Amy Leisenring

Director of the Academic Counseling Center for Excellence in the Social Sciences (ACCESS)

Dr. Amy Leisenring
Dr. Amy Leisenring

Dr. Amy Leisenring was appointed as the Director of the Academic Counseling Center for Excellence in the Social Sciences (ACCESS) in August, 2016. She also serves as a Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology and Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, and has been a member of the SJSU faculty since 2005. Dr. Leisenring received her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Colorado in 2004, where she also received certification in Women’s Studies and the Graduate Teacher Training Program. She holds a B.A. in sociology from Miami University of Ohio (1994) and an M.A. in sociology from New Mexico State University (1998).

Dr. Leisenring is highly committed to ensuring that all students have what they need and deserve in order to be successful. Her current research focuses on students’ experiences in higher education, focusing particularly on race, gender, and class-based inequalities. She has engaged in a number of collaborative research projects with students. She is currently working with several students to analyze data that was collected by her Spring 2016 Advanced Qualitative Research Methods class for a project that explored the academic experiences of undergraduate racial and ethnic minority students in the College of Social Sciences, focusing on how these students understand what it means to be successful and the factors that have shaped their success. Dr. Leisenring is excited for the opportunity to draw from her research findings to help ACCESS to continue to grow and meet the needs of the students in the College of Social Sciences.

Dr. Leisenring teaches classes in the areas of gender, family, and qualitative research methods. Her initial research was in the area of violence and victimization. She has published multiple articles focusing on the experiences of women who have experienced intimate partner violence and the criminal justice system response to domestic violence.

When not working she enjoys hiking, biking, swimming, reading, cooking, and spending time outdoors with her family.