Ruth Kleinman

Ruth Kleinman and family.

Class: 2005
Current Position:
 Development Coordinator at Congregation Rodeph Sholom, New York, NY

I chose to study sociology because I always really enjoyed observing and learning about groups of people and trends. I started as a psychology major at UB and when I began to better understand that psychology was more the study of individuals, and sociology was the study of multiple people, I chose to study both. Sociology became my primary major and bigger interest, and found that there were messages relayed through text and film, which I enjoyed studying.

One of my most memorable experiences as a sociology major was working on my Advanced Honors Thesis, a voluntary project upon which I chose to embark in my junior year. I worked with a few different professors and created Honors classes from mainstream ones to “up the ante” and ultimately performed additional research in the subject area of influences on female adolescent smoking of cigarettes to complete my paper. I studied about how the media affects this, and how all learning and teaching truly starts within the family and from the home.

Upon graduating from UB, I began to work on college campuses, in the Jewish campus community and beyond. I worked directly with students, and more occasionally with faculty, staff, administration, and community members. I currently work in a religious institution with a thriving office staff and large membership. Therefore, my sociology degree is being put to use almost every day in my work life, because I work with people who have their own personalities, behaviors, traits, trends, and ideas. In my everyday life, I feel like I use my sociology background when I watch the news, see how social media is currently used in our society, and even how members of my family interact with one another.

I would recommend the sociology program to others because the study of the subject opens up or keeps open, many doors to the real world. Most of us interact with other humans on a daily basis, and having a better understanding of people will allow you to have a better understanding of the world in terms of business, the global economy, what groups of people can accomplish, and even simple daily life.