Are you a student interested in getting more involved in RSS?

The Rural Sociological Society has an active student group. Though it is primary made up of graduate students (MS and PhD), we encourage undergraduate students to get involved. Here are five ways to get involved:

  1. Join the student listserv: Our graduate students maintain a listserv of student members—graduate and undergraduate students are welcome to join. Information is often funneled through the listserv in between RSS annual meetings.  Directions on how to join are included here. You can also sign up to receive our monthly eBulletin by contacting the RSS Business Office at [email protected] or via our website www.ruralsociology.org.

  2. Present at our annual meeting: Another way to become involved in RSS is to submit a paper, poster, or organized session to our annual meeting. The RSS meets once a year generally mid-July to mid-August in different regions of the United States. Our annual meeting is student-friendly and features various activities meant to facilitate student networking. These include a “speed networking event,” a graduate student reception with the President of RSS, and professional development sessions.  The annual meeting also gives you an opportunity to discuss your research, get ideas for future work, and interact with a network of social scientists from various institutions across the U.S.  The call for papers generally appears in November with abstracts due in early February.

  3. Join a Research Interest Group: One way students get involved is through our Research and Interest Groups (RIGs). RSS currently has 14 RIGs. Research and Interest Groups (RIGs) reflect the substantive interests of RSS Members and serve as an important avenue for connecting members with similar interests.

    Current RIGs include Youth, Education, and Rural Vitality; Community, Health, and Family; Natural Resources; Population; Rural Studies; Rural Poverty; Rural Policy; Rural Racial and Ethnicity; Gender and Sexualities; Applied and Extension; Sociology of Food and Agriculture (SAFRIG); Teaching and Curriculum: The Elders (formerly Senior Rural Sociologists); and International Development and Studies.

    RIGs serve a critical role in RSS including: identifying, developing, and recruiting for the annual RSS conference; planning special events, speakers, field trips for the annual conference; providing intellectual leadership in their respective areas; rewarding achievement through internal awards and recognitions; and creating opportunities for members, particularly graduate students, to network and identify colleagues with similar interests.

    To find out more about each group you can contact any Chair, co-Chair, or Chair-elect of the group you are interested in. Become a member, volunteer to be a leader, or propose a session at the RSS Annual Meeting on behalf of your RIG of interest.

  4.  Join a standing committee: RSS also welcomes graduate students to sit on the various standing committees of the society. Standing Committees include Awards and Endowment, Development, Diversity, Membership, Program, and Publications and Communications. We also have two formal Graduate Student representatives to our Leadership Council; these are elected positions. Our current student representatives to Council are Jasmine Whiteside ([email protected]), The Ohio State University and James Patterson ([email protected]), Auburn University.

  5. Submit to our annual thesis, dissertation, and paper awards: Students can submit academic work for monetary awards annually, which have been critical for graduate students that needed funding to complete their studies. In addition to the Olaf Larson Graduate Student Paper Award and Master’s Thesis/Dissertation Research Awards, several RIGs also annually invite paper submissions for awards (check with individual RIGs for more information, watch the email list, or check the student award announcements).