina/o high school students with Mayra Garcia (’11), Whitney Rodriguez Rominger (’11), Susi Contreras (’14) and Isaac Bernal (’13). She also worked with students Lauren Cox (’08) and Tristine Baccam (’09) on an ethnographic investigation of a middle school summer camp.

    She has received multiple awards over her career, including Southwestern’s Teaching Award for untenured faculty in 2011 and Excellence in Academic Advising Award in 2007. 

    Nenga received her PhD from Indiana University in 2004, her MA from San Francisco State University in 1997, and her BA from Simon’s Rock College in 1992.

  • Hurst, Allison L. and Sandi Kawecka Nenga, eds. 2016. Working in Class: Recognizing How Social Class Shapes Our Academic Work. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka, Guillermo A. Alvarado (’15) and Claire S. Blyth (’16). 2015. “‘I Kind of Found My People’: Latino/a College Students’ Search for Social Integration on Campus.” Pp. 29-45 in College Students’ Experiences of Power and Marginality: Sharing Spaces and Negotiating Differences, edited by E.M. Lee and C. LaDousa. New York: Routledge.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka and Jessica K. Taft, eds. 2013. Sociological Studies of Children and Youth: Youth Engagement: The Civic-Political Lives of Children and Youth, Vol. 16. Bingley, UK: Emerald.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka. 2012. “Not The Community, But A Community: Transforming Youth Into Citizens Through Volunteer Work.” Journal of Youth Studies 15(8): 1063-1077.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka and Lauren A. Apgar. 2011. “The Age of Love: Dating and the Developmental Discourse in a Middle School Summer Camp.” Pp. 109-131 in Sociological Studies of Children and Youth, vol. 14, edited by L.E. Bass and D.A. Kinney. Bingley, UK: Emerald.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka. 2011. “Volunteering to Give Up Privilege? How Affluent Youth Volunteers Respond to Class Privilege.” Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 40(3):263-289.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka and Tristine P. Baccam. 2010. “Stealing Peanuts and Coercing Energy Drinks: The Underground Economy of a Middle School Summer Camp.” Qualitative Sociology Review 6(2):105-125.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka. 2010. “The Value of Volunteering: Comparing Youths’ Experiences to Popular Claims.” Pp. 295-318 in Sociological Studies of Children and Youth: Children and Youth Speak for Themselves, vol. 13, edited by H.B. Johnson. Bingley, UK: Emerald.

    Hadley, Kathryn Gold and Sandi Kawecka Nenga. 2004. “From Snow White to Digimon: Using Popular Media to Confront Confucian Values in Taiwanese Peer Cultures.” Childhood: A Global Journal of Child Research 11(4): 515-536.

    Nenga, Sandi Kawecka. 2003. “Social Class and Structures of Feeling in Women’s Childhood Memories of Clothing, Food and Leisure.” Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 32(2): 167-199.

    Eder, Donna and Sandi Kawecka Nenga. 2003. “Socialization in Adolescence.” Pp. 157-182 in J. DeLamater, (Ed.), Handbook of Social Psychology. New York: Kluwer-Plenum.