St. Paul, Minn. – Senior sociology major Sean D’Amico (Spring Hill, Fla.) has been awarded third prize in the 52nd Annual Midwest Sociological Society Student Paper Competition.

In his third-prize paper “On-Campus Barriers to Social Integration: Student Employment and Status Cultures in Higher Education,” D’Amico examined whether students’ social class background influenced their friendship networks and relative focus on academics and extracurricular activities.

D’Amico surveyed students at a liberal arts college, using student work-study status as an indicator of family income. He found that students had some preference for friends of a similar socio-economic background. Despite this friendship preference, students did not vary in academic focus and participation in extra-curricular activities.

D’Amico will receive his prize and present his paper at the Annual Meeting of the Midwest Sociological Society in Kansas City, Mo., in March.

The Midwest Sociological Society, founded in 1936, is a professional organization of academic and applied sociologists as well as students of the discipline. While the MSS membership area formally includes nine states – Illinois, Missouri, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota, Kansas, South Dakota and North Dakota – more than one-third of the members are from other parts of the nation and the world.

Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 2,045 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism, and civic engagement. Learn more at

February 10 2015

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