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Sociology and public policy professor wins CHASS distinguished lecturer award

Author: University Communications
August 13, 2019

Steven Brint, a UCR distinguished professor of sociology and public policy, is the recipient of the 2018-19 College of Humanities and Social Sciences Distinguished Lecturer Award. The award was announced in July and will be presented in spring 2020.

Steven Brint
Steven Brint

The award recognizes Brint’s “outstanding scholarly contributions to our college and university as well as the academic and general public as a whole,” according to the CHASS Executive Committee.

Brint is a leading scholar in the field of higher education and the sociology of education. He’s written four books, edited four more, and published 60 journal articles.

His research has focused on the two-year college model, occupational-professional schools, and liberal arts institutions. He’s also had particular interest in the UC system and its students.

Brint’s most recent book, “Two Cheers for Higher Education: Why American Universities Are Stronger than Ever – and How to Meet the Challenges They Face,” was published by Princeton University Press in 2018.  

The book shows how the combined forces of academic professionalism, technological innovation, and social inclusion have propelled American universities to rapid growth and growing prominence in American society.  The book was hailed as “the most thorough, sweeping, and balanced book I have read on the strengths and weaknesses of contemporary colleges and universities” by historian Steven Mintz in Inside Higher Ed, and as “a scholarly tour de force” by New York Times education columnist David Kirp. 

Brint’s Colleges & Universities 2000 project has been funded for nearly two decades by the National Science Foundation and two philanthropic groups.  His papers include studies of the impact of market forces on universities, the reference groups of university presidents, the origins of community colleges, and the rise of the “practical arts” in the undergraduate curriculum, among many other subjects. 

Brint has also held administrative posts at UCR, including vice chair of the Riverside Division of the Academic Senate, associate dean of CHASS, and vice provost for undergraduate education.