Hire a Duke Ph.D.

We are proud to have outstanding students on the job market. Available below are Brief sketches of our placement candidates, including contact information, research interests and education. Some students also include a personal webpage link and/or their resume.

If you have questions about graduate student placement, please contact our Assistant to the Director of Graduate Studies Jessica Ellington. If you have questions about our Ph.D. program in general, contact our Director of Graduate Studies Stephen Vaisey.

Job Candidates

Brian Aronson

Brian Aronson

Research and Teaching Interests
Social Network Analysis, Organizations, Inequality, Public Health
  • Duke University, Ph.D., Sociology, expected 2019
  • Duke University, M.A. Sociology 2016
  • Stony Brook University, B.A. in Sociology with Honors 2012

Dissertation Title: “The Structure of Organizational Ecosystems”

(Committee: Lisa A. Keister (co-chair), James Moody (co-chair), Martin Ruef, Christopher A. Bail)

Simon Brauer

Simon G. Brauer

Research and Teaching Interests
Religion, Socialization, The Life Course Paradigm, Higher Education, statistics
  • Ph.D. Sociology, Duke University, expected 2019
  • M.A., Sociology, Duke University, 2016
  • B.S., Sociology and Psychology, Illinois Institute of Technology, 2012

Dissertation Title: "The Role of Weakening Religious Socialization in National Religious Decline"

(Committee: Mark Chaves (chair),  Linda K. George, Stephen Vaisey, Jen'nan Read)

Molly Copeland Photo

Molly Copeland

Research and Teaching Interests
Social Network Analysis, Medical Sociology, Gender, Life Course Perspective, Service-learning
  • Ph.D. Sociology, Duke University, expected 2020
  • M.A. Sociology, Duke University, 2017
  • B.A., Linguistics, The College of William & Mary, 2011

Dissertation Title: "When Friends Help and Harm: Adolescent social structure and mental health"

(Committee: James Moody (Chair), Linda K. George, Tyson H. Brown, Christopher A. Bail)

Brent Curdy

Brent Curdy

Research and Teaching Interests
Survey Methods, Experiments with Human Subjects, Cross-Cultural Surveys, Identity theory, and Social Problems


  • Ph.D., Sociology, Duke University 2018
  • M.A., Sociology, Duke University 2015
  • B.A., Sociology, University of California, Berkeley 2012
    • Highest distinction at the University and Highest Honors in Sociology
  • Arabic Language certification, Defense Language Institute 2003

Dissertation Title: "Error Revisited: the meaning and ramifications of variance for Affect Control Theory"

(Committee: Lynn Smith-Lovin (chair), Stephen Vaisey, Linda K. George, Kenneth Spenner)

Lauren Valentino

Lauren Valentino

Research and Teaching Interests
Culture and Cognitive Sociology; Inequality and Stratification; Race, Class, and Gender; Mixed Methods
  • Ph.D., Sociology, Duke University, expected 2019
    • Vorsanger-Smith Award
    • Kenan Institute for Ethics Fellow
    • Education and Human Development Scholar
  • M.A., Sociology, Duke University, 2016
    • Certification areas: Culture, Inequality
  • M.A., Sociology, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 2013
  • B.A., Sociology (with honors), French Studies, Wesleyan University, 2010

Dissertation Title: “What is a ‘Good’ Job? Cultural Logics of Occupational Prestige”

(Committee: Steve Vaisey (chair), Chris Bail, Kieran Healy, Jessi Streib)

Bethany Young

Bethany J. Young

Research and Teaching Interests
Race, Gender, Identity, Experimental Methods
  • Ph.D Sociology, Duke University, expected 2019
  • M.A., Sociology, Duke University 2017
  • J.D., George Washington University Law School 2012
  • B.A., Spelman College 2009

Dissertation Title: "Invisible Girls: Growing Up Black and Female in Elite, Predominantly White Schools"

(Committee: Eduardo Bonilla-Silva (co-chair), Lynn Smith-Lovin (co-chair), Jessi Streib, Tyson Brown)