Molly Smith, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She joined the faculty in the fall of 2016 after receiving her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University. She also holds both a M.A. in Criminal Justice and Criminology and a B.A. in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University.
Her research interests broadly relate to the study of sex crimes, with specific focuses on sexual assault on college campuses and the commercial sex trade. Her primary research goal is to add to the limited empirical understanding about sex traffickers and the men who purchase sex. In line with this goal, her dissertation examines how sex buyers’ age and stage in the life course influences their motivations for seeking out women who are prostituted on the street. She believes that understanding such motivations is key given that further research on the demand aspect of the commercial sex trade could generate new practices for handling the men who purchase sex; thus potentially limiting recidivism among this population and reducing future victimization among sex workers. Furthermore, she also mentors both undergraduate and graduate students on a variety of projects, including topics such as corrections, life-course criminology, and campus crime. Dr. Smith’s research has been published in journals such as Criminology, Criminal Justice and Behavior, and Journal of Interpersonal Violence.
In addition to maintaining an active research agenda, Dr. Smith is wholly committed to teaching, student mentorship, and service to the university and discipline. She is an active member of the American Society of Criminology and Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, as well as the Southwestern Association of Criminal Justice; where she currently serves on the executive board as the organization’s Webmaster. She is additionally very dedicated to service at the departmental and university levels and is currently the faculty advisor for Criminal Justice Society, Alpha Phi Sigma (Criminal Justice Honor Society), and the Criminal Justice Graduate Student Association.
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