For her strong record of publications, contribution to the advancement of knowledge in her field, and successful integration of research and scholarship into her teaching practice, Eve Waltermaurer has received the Provost Award for Excellence in Scholarly/Creative Activity.
Waltermaurer, who joined the New Paltz faculty in 2003, is an Associate Professor of Sociology and the Director of Research and Evaluation for the Center for Research, Regional Engagement and Outreach (CRREO).
Waltermaurer’s scholarship focuses on violence, youth risk, health, and research methodology. Her training is in social epidemiology, and her research draws powerful connections between epidemiology and criminology, fields that have been traditionally distinct. In 2013, she was the lead editor of the seminal work, Epidemiological Criminology: Theory to Practice, which explored how interaction with crime (whether offenders, victims or law enforcement officers) puts people at unique health risks that they wouldn’t otherwise encounter.
The risk factors for disease and violence are often the same. “Poverty, poor neighborhoods, family and race are associated with a person’s risk for illnesses, and also their risk of engaging in criminal behaviors as well as being a victim of crime,” Waltermaurer noted. “When the disciplines of public health and criminology do not work conjointly, this linkage is easily missed. Understanding this linkage is instrumental to the reduction of both outcomes.”
Waltermaurer directs the Criminology Concentration in Sociology. Her courses include Crime and Society, Criminological Theory, Sociology of Violence, and Violence Against Women, as well as Research Methods and Social Statistics. In her teaching, Waltermaurer draws from her own research, and believes her sophisticated knowledge in methodology allows her to present the material to students in a meaningful, accessible way.
“I’m really good at research and statistics. Feeling so comfortable with it allows me to simplify it,” said Waltermaurer. Waltermaurer’s students who have advanced to graduate school frequently credit her teaching with preparing them for graduate-level methodology courses.
In her work at CRREO, Waltermaurer provides research and evaluation for numerous regional governmental and non-profit organizations. Waltermaurer defined her strengths as “translating conceptual ideas into measurable outcomes, defining clear and efficient metrics to assess program efficacy, and identifying key target groups for new programming.”
Her work at CRREO is varied. She has conducted analysis of complex medical records of over 4,500 diabetic patients over a nine-year period, evaluated juvenile program grants, and assisted Ulster County with its four-year Community Health Assessment. “I’m always juggling about eight projects at a time,” said Waltermaurer, noting that she can be called upon to assist at any stage in a project’s progress – beginning, middle or end.
Waltermaurer frequently serves as the interpreter between the data and the people who need to use it. She describes her work at CRREO and in the classroom as “symbiotic,” because the skills she has developed in explaining research to undergraduates have allowed her to communicate more effectively with service providers.
“Research makes me a better teacher and teaching makes me a better researcher,” she said.
– Despina Williams