Alexander Stoner Assistant Professor of Sociology

Alexander Stoner, Ph.D.

Department Head and Associate Professor of Sociology 906-227-1687
Office Location:

2412 Jamrich Hall

Malorie E Albee Assistant Professor

Malorie E. Albee, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Anthropology 906-227-1148
Office Location:

JxJ 2415

Dr. Yan Cuipak

Yan Z. Ciupak, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Sociology 906-227-1158
Office Location:

2416 Jamrich Hall

Scott Demel

Scott Demel, Ph.D

Professor of Anthropology 906-227-2843
Office Location:

2410 Jamrich Hall

Office Location:

2313 Jamrich Hall (Lab)

Dr. Jane Harris

Jane Harris, Ph.D.

Director of FROST/FARL 906-227-6411
Body Donation Program Coordinator - Carley Leanes:


Office Location:

2409 Jamrich Hall

Photo Stand In

Susan Henderson

Department Secretary 906-227-2706
Office Location:

2400 Jamrich Hall

Meghan McCune Assistant Professor of Sociology

Meghan Y. McCune, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Anthropology 906-227-2030
Office Location:

JxJ 2411

Rexin Yang

Renxin Yang, Ph.D.

Professor of Sociology 906-227-1120
Office Location:

2413 Jamrich Hall

Full Bios

Courses taught at Northern Michigan University

AN110: Introduction to Anthropology
AN295: Fundamentals of Biological Anthropology 

AN295: Human Evolution

AN365: Forensic Anthropology

AN473/595: Human Osteology

AN495/595: Special Topics in Biological Anthropology (various courses):
Culture and the Human Body



2022 Ph.D. (Anthropology), The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

2014    M.Sc. (Bioarchaeology/Human Osteology), University of Exeter, Exeter, UK

2013    B.S. (Archeology, Experience Design), University of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN


Teaching Philosophy

My teaching focuses on student-centered, critical compassionate pedagogy. This pedagogy works to identify barriers to student learning that are inherent to the university structure and remove them wherever possible. When these barriers are removed, all students benefit, and students can adopt a growth mindset rather than focusing on memorization of content.

Academic Interests

  • Bioarchaeology
  • Interactions between cultural practices and the human body
  • Modern human variation of the skeleton, particularly the foot
  • Paleopathology, especially congenital conditions



Albee, Malorie E. (2023). Take a load off: skeletal implications of sedentism in the feet of modern body donors. Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health 11(1):485-501. DOI: 10.1093/emph/eoad041

Albee, Malorie E. 2023. A test of the New Coimbra method of recording entheseal changes as applied to the foot skeleton. International Journal of Osteoarchaelogy, 1-14.

Albee, Malorie E. 2022. Tarsal metric trends over the Medieval-Post-Medieval transition in London. HOMO - Journal of Comparative Human Biology. DOI: 10.1127/homo/2022/1551

Albee, Malorie E. 2020. Diagnosing tarsal coalition in medieval Exeter. International Journal of Paleopathology 28:32-41. DOI:10.1016/j.ijpp.2019.11.005

Select Recent Presentations

2022 Albee, Malorie E. The foot and shoe as reciprocal companions: two osteological examples. UC Santa Cruz Graduate Student Conference in Anthropology, Online.


2022 Albee, Malorie E. A test of the Coimbra method of recording entheseal changes as applied to the foot skeleton. American Association of Biological Anthropologists, Denver, Colorado and Online. DOI: 10.1002/ajpa.24514.


2019 Albee, Malorie E. and Lagan, E. The Anthropology Public Outreach Program at The Ohio State University: A model for orchestrating anthropology encounters for the general public. Transformations Graduate Conference, Wayne State University, Michigan.



Dr. Yan Zhao Ciupak is an Associate Professor of Sociology at Northern Michigan University. She served as the institution’s Faculty Director for International Partnership and Initiatives and founded the Grief Support Specialist program. She is the recipient of the “Diversity Scholar” from the National Center for Institutional Diversity, which recognizes her contribution to social and institutional diversity. She has an extensive list of national and international publications and presentations to her credit. She was interviewed on TV, radio, and other platforms and given academic talks and workshops on various topics. As a Grief Support Specialist, a certified Yoga Instructor, and a meditation practitioner, she advocates for mindfulness-based integrative pedagogies and care. Her current projects include a contracted book <End-of-Life and Grief Support: Principles, Tools, and Cases> to be published by Springer Publishing Company, a project on <Empowering Himalayan Nuns>, and research related to college students’ wellbeing. She loves working with students to support their research, academic, and holistic well-being.

Current Courses Taught at NMU

  • SO101: Introduction to Sociology
  • SO232: Family and Intimate Relationships
  • SO/SW308: Research Methods in Social Sciences II
  • SO/AN 312: Religion and Society
  • SO355: Social Psychology
  • SO/SW423/SW523: Death, Dying, and Grief
  • SO498: Directed Study


  • Ph.D. University at Buffalo (SUNY-Buffalo/UB), 2009
  • B.A. Shandong University-Main Campus, Jinan, China July 2001

Teaching and Professional History

  • 2013 to current: NMU Associate Professor, Grief Support Specialist Certificate Program
    Founder and Instructor (2019-)
  • 2012-2020: NMU Assistant Professor, Faculty Director for International Initiatives (2016-2017)
  • 2010-2011: Liberal Studies Department, Kettering University, Flint, MI.
  • 2003-2006: University at Buffalo (SUNY-Buffalo), Buffalo, NY, Presidential Scholar
  • 2001-2003: Shandong University, Weihai, China. Lecturer, Researcher

Research Interest:
Death, Dying, Grief; Spirituality and Religion, Mindfulness, College Students Wellbeing.

Current Projects:

  • A contracted book: <End-of-Life and Grief Support: Principles, Tools, and Cases>
    • This book will be translated into Chinese after publication in English
    • There will be a companion book <Supporting Children and Adolescence in
  • A book tentatively entitled <Living, Dying, and Being: A Buddhist Lama’s Insights>
  • A co-authored article on contemporary coffee culture.
  • Mindfulness-based pedagogy and intervention for college students’ wellbeing.
  • Empowering Himalayan Nuns (Gender inequality in religion)

Research is fun and cool! I love involving students in research and publication projects or
mentoring their own research. Students report enjoying and gaining valuable experience working closely with me as their research mentor. Feel free to contact me to chat if you are interested!

Selected Publications:

  • Ciupak, Y. &amp; Smith, D. (Forthcoming). End-of-Life and Grief Support: Principles, Tools, and Cases. Springer.
  • Ciupak, Y. (2016). On the nexus of local and global: Chinese higher education and college
    students in the era of globalization. New York: AMC Press 
  • Weis, L., Zhao, Y., et al. (2008). Sociology of education: A review of four decades of empirical research in the United States, 1966-2008. Buffalo, NY: GSE Publication, SUNY Press. 
  • Zhao, Y. (Ed.) (2006). A Collection of Western Educational Research. Hong Kong: Tian Ma
    Publishing House.


  • Ciupak, Y. (2019) Asian-American Families. In Macmillan Encyclopedia of Intimate and Family Relationships. New York, NY: Gale, a part of Cengage
  • Ciupak, Y. (2018) Architecture of Capitals: A Rigorous Qualitative Inquiry Framework and Its
    Application in China. A chapter in Wang Chen, Xu Li, and Edward St. John (Eds.) Higher
    education and social justice: U.S. and Chinese perspectives. New York: Routledge.
  • Ciupak, Y. (2015). Education of immigrants & children: A review of four decades of empirical research in the United States 1965-2011. In Some &amp; Pierre (Eds.) Immigration and schooling: Redefining the 21st Century America. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.
  • Ciupak, Y. & Stich, A. (2012). The changing educational opportunity structure in China. In L. Weis &amp; N. Dolby (Eds.) Social Class and Education: Global Perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Weis, L., Ciupak, Y., et al. (2011). Sociology of Education in the United States. In S.Tozer,
    B.Gallegos & A.Henry (Eds.) Handbook of Research in the Social Foundations of Education. New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Zhao, Y. (2006). Critical theories in Sociology of Education: Dynamics, debates, and directions. In Yan Zhao (Ed.), A Collection of Western Educational Research (pp. 1- 34). Hong Kong: Tian Ma Publishing House


  • Parliament of the World's Religions: Empowering Himalayan Nuns (Pre-recorded Panel and live audience Q/A) Nov. 2021
  • Studies on Bardos: The Buddhist View of Dying and Being, American Death Education and
    Counseling/ Thanatology Association Conference (ADEC) Apr. 2021
  • A Longitudinal Qualitative Study of Chinese Mobility in an Era of Change. Paper Presented at the Annual Conference of North Central Sociology Association (NCSA), Apr.7, 2021
  • The Effects of a Planner-aided and Mindfulness- Based Positive Psychology Training on College Students’ Wellbeing and Self-efficacy During Covid-19. Paper presented at the 22nd Annual American Association of Behavioral &amp; Social Science Conference (AABSS). June 2nd, 2021 (co-authored)
  • Architecture of Capitals: A rigorous qualitative inquiry framework. Proceedings from
    Sociological Association Annual Meeting (ASA) 2018. Philadelphia, PA.

Professor Scott Demel is on sabbatical for the 2021-2022 school year


Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (major in Archaeology, minor in Geology)
MA     University of Illinois at Chicago
BS     University of Wisconsin-Madison

Courses Taught by Dr. Demel 

AN 101  Introduction to Physical Anthropology & Archaeology (2 sessions)
AN 265  Archaeology of the Ancient Americas
AN 295  Ancient Mesoamerican Civilizations
AN 295  Cultural Resource Management
AN 315  Myth, Mystery, and Fraud in Anthropology
AN 355  Seminar in Archaeological Field Methods (archaeology field school)
AN 375  Archaeology Lab Methods
AN 390  Museum Studies
AN 420  Experimental Archaeology
AN 430  Historical Archaeology
AN 440  History of Anthropology
AN 450  Forensic Anthropology
AN 495  Special Topics in Anthropology (various courses):
              ​Prehistoric Archaeology Field & Lab Methods
​              Museum Studies I & II    
              Myth, Mystery, and Fraud in Anthropology
              Forensic Anthropology (with CJ instructor)
AN 498  Directed Studies (various topics)
              Health, Society, and Culture
              Physical/Biological & Economic Anthropology
              Great Lakes Faunal Analysis
              Archaeology of China
              Ancient Mesoamerican Farming Methods
              Archaeology Lab Collections Management Methods
              McNair Scholar Research
              Lithic Analysis
              Faunal Analysis

Teaching and Professional History

2015-Present: NMU Associate Professor
2009-2014: NMU Assistant Professor
2001-2009: The Field Museum. Department of Anthropology, Head of Collections

Research and Teaching Interests

Geographic areas: North America/Great Lakes/Midwest/​Coastal and Island Archaeology

I am interested in how different ethnic groups have used the Great Lakes throughout prehistory and into the mid 19th century. To fully understand the opportunities available along these inland coasts I also study all aspects of the natural environment and cultural landscape to learn how humans have adapted to this dynamic landscape.

Prior to coming to NMU I worked for eight years at The Field Museum in Chicago where I was the Head of Collections for the Department of Anthropology. This position afforded me the opportunity to study firsthand the intricate details of material culture of ethnic groups from around the globe. I also had the opportunity to meet with indigenous representatives that were seeking to repatriate objects or remains, and to be trained in the use of analytical equipment such as an X-ray fluorescence (XRF) elemental analyzer. During this period I also taught courses in archaeology and co-directed archaeology field schools for DePaul University.

Some of the archaeological sites I have worked on or with include:

                   The Mt. Mesnard Site (1890s red sandstone quarry and Archaic quartzite quarry site), Marquette, MI
                   The Goose Lake Outlet #3 Site, Marquette, MI (lithic analysis)
                   The Theodore Protar Homestead, Beaver Island, MI
                   The Cable's Bay Fishing Village, Beaver Island, MI
                   The Egbert/Burke Farmstead, Beaver Island, MI
​                   The Mormon Print Shop - Isle du Castor Site (Late Woodland, Contact Period, Mormon occupation), Beaver Island, MI
                   Relocating Camp Douglas - Civil War Prison (Chicago)
                   The Tetter Homestead – Kankakee IL (reconstruction era)
                   Pullman State Historic Site - Chicago (early industrial)
                   The Kubinski Site - a Middle Woodland Ossuary (Romeoville, IL)
                   The Brewster Creek Mastodon (DuPage County, IL)
                   Chicago's Lakefront Archaeology Project - Museum Campus (IL)
                   Chinatown Museum Project/Chinatown (Chicago IL)

Recent and Current Work

  • Participated in the Marquette Regional History Center's Archaeology Fair in October, 2019
  • Attended the annual Midwest Archaeological Conference (2017), and the Conference on Michigan Archaeology.
  • Presented co-authored paper at the Society for American Archaeology conference in April 2015; The Goose Lake Outlet #3 Site - A Proto-historic site in the Western Great Lakes Region.

Selected Publications & Conference Presentations


Demel, Scott J. (2014). Cultural Features at the New Lenox Site in The Late Prehistoric and Proto-Historic Components at the New Lenox Site, Illinois; edited by Rochelle Lurie (submitted, under revision).

Lurie, Rochelle, Doug Kullen, and Scott J. Demel (2009).  Defining the Archaic in Northern Illinois – In Archaic Societies – Diversity and Complexity Across the Midcontinent; edited by Thomas E. Emerson, Dale L. McElrath, and Andrew C. Fortier (Albany: State University of New York Press, March 2009)

Journal Articles:

Legg, Robert J.a, Joyce Neilsonc, and Scott J. Demelb (2020). Novel use of cathodoluminescence to identify differences in source rocks for late PalaeoIndian quartzite tools in Archaeometry.

Legg, Robert J., and Scott J. Demel (2019). Ground Penetrating Radar in the northern Great Lakes: a trial survey of a Contact Period occupation in Marquette County, Michigan in Midcontinental Journal of Archaeology, Published online, December 2019; Volume 45, 2020 - Issue 1.


Demel, Scott J. (2016).  Acculturation processes on "island time" - The Late Woodland to Proto-historic transition and early historical period on Beaver Island in Midcontinental Journal of Archaeology (submitted).

Demel, Scott J. (2013). Cahokia Borrow Pit 5-1A in Illinois Archaeology, Illinois Archeological Survey, Inc., vol. 25, pp. 75-105.

Demel, Scott J. (2009). Brewster Creek Mastodon Camp!: Engaging Teens & Teachers in Scientific Inquiry, DuPage County, Illinois in Current Research in the Pleistocene; vol. 26: (submitted).

Pestle, William, Scott J. Demel, Michael Colvard, and Robert Pickering. (2007). Skeletal Biology and Mortuary Practice at the Kubinski Site (11-WI-1186), a Middle Woodland Ossuary in Illinois Archaeology; vol. 19: 47-84.

Demel, Scott J. (2007). Three Rediscovered Clovis Points From The Field Museum Collections in Current Research in the Pleistocene; vol. 24: 76-77.

Recent Conference Presentations:

2016 Presented Acculturation processes on "island time" - The Late Woodland to Proto-historic transition and early historical period on Beaver Island at the annual Midwest Archaeological Conference (2016).

2015 Presented The Goose Lake Outlet #3 Site (20MQ140), a proto-historic site in the Western Great Lakes region at the annual Midwest Archaeological Conference (2015); co-authors include: Marla Buckmaster, Terrance Martin, Jim Paquette, and Kathryn Parker.

2015 Presented co-authored paper at the Society for American Archaeology conference in April; The Goose Lake Outlet #3 Site - A Proto-historic site in the Western Great Lakes Region.

2013 Midwest Archaeological Conference. Session - Late Prehistoric Period Studies: Ohio Valley and Michigan: MPS – Isle de Castor Site – A Seasonal Late Woodland Camp on Beaver Island, Lake Michigan.

2012 Midwest Archaeological Conference. Invited Symposium: In Memorium: Robert Hall, Doyen of Midwestern Archaeology – Popcorn, Cahokia’s Sense of Place, and Great Lakes Archaeology.

2012 Society for American Archaeology (SAA), Memphis, TN. Session: Historic Archaeology of Eastern North America - Fishermen and Farmers: An Archaeological Look at Life on Beaver Island, Lake Michigan during the mid-19th century.

2011 Midwest Archaeological Conference (MAC) La Crosse, WI. Session: Historic Archaeology - Artifact Density, Distribution, and Displacement in the Dunal Environment of the ca. 1848-1860s Cable’s Bay Fishing Village, Beaver Island, Lake Michigan.

2010 Society for American Archaeology (SAA), St. Louis, MO. Session: The Late Prehistoric and Proto-Historic Components at the New Lenox Site - The Interpretation of Cultural Features and Structures at the New Lenox Site (11-Wi-213), a 15th-17th Century Site Near Chicago, Illinois. 

Professor of Forensic Anthropology and Director of FROST/FARL.

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  • Ph.D. Anthropology – Michigan State University (2015)
  • M.A. Anthropology – Michigan State University (2006)
  • B.A. Anthropology and Sociology – Wells College (2003)

Academic Interests

  • Indigenous sovereignty - Haudenosaunee land rights and economic development
  • Legal anthropology - federal policy and Indigenous law
  • Whiteness, social class, and intersectionality
  • Discourse analysis
  • Resource extraction, labor, and identity

Teaching History

  • 2021-present: Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Northern Michigan University
  • 2017-2021: Associate Professor of Anthropology and Sociology, SUNY Jamestown Community College
  • 2013-2017: Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Sociology, SUNY Jamestown Community College
  • 2009-2013: Lecturer of Anthropology and Sociology, SUNY Jamestown Community College
  • 2008-2009: Visiting Lecturer of Anthropology, Alma College
  • 2006 and 2008-2009: Lecturer of Anthropology, Michigan State University
  • 2006-2007: Visiting Lecturer of First Nations and Indigenous Studies and International Studies, Wells College


“’No Sovereign Nation, No Reservation’: Framing Haudenosaunee Sovereignty through Land Claim Discourse.”  Book manuscript under review by University of Nebraska Press “Anthropology of Contemporary North America” series. 

“‘It’s a Question of Fairness’: Fee-to-Trust and Opposition to Haudenosaunee Land Rights and Economic Development.” In Gambling on Authenticity: Gaming, the Noble Savage, and the Not-So-New Indian  Eds. Rebecca Gerkin and Julie Peltier. Michigan State University Press. 2017.

Select Recent Presentations

“Seneca Decolonization and the “State” of Salamanca: The Changing Relationship between a Native Nation, a Congressional Village, and New York State.” Paper presented at the 117th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, San Jose, C.A., November 18th, 2018.

“Decolonizing Seneca History: Collaborative Course Design between the Seneca Nation of Indians and SUNY.” Poster presented at the 116th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Washington, D.C., December 1st, 2017.

“Collaborative Course Design between SUNY and the Seneca Nation of Indians.” Paper presented at the 77th Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology, Santa Fe, NM, April 1st, 2017.

“Displacing Seneca to Protect Pittsburgh: Seneca Voices 50 Years after the Construction of the Kinzua Dam.” Paper Presented at the 75th Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology, Pittsburgh, PA, March 27th, 2015. 

“Haudenosaunee Land Rights in an Era of Judicial Termination.” Paper presented at the 74th Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology, Albuquerque, NM, March 21st, 2014.


I joined the NMU department of sociology & anthropology Fall, 2018. I teach introductory and upper-level courses on environment, food, social inequality, theory, and social change. I am the director of the Food, Environment, and Society (FES) minor program at NMU. My research examines political-economic drivers of and societal responses to global climate change. My book (co-authored with Andony Melathopoulos), Freedom in the Anthropocene: Twentieth-Century Helplessness in the Face of Climate Change, was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2015 (reviewed in Contemporary Sociology). My research has been published in a wide array of academic journals, including Critical Sociology, Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Paragrana: Internationale Zeitschrift für Historische Anthropologie, Ecological Economics, Capitalism, Nature, Socialism, The Journal of World-Systems Research, Social Forces, and Logos, among others. 


Current Courses Taught at NMU

SO101: Introduction to Sociology

SO120: Introduction to Food Studies

SO322: Social Class, Power, and Mobility

SO351: Social Change

SO407: Sociological Theory

SO433: Environmental Sociology

SO498: Directed Study



2013, Ph.D. (Sociology), University of Tennessee, Knoxville

2010, M.A. (Sociology), University of Tennessee, Knoxville

2007, B.S. (Sociology & Philosophy), Bradley University


Teaching Philosophy

In all my courses, my approach to teaching is rooted in the conviction that every student will benefit from learning to think sociologically, and that this thinking emerges through active engagement with curriculum material as opposed to static memorization of sociological facts and concepts. By using multiple teaching techniques and exploring specific topics and issues, students participate in learning the fundamental dimensions of sociology as a discipline: theory, power, ideology, inequality, socialization, and group dynamics at both the micro and macro level of analysis.


Research Interests

Substantive areas: Sociological Theory (Classical & Contemporary); Environmental Sociology; Political Economy


Specialty Areas: Political Economy of the Environment; Climate Change; Critical Social Theory; Globalization; Social Justice & Social Change; Political Sociology


Select Publications:

Google Scholar 


Stoner, A. M. and Dahms, H. F. (2023). Freedom and Heteronomy in the Anthropocene. Paragrana: International Journal of Historical Anthropology, Vol. 33, pp. 39-52.


Stoner, A. M. (2022). Marx, Critical Theory, and the Treadmill of Production of Value: Why Environmental Sociology Needs a Critique of Capital. Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Vol. 37, pp. 89-110.


Johnson, K. E. and A. M. Stoner (2021) “Neoliberal managed care and the changing nature of social work practice: Exploring the relationship between authoritarianism and burnout among U.S. social workers.” Social Work and Social Science Review, Vol. 22.


Alexander M. Stoner (2021) Things Are Getting Worse on Our Way to Catastrophe: Neoliberal Environmentalism, Repressive Desublimation, and the Autonomous Ecoconsumer


Alexander M. Stoner (2020) Critical Reflections on America’s Green New Deal: Capital, Labor, and the Dynamics of Contemporary Social ChangeIn Capitalism Nature Socialism 32(1): 77-94.


Alexander M. Stoner (2018) Stuck in the Anthropocene: the problem of history, theory and practice. In Interrogating the Anthropocene: The Future in Question, Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 105-132.


Alexander M. Stoner (co-authored with John H. Bradford) (2017) The Treadmill of Destruction in Comparative Perspective: A Panel Study of Military Spending and Carbon Emissions, 1961-2014. Journal of World-System Research 22(3): 298-325. 


Alexander M. Stoner (co-authored with Andony Melathopoulos) (2016) If climate “changes everything”, why does so much remain the same? The dynamic of capitalism and discontents around climate change. Logos: A Journal of Modern Society and Culture vol. 14 no. 4.


Alexander M. Stoner (co-authored with Andony Melathopoulos) (2015) Critique and Transformation: On the Hypothetical Nature of Ecosystem Service Value and its Neo-Marxist, Liberal and Pragmatist Criticisms. Ecological Economics (117): 173-181.


Alexander M. Stoner (2014) Sociobiophysicality and the Necessity of Critical Theory: Moving beyond Prevailing Conceptions of Environmental Sociology in the USA. Critical Sociology 40(4): 621-642. [Winner of the American Sociological Association (ASA) 2013 Albert Szymanski-T.R. Young/Critical Sociology Marxist Sociology Graduate   Student Paper Award]


Alexander M. Stoner (co-authored with Eric Lybeck) (2011) Bringing Authoritarianism Back In: Reification, Latent Prejudice, and Economic Threat. Logos: A Journal of Modern Society and Culture, volume 10, issue 3.  





1995, Ph.D (Sociology), Bowling Green State University
1991, M.A. (Sociology), University of Toledo
1982, B.A. (English Language & Literature), Jiangxi Normal University
1983, Post B.A Certificates (Library & Information Science) Wuhan University and Shanghai East China Normal University
1978, Certificates (Advanced Math; Contemporary Chinese Literature)

Current Courses:
SO 208 (Methods of Social Research I)
SO/AN 287 (Culture, Society, and Happiness)
SO 372 (Minority Groups)
SO 408 (Survey Research Design & Analysis)
SO 491 (Internship in Research)
SO 498 (Directed Studies)
HP222A Tai Chi (Beginning)
HP 222C Tai Chi Sword

New Courses:
CHN 295 (Artistic Expressions and Chinese Society)
HL 295 (Holistic Health)

Other courses taught include:

SO 101 (Introductory Sociology)
SO 101H (Introductory Sociology Honors)
SO 301 (Social Psychology)
SO 302 (Life Cycle and Social Structure)
SO/SW 308 (Methods of Social Research II)
SO 353 (Globalization and Asian Societies)
SO369 (Introductory Statistics)
SO 495 (FLSA: Social Cultural Studies in China)
UN050/GD989 (Introduction to Chinese Calligraphy and Landscape Painting)
HP 295 (Tai Chi Intermediate)

Teaching and Professional History
26 years of college teaching experience in the United States and 5 years of college teaching experience in Mainland China.

2007-Present: NMU. Full Professor
2001-2006: NMU. Associate Professor
1996-2000: NMU. Assistant Professor
1994-1995: BGSU. Instructor
1991-1994: BGSU. Research/Teaching Assistant
1989-1991: UT. Research/Teaching Assistant
1985-1989: JNU. Lecturer
1984-1985: JNU. Instructor

Research Interests

  • The Marriage of Poetry and Social Sciences
  • Globalization and the Modern World System ; World Poverty; Climate Change; Effects of Economic Reform on Family Institution and Women in China
  • Race and Gender Differences in Status Attainment, Mental Health, and the Quality of Life, in the United States
  • Alienation, Self-esteem, and Depression

Teaching Philosophy

  • Integrity
  • Knowledge
  • Analytical/Critical Thinking
  • &Truth

Selected Publications
Professional conferences: Since 1993, delivered over a dozen research papers. Majority of these papers were presented at annual meetings of ASA (American Sociological Association), others of PCA/ACA, MWSA, NCSA, BSA, and NACSA, including numerous guest/invited presentations on diverse topics in the local community.

  • Yang, Renxin. 2015  Light & Shadows: Conversation of the Soul (Chinese/English poetry collection; Pp 1-355).  Hangzhou, Zhejiang University Press.
  • Yang, Renxin. 2013.  The Native Spirit (Chinese/English Poetry Collection; Pp: 1-268). Hangzhou: Zhejiang University Press.
  • Yang, Renxin. 2013.  “Rational Choice in Uncertain Times: Coping with Marital/Family Fragmentation during Economic Reform." American Review of China Studies 13(2): 27-58.
  • Yang, Renxin. 2011.  “Between Traditionalism and Modernity: Changing Values on Dating Behavior and Mate Selection Criteria.” International Review of Modern Sociology 37(2): 265-287.
  • Yang, Renxin. 2011. Floating Willow Flowers (Poetry Collection; Pg: 1 - 225). Shengyang: Northeastern University Press.
  • Yang, Renxin.  2007.  “Feminist Studies in Western Sociology.”  Book Chapter in Chinese (Chapter VII in Current Research and New Trends  in Western Sociology. Pg: 136-165, ed. By Jieli Li).  Beijing: Renming University Press.
  • Yang, Renxin & Arthur G. Neal. 2006. “The Globalization Impact on Family Relations in China.” International Journal of Sociology of the Family 32 (1): 113-126.
  • Yang, Renxin. 2000. “Race, Status Attainment, and Depression: Intervening Effects of Consequential Life Events.” Race & Society 2(2): 197-216.
  • Yang, Renxin & Billy Blodgett. 2000. “Effects of Race and Adolescent Decision-Making on Status Attainment and Self-Esteem,” Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in Social Work 9(1/2): 135-153.
  • DeMaris, Alfred & Renxin Yang. 1994. "Race, Alienation, and Interpersonal Mistrust." Sociological Spectrum, 14(4): 327-349.

*Publications in professional journals include Sociological Spectrum, Race and Society, Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in Social Work, International Journal of Sociology of the Family, and Gender and Society.

Selected Poems

  • Peace
  • Yield
  • Retreat
  • Fate
  • Selective Memory
  • To My Dear Daughter
  • Trust
  • Winter Tree
  • Seven Threaded Needles

          English Version 

          Chinese Version

          Chinese Poems

Curriculum Vitae

My Blog with Poems and Articles

Adjunct Faculty

The Sociology and Anthropology Department has need for adjunct faculty from time to time and we are interested in identifying potential instructors for anthropology and sociology.

For anthropology or sociology courses, please send vita to:

Susan Henderson, Department Secretary
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Northern Michigan University
1401 Presque Isle Avenue
Marquette, MI 49855


Send an e-mail attachment to

The minimum academic requirement to teach anthropology or sociology courses is a master’s degree in the relevant discipline. Previous teaching experience at the university level is preferred. Applicants must be current in the discipline in which they wish to teach.


Michael Loukinen Sociology









Professor of Sociology
Director, Up North Films

  • Office: 2417 Jamrich Hall
  • Studio: 104 Jacobetti
  • Phone:  906-227-2041
  • Email:

-1975 PhD Michigan State University
-1975-76 Post Doctoral Fellowship, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Courses taught at NMU
-SO 101 Introduction to Sociology
-SO 201 Sociology of Aging
-SO 351 Social Change
-SO/AN 495 Visual Sociology & Anthropology (possibly in the future)

Teaching and Professional History
1974  Michigan Technological University
1976-2014 Northern Michigan University

Research Interests: Traditional cultures and communities in the U.P.  Documentary film production.

 My research has focused on ethnic and occupational traditions in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Some of this has resulted in published book chapters and articles on Finnish Americans. Most of my research has been expressed in documentary films: two on Finnish American cultural history and traditions; one on traditional wilderness workers (trappers, loggers and commercial fishers), one on Native American fiddlers, six about the Lac Vieux Desert Ojibwa Band in Watersmeet, MI; and four sociological intervention documentaries on alternative school kids, adults with disabilities, vehicular homicide victims and myths about alcohol and intimate partner violence.  See the Up North Films website at .

Teaching Philosophy (and/or) Profile
     My career spans over thirty-five years of teaching and making sociological documentary films. Gradually I have evolved into cultural sociologist employing a blend of historical and anthropological perspectives along with sociology.

     I try to cultivate the ability to actually think sociologically about your personal life, your social network, community, nation and world.

I have been awarded numerous grants from local, state and national agencies to produce and direct documentary films. Funding agencies have included state humanities councils (MI, MN, ND, WI), the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities and many grants from the Michigan Council for the Arts. Awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to teach and study in Finland in 1982. Delivered numerous papers at academic conferences. Film screenings at major academic conferences and film festivals nationally on PBS and Finnish television networks Films have won both academic and artistic honors. Recently received the Artist of the Year Award (Marquette Arts Council) and Outstanding Scholarship Award (Northern Michigan University).

RETIRED: Professor of Sociology and Head, Department of Sociology and Anthropology


  • Ph.D.  Sociology; Western Michigan University
  • MA     Sociology; Western Michigan University
  • BA      Grand Valley State University


Seek truth.  Embrace justice.  Live deliberately.  Show compassion.  Express gratitude.  Celebrate beauty.  Respect life.

These elemental statements reflect the aspirations and the actions that compel me.  Together they define my pathway to effective teaching, to creative scholarship, and to responsible citizenship. 

I grew up in Grand Rapids where I attended school and explored the natural wonders of Michigan.  After I earned my Ph. D. in Sociology from Western Michigan University, I taught for many years in Ohio.  Now I have returned to my native state to continue doing that which I most value – teach a new generation of students, work collaboratively with colleagues, and seek solutions to the myriad problems that confront our society.

As an educator and Sociologist I focus on problems of violence and injustice.  I have published books and articles on rape, child abuse, youth suicide, domestic violence, bullying, gambling, and violence in schools.  I am especially concerned with helping victims of violence heal, and supporting schools and community organizations in preventing violence.

In addition to my research interests, I have a passion for photography.  I am thrilled by the challenge of capturing an unguarded moment that reveals a deeper essence.  Kaleidoscopic patterns of light, shape-shifting landscapes, and the complexities of the human condition offer endless photographic possibilities.

I feel fortunate to be in a department whose members are engaged in promoting the well-being of students and the larger community.  Come by and visit – we can learn from one another.

Retired: Courses Taught at NMU
SO101: Introductory Sociology
SO262: Women, Men, and Social Inequality 

Research interests 
Focus on medical power relations and gender, specifically issues relating to medicalization and the social construction of the body. Delivered numerous papers at sociology conferences, including “Negotiating Normatively Gendered Embodiment,” a paper presented at the 2004 American Sociological Association meetings in San Francisco.

Member of the American Sociological Association, New York State Sociological Association, and the Midwest Sociological Association.

Educational Background
Ph.D. Michigan State University, 2000 (Sociology)
M.A. Southern Illinois University, 1991 (Sociology)
B.S. Illinois State University (Sociology)

Teaching and professional History
2004 – 2021 Northern Michigan University, Marquette, MI, Assistant Professor
2001 – 2004 Utica College, Utica, NY, Assistant Professor
2000 – 2001 Truman State University, Kirksville, MO, Visiting Professor
1996 – 1999 University of Nebraska, Omaha, NE, Adjunct Instructor
1991 – 1996 Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, Adjunct Instructor
1990 – 1995 Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, Research Assistant
1989 – 1990 Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, IL, Research Assistant