Loyola University Chicago

Department of Sociology

Grad Instructors

Melissa Howell

Title/s:  Part Time Instructor

Specialty Area: Medical Sociology, Diabetes Care, Social Policy, Research Methods

Email: mhowell1@luc.edu


Curriculum Vitae

Ms. Melissa Gesbeck Howell is a Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Sociology (PhD expected 2014).  She earned an MA in Sociology from Loyola University Chicago and a BA in Sociology and Gender & Women’s Studies from University of Illinois at Chicago.  Her primary research interests center around issues of wellness and illness in our culture and the ways that we approach them through caregiving, the health care system, and public policy.  Recent projects include the Family Food Choice Study (a photo-elicitation interview study about how parents make food choices for themselves and their children) and the Women’s Health Access Project (a quantitative survey about perceived access to health care services).  Her dissertation, Negotiating Diabetes:  Overlapping Social Worlds of Care is an institutional ethnography about diabetes, diabetes care, and the ways that various stakeholders influence how we understand and approach the issues around diabetes care.

 Ms. Howell has taught several classes that draw on her training as a research methodologist and studies in public policy, health care, social inequalities, social history, gender theory, social movements, health care, food politics, and media (among others), including Social Problems, Sociology of Sex and Gender, and Poverty and Welfare in America.  Additionally, she has taught a collaborative, interdisciplinary service learning course within the Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing (HSM355: Community-based Research, Advocacy, and Service in Healthcare) and has acted as a consultant for future service learning curriculum development in Health Systems Management program.


MA, Sociology

Loyola University Chicago (2009)

BA, Sociology and Gender & Women’s Studies

University of Illinois at Chicago (2007)

AA, Liberal Arts

William Rainey Harper College, Palatine, IL (2005)