School of Social Sciences and International Studies

Welcome from the Chair


On behalf of the faculty and staff in our School of Social Sciences and International Studies, I enthusiastically welcome you, and appreciate your interest in our people and programs. 

This outstanding school brings together the faculty and programs from the former departments of Communication, Modern Languages, Sociology & Anthropology, and the School of Public and International Affairs. We believe that together we can better respond to the needs of our students and community, by fostering greater interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation. We’re focused on fusing passion with practice.

SoSSIS—The School of Social Sciences and International Studies—is where we work together to change the world. SoSSIS provides an environment for collaboration to promote social, cultural, political and communication competence at the local, state, national, and international levels. Our faculty have a wealth of experience in the public and private sector not only as teachers, but also as attorneys, volunteers, activists, and consultants for a variety of nongovernmental organizations and community development initiatives. We are recognized scholars in our fields, and we have won numerous awards for our teaching, scholarship and service. Our faculty demonstrate a commitment to excellence in all that we do, and promote the ideals of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in our classroom, research, and service activities.

This expertise comes alive in our classrooms – through sharing our research, knowledge and experiences with students. We promote experiential learning to make the lessons come alive. In SoSSIS we practice engaged theory; we seek to understand the world in order to change it. We recognize that many of today’s most pressing concerns are problems that demand complex, sustainable solutions. Finding such solutions is no small feat. But Wright State alumni from our programs are doing this work. They are pursuing careers in the public and private sector, for nonprofits such as Clothes that Work and the Dayton Mediation Center, as well as a range of other organizations close to home, including the Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association, Dayton Better Business Bureau (BBB), Dayton Development Corporation, and the Dayton Human Relations Council. Others are employed by major media organizations (including Hearst, Cox Media Group, and the USA Today network) as well as local and national-level businesses. Many of our former students are educators in K-12 schools and beyond. Some work in governmental and nongovernmental organizations, as case managers, police officers, attorneys, consultants, and managers. One of our students served as Ohio Speaker of the House, and another is the former mayor of Dayton. Others have made their careers as diplomats in a wide variety of governmental offices, including the U.S. Department of State, the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Air and Space Intelligence Center, just to name a few. Some are representing us globally, working at the United Nations, in the Peace Corps, for Médecins Sans Frontières‎, and Catholic Relief Services.

Whatever their path, future SoSSIS graduates will take with them a skill set that is valuable in any setting. Not only can they identify and solve problems, they know how to put those solutions to work. By marrying passion and practicality, SoSSIS prepares our students to be engaged, effective professionals and citizens capable of not only listening and understanding, but also taking on matters of consequence at home and in the world. Nothing could be more relevant—or more necessary—here and everywhere.

Whether you are a current student, prospective student, alum, or just a curious member of the community, we welcome you to our School of Social Sciences and International Studies and look forward to getting to know you as you get to know us and the work that drives us.

Laura M. Luehrmann, Ph.D.


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