With more than 18 years of experience in higher education, Sawyer is a certified diversity trainer and conflict mediator who has held positions in residential life, admissions, multicultural affairs, fraternity and sorority affairs, student activities, experiential learning, student leadership and STEM retention. He has extensive experience in sponsored grant management, budgeting, recruiting, advising, retention, mentoring, supervising, assessment and conflict management. In addition, he has experience with creating and implementing a host of social, cultural and educational programs for campus and community partners.
A member of the Quinnipiac community since 2012, he recently earned tenure and a promotion to associate professor in the department of sociology, criminal justice and anthropology. Sawyer is also a clinical professor at the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine.
His scholarly focus is on race, social justice, urban education, hip-hop culture, visual sociology, prisoner reentry and youth critical media literacy. He recently founded the #HipHopHeals Project, a community-based recording studio for Haitian and Dominican youth living in the Dominican Republic. In addition, he created the #HipHopProject, a youth, hip-hop and social justice program at Quinnipiac.
Outside of his work in public schools, Sawyer is partnering with a fellow scholar on research projects focusing on the intersectional experiences and social mobility of black male students at predominately white institutions. His research adds to the work of scholars interested in finding solutions to the plight of students of color at all levels of the educational system.
He earned a doctorate and a master’s degree in sociology and another master’s in cultural foundations of education from Syracuse University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Hartwick College.