Learning from social perspectives

Club members learn how to deal with conflicting viewpoints they may encounter after college


ZACH RUBIO | The Daily Evergreen

The Sociology Club tours the Elson S. Floyd Cultural Center on Thursday to gain a better understanding and appreciation of multicultural history and to learn about resources available on campus.

SYDNEY BROWN, Evergreen reporter

The Sociology Club works to think about and discuss community issues from a social perspective, rather than a political or economic one.

Club adviser Sarah Whitley said she makes unique perspectives an essential part of the group’s discussion by looking at an issue from all sides and considering the social and environmental factors.

Students are expected to be academically disciplined to best contribute to the club, but they are inclusive and welcome those outside the sociology major, Whitley said.
They talk about concepts in sociology and engage in community service.

At a typical meeting, the club members are given a topic of discussion. They then work out the different tenets of the issue. Members are encouraged to ask questions regarding the issue’s causes, effects and social factors surrounding it.

“We want to give students a chance to be critical and constructive in their discussions,” Whitley said. “This helps prepare them for the outside world, where not everyone will have the same opinion on the same topic.”

Club President Norma Lozano, a senior double majoring in sociology and political science, mediates the discussions so the group can focus on the integration of skills involved with practical discussion.

“People in the club are able to combine what they learned from a professor with a real world application,” Lozano said. “We want them to feel comfortable expressing themselves in a positive way.”

Carolina Garcia, a freshman majoring in sociology, has seen firsthand the benefits of joining the club. Within the first three meetings, Garcia expressed a gratitude for the inclusive nature of the members and officers.

“You get to talk to people about things that really matter,” Garcia said. “It’s also a great way to meet people.”


ZACH RUBIO | The Daily Evergreen
President Norma Lozano and club members walk toward the Elson S. Floyd Cultural Center.


This kind of exposure to real-world issues is incredibly valuable in establishing networking and professionalism skills for outside of the school environment, Whitley said.

“We want to send students out with a working knowledge of some of the challenges they’ll face out in the workforce,” Whitley said, “and how to remain professional during those challenges.”

The club hosts a number of career and academic panels. Sociology alumni and professors are invited to offer advice in regard to building a resume, job interviewing and job availability within the sociology field, Whitley said.

Elaine Quizon, a junior majoring in business and minoring in sociology, took the vice president seat this year because of how useful the club had been to her as a sitting member.

The club offers one research credit for anyone involved, which can help with gaining more of the academic experience it focuses on, Quizon said.

“The club is very inclusive and can teach you how to get outside of your comfort zone,” Quizon said. “The research credit is simply a bonus.”

As a club based on modern day issues, the Sociology Club makes fundraisers a regular event.

For their next fundraiser, during which they plan to sell tamales to raise money for Whitman County’s food bank, Lozano asked for feedback on the specifics of the fundraiser from her members.

“Giving back to the community is a truly rewarding experience,” Lozano said. “In a college town like Pullman, it is easy to notice only other college students. We want to increase awareness of the issues our community faces.”

Even for those not studying sociology, the club’s main premise is to promote a healthy and diverse understanding of the world, Whitley said.

The club meets at 4 p.m. Thursdays in the CUB, Room 206. This may be subject to change, so those interested can check their Facebook page for updates.