School of Criminal Justice Celebrates Dean Pridemore’s First 100 Days

100Days

Former Deans Alan Lizotte and Terry Thornberry celebrate with Dean William Alex Pridemore (center).

The University at Albany School of Criminal Justice marked the first 100 days of Dean William Alex Pridemore’s tenure with a celebration of highlights, early successes, and his new initiatives. The School of Criminal Justice has been a leader in the discipline since its inception in 1968, and Dean Pridemore has challenged the School’s faculty, students, and alumni to take that success a step further – to “set the standard” for the field of criminology and criminal justice.

Growing the School’s excellent faculty by hiring outstanding scholars is Dean Pridemore’s first priority, and we have already achieved initial success. Beginning in fall 2016 our faculty will welcome David Hureau. Hureau is finishing his PhD in Sociology at Harvard, where his advisor is noted Albany Criminal Justice PhD alumnus Robert Sampson. His research interests include urban criminology, violence, gangs, and ethnographic methods. Following this fantastic new addition, the School will continue to grow by making further new hires soon.

Under Dean Pridemore’s leadership and as part of the upcoming university-wide fundraising campaign, the School has begun an ambitious fundraising initiative that seeks support for key priorities, including research leadership among faculty, graduate student fellowships and stipends, and undergraduate scholarships. Two recent gifts from alumni speak directly to the powerful impact of private philanthropy. An endowed fellowship created by a $125,000 gift from Bruce Davis, M.A. ’73, will provide graduate student stipends, giving the School a competitive edge in the recruitment of top students from across the country. Another critical need was addressed by a gift from Elizabeth Cass, PhD ’91, and Michael Lynch, PhD ’88, who established a $25,000 endowment to support graduate student travel, allowing doctoral students to showcase their research and gain valuable professional experience at academic conferences.

Dean Pridemore has obtained funds to institute a Drive for Diversity that includes dedicated support to hire a postdoctoral associate who researches topics related to diversity, crime, and justice, to strengthen recruitment of diverse graduate students, and to secure the future of the School’s Justice & Multiculturalism Project and its exploration of issues at the intersection of diversity and social and criminal justice.

Dean Pridemore and the School are expanding interdisciplinary collaboration. The School recently completed a memorandum of understanding with Albany Law School that will allow students to concurrently pursue their Master’s degree in Criminal Justice and their Juris Doctor degree. The School is working with the UAlbany School of Public Health to make a joint hire this fall who will have appointments in both units. The School’s collaborations are also expanding internationally. A team of UAlbany Criminal Justice faculty attended the European Society of Criminology conference in Porto, Portugal, in September to pursue promising avenues to enhance the School’s international reach. Also in September Dean Pridemore gave an invited presentation at the World Health Organization in Geneva, where he cultivated potential collaborations for the School’s faculty and graduate students.

The UAlbany School of Criminal Justice is interdisciplinary, international, innovative, and engaged. We welcome Dean Pridemore and we are excited by these early successes and initiatives that are allowing us to set the standard in criminology and criminal justice.