North Central College - Naperville, IL


Why choose sociology at North Central College?

You’ll use your knowledge and experience to promote social justice while exploring careers in public service like social work, criminal justice and community activism. Working closely with our outstanding professors, you can conduct research here and abroad and have the chance to witness urban issues firsthand during Chicago Term. You'll be ready to make a difference in the world around you after you study topics like family, poverty, urban life, juvenile delinquency and race/ethnicity.

You can also:

  • Choose a concentration in criminal justice, community studies or general sociology.
  • Learn more about the community through service-learning
    projects and volunteer opportunities with organizations like World
    Relief, Circle K and North Central’s Cardinals in Action.

    Learn more about the community through service-learningprojects and volunteer opportunities with organizations like WorldRelief, International Justice Mission, Circle K and North Central’s Cardinals in Action.

  • Apply for a Richter Grant to fund your research anywhere in the world.
  • Pair your interest in sociology with anthropology and complete a single combined major in sociology and anthropology.
  • Join the Alpha Kappa Delta sociology honor society.


Luis Tello '17, Lincoln Laureate recipient
North Central College faculty name Luis Tello, a senior sociology major and urban/suburban studies minor, as its 2016 Lincoln Laureate recipient.
Laura Ebsworth ’17 as Emily Baker, Michael Frohling ’20 as Ted Baker
Inspired by the Ground Zero mosque controversy in New York City, this faculty-directed play engages a host of social issues on stage.
Students like Luis Tello ’17 are driven to help people and give back to the world—a passion they share with faculty and fellow members of NCC’s Best.



  • Mental health services intern, Wheaton, IL
  • Intern, Illinois State Police, Downers Grove, IL
  • At-risk youth mentor, Metropolitan Family Services, Wheaton, IL
  • Intern, HHS Planning and Consulting, Chicago
  • Refugee resettlement intern, World Relief, Aurora, IL
  • TLC youth advocate, Hesed House, Aurora, IL
  • Adult probation services intern, 19th Judicial Circuit, Waukegan, IL
  • Exploring diversity intern, Bardwell School, Aurora, IL
  • Not-for-profit management, Appalachia Service Project, Johnson City, TN

Graduate Schools

Recent graduates in sociology have been accepted at:

  • University of San Diego
  • Northwestern University, Evanston, IL


Recent graduates in sociology include:

  • Project coordinator, Alzheimer’s Disease Clinical Trials at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago
Anthropology & Sociology double major

Matthew knew that if he majored in sociology, he would gain practical tools to think critically about the world and make a difference. Once he discovered that many of his idols like Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and other activists studied sociology as well, he was sold.

As he prepared to attend Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C., to pursue ministry in the United Methodist Church, Matthew took advantage of interdisciplinary opportunities at North Central.

He participated in service trips with the College’s Office of Ministry and Service to international and local destinations—Haiti, Honduras, the Middle East, Chicago, Washington, D.C.—and conducted original research for his senior...

Sociology major

Mike wants to work in law enforcement. As preparation, he majored in sociology with a criminal justice emphasis and took advantage of many experiences outside the classroom.

“From exploring various city neighborhoods during my Chicago term classes to my internship with the Illinois State Police Department to volunteering with an ex-con reentry program to challenging course work and projects, I feel I’m ready,” says Mike.

His course-work included research projects and presentations at North Central’s Rall Symposium for Undergradute Research and a Midwestern psychology conference. Mike even focused his College Scholars Honors thesis on a criminal justice issue.

“I feel I’ve had outlets to...

Sociology major

Jessica’s favorite aspect of North Central College’s sociology program is its flexibility.

“There’s so much more freedom than many larger schools would offer,” Jessica says. “Of the three tracks in the program—community studies, criminal justice and general studies—I chose the general track because it allowed me to incorporate much of my own research and personal interests to make the major my own.

“You can work with professors on their research projects and create your own through an independent study course or even a Richter grant.”

Jessica has worked extensively with a sociology professor on a...

Sociology major

John wasn’t content to simply experience a sociology education—he created his own. Sociology majors at North Central College can create their own independent study, which can replace standard coursework.

“I completed a study on the lack of social and economic critiques in top 10 popular music during the 2000s,” he says. “I presented my findings at North Central College's Rall Symposium my junior year.”

Additionally, John traveled with a group of North Central College students and professors to Guatemala. They met with producers of fair-trade coffee—which the College imports—and learned about the coffee trade. John’s experience has inspired him to educate others about social change.

John has...

Sociology major

Justein found her interest and life’s work while taking a research methods class. The class led to an independent study about a nonprofit organization, Hope For The Warriors, that works with wounded military members and their families. She landed a summer internship with the organization.

“I wanted a major that could be a lifestyle. I found that in sociology where you can explore your interests.”

Other experiences—an internship with refugee resettlement at World Relief and service with the Blue Key Honor Society—opened opportunities to address tough societal issues and witness positive changes. She added a minor in social change/public advocacy to expand her knowledge as well. “When you leave here...

Sociology major

When she arrived at North Central, Sam expected to major in Spanish—but her first sociology course hooked her on a new field. While completing her concentration in community studies, she worked on a team research project that combined her interests in gender and women's studies. "We needed to construct a survey and get approval from the ethics committee," she says. "It was a very valuable experience, especially since I plan to go to graduate school." She also conducted research in the Chicago neighborhood of Andersonville as part of Chicago Term.

Sam hopes to become a professor of sociology. To help her achieve that goal, she volunteered for a campus search committee that interviewed candidates for a...