Faculty Bio

Jennifer Drew, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Sociology

Office: Plummer House

Tel: 617-243-2196

Email: jdrew@lasell.edu

Department: Social Sciences


  • Ph.D. Sociology, Boston University
  • M.A. Sociology, Boston University
  • A.B. Sociology, Indiana University


  • CJ 703 Advanced Criminological Thought

Dr. Jenifer Drew brings her "sociological imagination" to the areas of social stratification, inequality, and deviance. Her approach to these topics combines an Interactionist perspective with a Social Conflict view. She has published on the subjects of prison postsecondary education, gender equity in education, the doctor-patient relationship. Dr. Drew also works with the Massachusetts Department of Corrections, the Urban League, and academics across the country in the area of prison education. She has consulted with the U.S. Department of Education, the National Institute of Drug Abuse, and U.S. Department of Civil Rights, and offered testimony before the United States Congressional Sub-committee on Gender Equity in Vocational Education.

Dr. Drew was associated with the Boston University Prison Education Program for 14 years, administering the program and teaching incarcerated men and women inside the four medium-security state prisons in eastern Massachusetts. She is a member of the Ex-Offender Advisory Council of Boston Connects, Inc. in Roxbury, Massachusetts, and a member of the Criminal Justice Policy Coalition in Boston.

Dr. Drew is the founding trustee of Stone Associates, which supports a speakers bureaus composed of formerly incarcerated, educationally involved men and women who report first hand on the prison industrial complex. Stone also consults with educational institutions interested in providing prison education, and serves men and women who wish to continue their education upon their release from incarceration.

What do you like about teaching at Lasell College?
"Lasell is a fabulous place to grow, to risk and explore -- that is true for faculty as well as students. It has been my pleasure to watch my students grow, and my honor to have played a small part in their young lives.

My primary teaching goal is to grant students the ability to think sociologically; that is, to consider that which they already know in a new way, and to give them tools to understand their new experiences. My prison education work has reinforced my view that the classroom is the ideal place to change and grow, to risk abandoning one’s former view of self in the world, and try on another. In both prison and traditional classrooms, students need to be both challenged and supported during this process. While it is possible to leave one of my classes without at least a small transformation in one’s views, to do so is to fail to get 'your money’s worth.'"