Two Ph.D candidates successfully defended their dissertations this Spring.

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Brittani McNeal and Rick Dierenfeldt, Ph.D Candidates, successfully defended their dissertations Friday, April 21, 2016.  Both Rick and Brittani had a year to prepare, and select a committee to present their hard work too. Both have already attained employment in the education field which further solidifies UALR’s Criminal Justice Department 100% success rate in Ph.D students receiving tenure-track positions.

Rick’s Dissertation Defense was entitled , “Disentangling the Effects of Violent Subculture and Structure: A MultiLevel Analysis of Race-Specific Violence in Urban US Counties.” His committee consisted of Dr. Jim Golden, Dr. Shaun Thomas, Dr. Tim Brown, and Dr. Jeff Walker. Brittani’s Dissertation Defense was entitled, “An Application of General Strain Theory to Recidivism in Arkansas: A Multilevel Study.” Her committee consisted of Dr. Jim Golden, Dr. Jeff Walker. Dr. Emily Berthelot, and Dr. Mary Parker.

Brittani will go on to be an Assistant Professor at the University of West Georgia, and Rick will be on staff at Penn State Wilkes-Barr.  For more information on the Ph.D program in Criminal Justice, please reach out to Dr. Jim Golden at or by phone at 569-8590.

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