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Moravian College Sociology Department
Sociology and Anthropology



Daniel Jasper | Associate Professor and Department Chair

Office location: PPHAC 316
Office phone: 610-625-7882

Research interests and expertise
Dr. Jasper is a cultural sociologists whose research focuses on religious and political identity in western India.  His work investigates how the past is remembered and celebrated as a means to articulate meaningful identities in the present.

Areas of Interest:  Cultural sociology, Sociology of Religion (especially the relationship between religion and politics), Social Theory (Classical and Contemporary, especially Critical Theory), Peace and Justice, South Asia.  Dr. Jasper’s primary research focuses upon the intersection of state, society, and religion, with an emphasis on the interplay between religious, regional, and political identity in western India.  He also has a research interest on memoir, particularly as it relates to Peace and Justice.  He serves as the co-director of the Peace and Justice Studies program at Moravian.



Akbar Keshodkar | Assistant Professor of Anthropology; Director, Africana Studies Program

Office location: PPHAC 311
Office phone: 610-861-1685

Research interests and expertise
Dr. Keshodkar's research interests lie in examining the impact of socio-economic processes associated with globalization and modernization on formulations of Muslim identities and heritage in sub-Saharan Africa and western Indian Ocean societies.

Dr. Keshodkar is currently working on two projects—one focused on exploring trans-national social/cosmopolitan networks across the Indian Ocean, and the other analyzing the relationship between tourism, development and cultural change in Muslim societies. He teaches courses in Modern African History and Society, Africana Studies, Anthropology, Sociology and Indian Ocean Studies. Topics of his courses include identity politics, movement of identities, tourism and development, trans-nationalism, comparative sociology, globalization and anthropological research methods.


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Virginia Adams O'Connell | Associate Professor

Office location: PPHAC 315
Office phone: 610-625-7756

Research interests and expertise
Medical sociology (with a concentration on the profession of medicine, medical education, and bioethics), Research Methods (focusing on the dialogue between quantitative and qualitative methodologies), Survey Development, Research Ethics, the Sociology of Law, and Demography.

Dr. Adams O’Connell has served on the American Sociological Association (ASA) Ethics Committee and currently serves on the ASA Sociology of Law Undergraduate Paper Committee. She also served on the Greenville Hospital System’s (Greenville, South Carolina) MedEx Academy Development Committee. She is the author of the book Getting Cut: Failing to Survive Surgical Residency Training (University Press of America), and has also authored several book chapters, articles in peer-reviewed journals and conference presentations. Current projects include a multi-institutional study of the training and practice expectations of premedical students, and a study on the unmet medical needs of the clientele of an urban food bank.



Debra Wetcher-Hendricks | Associate Professor

Office location: PPHAC 314
Office phone: 610-861-1415

Research interests and expertise
Wetcher-Hendricks' primary academic endeavors relate to research methodology, particularly quantitative data analysis. Other areas of interest, based upon her own academic background, include gender studies, interpersonal communication and classroom pedagogy.

Dr. Wetcher-Hendricks received her B.A. from Glassboro State College and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Lehigh University. Her main areas of interest are social research, statistical methods, interpersonal and mass communication, and gender relations. Courses that Dr. Wetcher-Hendricks regularly teaches include Basic Research Methods, Advanced Research Methods, Sociology of Gender, and Media Technology and Society. Her areas of interest are:  social research and statistical methods, including mathematical modeling, interpersonal and mass communication. She has written a textbook entitled Analyzing Quantitative Data: An Introduction for Social Researchers. She has been listed in various editions of Marquis Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who Among American Women, and Who’s Who in the World since 2008.



Esther Hio-Tong Castillo | Visiting Professor

Office location: PPHAC 312
Office phone: 610-861-1378

Research interests and expertise
Urban Sociology, Globalization, Sociology of Culture, Sociological Theory, China

Dr. Esther Hio-Tong Castillo specializes in urban sociology and globalization studies. Her research interests include urban political economy; public culture; and social movements. Her current research examines the ways in which various forms of political discourses interact with people's social life and shape urban social movements in Macau, China from the 1990s to the present. Her teaching interests are broad: she has taught courses on race, immigration, globalization and development, urban sociology, as well as introductory sociology.



Dr. Joyce Dougherty | Professor of Practice

Office location: PPHAC 214
Office phone: 6106-25-7119

Research interests and expertise
Dr. Dougherty’s primary research interests include evidence-based prisoner reentry programming, recidivism reduction, and gender-responsive programming and trauma-informed care for women offenders.

From 1998-2015, Dr. Joyce Dougherty served as the Executive Director of THE PROGRAM for Women and Families, a non-profit agency that specialized in serving the reentry needs of adult offenders in the Lehigh Valley. In 2010 and 2011 she secured two consecutive federal Bureau of Justice Assistance Second Chance Act grants to support the Family Reunification Reentry Initiative targeting women offenders in Lehigh County. And in 2011 she presented two papers at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology in Washington D.C.: Program Design: A Gender Responsive Approach to Reducing Recidivism and Barriers to Successful Reentry: Navigating the Ideological Shift from Being ‘Tough on Crime’ to Being ‘Smart on Crime’. From 2009-2011 she served on the Pennsylvania Joint State Government Commission’s Advisory Committee to Review the Effects on Children of Incarcerated Parents and she currently is serving as a member of the newly formed Pennsylvania Reentry Council chaired by the state’s Executive Deputy Attorney General. In 2015, Dr. Dougherty successfully negotiated the merger of THE PROGRAM for Women and Families with the non-profit agency, Pinebrook Family Answers, forming that agency’s new Forensic Services Department. This strategic move not only ensured the continuation of the good work of THE PROGRAM, it positioned that work to expand to more effectively meet the needs of the clients served. Today Dr. Dougherty serves as the Forensic Services Department’s grant writer and project coordinator on a part-time basis.


Prior to assuming the position of Executive Director of THE PROGRAM for Women and Families, she was a tenured professor at Moravian College serving as the head of the college’s Criminal Justice Program and as Chair of the Department of Sociology. During her tenure at the College, beginning in 1982, she published peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on topics ranging from effective reentry programming for women offenders to a comparative analysis of adult plea bargaining and juvenile intake. She earned her B.A. in Sociology and Political Philosophy, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from Syracuse University.

Affiliated Faculty

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Joel Nathan Rosen | Associate Professor of Sociology and Anthropology; Program Director, Communication and Media Studies

Office location: Benigna Hall, Room 215
Office phone: 610-625-7814
Personal website:

Research interests and expertise
Media in Culture; American Popular Music (especially the blues and its related genres); Sport; Celebrity and Reputation; Moral Panics in the Media; American and African-American Culture; and the American South

Joel Nathan Rosen (Associate Professor of Sociology) is Program Director in Communications and Media Studies at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. His research is premised on the relationship between human activity and human efficacy as portrayed in media and as demonstrated through such cultural idioms as sport, music, comedy, and other areas that intersect celebrity. He is the author of The Erosion of the American Sporting Ethos: Shifting Attitudes toward Competition (McFarland) and From New Lanark to Mound Bayou: Owenism in the Mississippi Delta (Carolina Academic Press), is coeditor of and a contributor to a multi-volume series that explores the relationship between sport and celebrity (University Press of Mississippi), and has been published in such varied journals and anthologies as The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2009-2010, The Sociology of Sport Journal, The Journal of Mundane Behavior, NINE: A Journal of Baseball History and Culture, The Journal of Sport History, and Media History Monographs.

Adjunct Faculty 

Honorable Judge Emil Giordano (2005)

B.A., Moravian College
J.D., Villanova University

Attorney Kimberly Goodge-Makoul (2006)

B.A., Moravian College
J.D., Widener University

Ashley Heiberger, J.D. (2006)

B.A., Moravian College
J.D., Widener University

Ashley Heiberger is currently a Senior Policy Advisor at Rosenbaum & Associates, LLP, providing expert advice on police management practices and on training relevant to use of force. He previously worked for the Bethlehem Police Department (1996-2017), where he has served in the roles of Captain (2013-2017), Staff Captain (2013), Lieutenant (2008-2013), Sergeant (2004-2008) and Patrol Officer (1996-2004). During his career in law enforcement, he has also served in leadership positions with the FBI, the International Associations of Chiefs of Police and the PA Chiefs of Police Association. Since 2009, he has also served as a senior trainer for the Cops and Community Program, facilitating police-community workshops designed by the National Coalition Building Institute. He teaches courses on policing, criminal law and evidence.

Dr. Scott Hoke (2014)

B.A., Moravian College
PhD., Temple University 

Andrew McIntosh (2012)

Vincent Ramunni (1998)

B.A., Moravian College
M.S., Shippensburg University

Vince P. Ramunni received a BA degree from Moravian College in 1990 and an MS from Shippensburg University in 1994. He has taught as an adjunct professor at Moravian since 1998. After many years of service to the Northampton County Juvenile Court, Vince became licensed by the Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine as a behavior specialist, serving the behavioral health needs of children and their families, with a particular focus on the treatment of autism.

Attorney Frances Sonne (2006)

B.A., Pennsylvania State University
J.D., Temple University

Joseph Williams, M.S.W. (1982)

B.A., Moravian College
M.S.W., Ohio State University