Melanie Lorek


I am a sociologist with an interest in culture, social memory, social transformations, sociology of food, environmental sociology,  and research methods. I recently completed my Ph.D. at the department of Sociology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. In my research, I examine the mechanisms through which personal and collective memory draw on the past and the ways in which this past is used to construct, build, and negotiate the present. Before coming to the Graduate Center, I attended Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin in Germany where I received my Master’s degree in Social Sciences. In 2012, I co-founded the network Third Generation Ost USA with the goal of providing a platform for new perspectives and approaches to researching the legacy of the German Democratic Republic (GDR).

Currently, I am a Consortial Faculty member at the School of Professional Studies of the City University of New York where I teach courses such as Social Statistics; Quantitative Reasoning; Race, Class, Gender and the Capstone. Additionally, I teach courses with the Anthropology and Sociology Department at Fordham University.

In the past, I have held several research and teaching fellowships. As a Cultural Policy Research Fellow I mapped and analyzed data on arts education and arts events in NYC. One report of which helped inform the cultural plan CreateNYC which was adopted by the City of New York in 2017. Teaching fellowships, such as Graduate Teaching Fellow, Writing Across the Curriculum Fellow, and Quantitative Reasoning Fellow, helped shape my pedagogy of student engagement and discussion-based learning. I have taught courses at the City College of New York, the College of Staten Island, and I am currently teaching with the School of Professional Studies, CUNY’s online campus, and with Hunter College. My courses include Research Methods, Mass Communication, Social Problems, Visual Sociology, Social Theory, and Sociology of Culture.