Emily Brenner: Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice

Q&A with the Class of 2021

May 19, 2021 Caitlin Burns

Arcadia University Class of 2021 graduate Emily Brenner

Major and minor: Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice (Social Justice concentration) with a Sociology minor

Favorite Arcadia memory: That’s hard because there’s so many things. I’d go with either Woodstock 2019, my entire First-Year Study Abroad Experience (FYSAE) semester in London, and what I’m really missing the most now is hanging out at the Chat at night with friends!

Involvement on campus: I was involved with Hillel, and on the executive board of Student Programming Board, where I was the Programming and Community Development Chair for Campus Life Staff. [I was also] an RA for two years prior to COVID. I worked in Student Affairs at the front desk for two years as well, and I interned at the British Parliament with a Labour MP while abroad in 2019. 

Up until COVID flipped everything I was also a FYSAE Mentor and Ambassador, and volunteered as a Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminal Justice (SACJ) Department Ambassador for incoming first-year students. Currently, I’m an Arcadia Ambassador and a Peer Mentor/Teaching Assistant for the SACJ Department, where I’ve helped in classes on serial killers, research writing, and just finished an intro to gender studies course. I also just completed the Office of Career Education’s E3 Course. 

Primarily, the research I worked on was my thesis, where I used a content analysis to study the normalization of police brutality in crime dramas.

Advice for your first-year self: The advice I would give first-year Emily is don’t be afraid to do something even if you’re by yourself. Besides giving me a sense of independence, I feel I grew the most as a person when I went outside my comfort zone and interacted with the world on my own. Whether this was traveling/day trips, volunteering, meeting new people, or finding new experiences, learning that it’s okay to break off and do things at your own pace was incredibly valuable to me. 

After Arcadia: My undergraduate experience at Arcadia played a major role in shaping my future after college. I studied abroad in the UK twice and loved it, and now I am looking forward to completing my Master of Research at the University of Glasgow in the fall. All of the opportunities I’ve been given by professors and mentors to conduct research or teach alongside them has helped me realize that I too want to be an academic. I am passionate about social justice, education, and a curious person with an endless list of questions— knowing that I have a clear path where I will be able to do what I love as a career is a huge relief, and I can thank my advisors and the SACJ Department for that!

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