Kathleen Maurer Smith, Ph. D.

  • Why I Love Teaching at Molloy College

    Molloy College is a very special place that emphasizes academic excellence and provides a strong sense of community.  As a Molloy graduate myself, I found that the College prepared me well for success in graduate school and in my career.  I attribute this to the broad liberal arts education I received at Molloy as well as the firm foundation in research and scholarship that was provided in my major area of study.  It has been a privilege and a pleasure for me to return to Molloy to teach Sociology and later serve as Dean of the Division of Social Sciences, so that I may be part of the College's efforts to provide the same excellent educational opportunities for present and future generations of students that I was fortunate enough to receive.

  • Academic Interests
    • Marriage and the Family
    • Alcoholism and Drug Abuse
    • Sociology of Death and Dying
    • Stigma and Mental Illness
  • What I am working on

    I am in the process of revising a book I have been writing entitled: The Resilient Family: Surviving and Thriving through the Centuries.

  • Educational Philosophy

    My philosophy of teaching centers on both excellence in education and on providing access to higher education to all who truly desire it.  These dual purposes may seem potentially contradictory, but it is my firm belief that this does not have to be the case.  I am an ardent advocate of remedial courses and academic student support services.  I actively encourage students to avail themselves of these services and I always make myself available to my students for whatever assistance I can give them.  Although I am more than willing to provide my time, guidance, and support to assist my students, I believe that it is they who must put forth the extra effort to succeed, since I am adamant about maintaining high academic standards.  In general, I view education as an exciting, multifaceted, lifelong process, which involves the whole person.  Therefore, my ultimate goal as a college professor is to stimulate in my students a spirit of inquiry, the ability to think critically and analytically, and a love of learning that will last a lifetime.

  • Educational Background

    Ph.D. Sociology - City University of New York
    Dissertation Title: "Families of Recovering Women Alcoholics: A Qualitative Analysis of Roles, Rules, and Rituals"

    M.A. Sociology - Adelphi University
    Thesis Title: "Variations in Homogeneity, Self-disclosure, and Closeness in Same-Sex and Cross-Sex Friendship Dyads"

    B.A. Sociology - Molloy College

  • Additional Information

    I was a founding member of the Community Research Institute at Molloy College which was established in 1987 and I have served as Co-Director of CRI which has been involved in more than 40 research projects during that time.  Some of these projects were with community partners while others consisted of assisting Molloy faculty with their research.

    Why a major in the Division of Social Sciences makes sense for you.

    The Division of Social Sciences consists of the Departments of Criminal Justice, History and Political Science, Psychology, Social Work, and Sociology and Anthropology.  Minors in the Division include:  Criminal Justice, History, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Applied Sociological Research, Diversity and Tolerance Studies, Gerontology, Legal Studies, and Sustainability Policies and Practices.  A degree in the social sciences provides and exceptional educational experience that leads to a better understanding of human interactions, as well as a wealth of knowledge about human behavior and the world in which we live.  Our programs offer internships, practicum, and field placements to allow hands-on experience and networking opportunities which can facilitate employment in the student's chosen field.  The firm foundation in research that is an essential part of social science majors enables our students to be well-prepared for graduate level studies.  For students who have a strong desire to make a difference in our society, the pursuit of studies in the social sciences is an excellent choice.


  • Publications/Presentations

    Sapir, S. G. & Smith, K.M. (1992). The role of the International Council of Psychologists at the United Nations.  In U. P. Gielen, L. L. Adler, & N. A. Milgram, (Eds.),  Psychology in international perspective (pp. 19-29).  Lisse, The Netherlands: Swet and Zeitlinger.

    Denmark, F. L., Schwartz, L., & Smith, K.M. (1991).Women in the United States of America and Canada.  In L. L. Adler, (Ed.), Women in cross-cultural perspective (pp. 1-18). New York: Praeger Publishers.

    Smith, K.M. & Spinrad, W. (1981). The popular political mood. Social Policy (pp. 37-45), March/April.

    Recent Scholarly Presentations:
    Feeg, V.D., Smith, K.M. Cullinan, M.B., Dries, S., & Sardinia-Prager, L.A. (2012). Impact of a campus intervention to reduce mental illness stigma. Paper Session at Eastern Nursing Research Society: Twenty-Fourth Annual Scientific Sessions in New Haven, CT

    Feeg, V.D., Smith, K.M., Cullinan, M.B., Dries, S., & Sardinia-Prager, L.A. (2011). Mental illness "stigma" perceptions and attitudes: Predictors and impact of a campus "common reading" program. Podium presentation at SUNY Stony Brook Converging Science Summit in Stony Brook, NY.

    Feeg, V. D., Cullinan, M. B., & Smith, K.M. (2011). Predictors of mental illness "stigma"perceptions and attitudes among college students: A descriptive analysis. Poster presentation at the Eastern Nursing Research Society: Twenty-Third Annual Scientific Sessions in Philadelphia, PA.