Vice President of Academic Affairs
M.A. Sociology, San Diego State University; B.A. Sociology, minors in Applied Psychology and Education, University of California, Santa Barbara.
Rachel developed the Drugs and Alcohol in Popular Culture course specifically for the Sober College student. It is Rachel’s goal to help students develop a sociological perspective on drug and alcohol use and addiction through the study of American popular culture. In this course the student is the expert; they are hugely familiar with both the culture they live in as well as with their personal experiences surrounding drug and alcohol use. We use this expertise to critique and analyze the beliefs surrounding drugs and drug use in our society. Students will discover how beliefs are transmitted to the general population and how in turn those beliefs continually influence our understanding of drugs, alcohol and those that use.
She enjoys introducing new material in innovative ways and showing students how sociology is a part of their everyday lives. The aspect that Rachel loves most about teaching is the interaction with the students. Rachel adds, “Developing a rapport with students is very important to me. Receiving positive feedback from students about my ability to maintain a safe and fun classroom environment is very rewarding and one of the reasons why I love what I do. As a teacher within a therapeutic community, it is perhaps most rewarding to see the positive effects in their own lives as a result of the study of sociology. It is amazing to watch student’s process the academic information presented in class and, in turn, transmute it to tangible and identifiable action and positive change in their search for recovery.”