Behavioral Sciences

Trish Morris

Trish MorrisAssistant Professor

Phone: (417)873-7615
Office: Pearsons Hall 219-A

Dr. Trish Morris was awarded her doctoral degree in sociology from Northeastern University in Boston, MA in the spring of 2009 and joined the Drury faculty later that fall.  As an alumnus of a small liberal arts college (Rhodes College in Memphis, TN), she is excited to be at Drury.  For her, having the opportunity to engage with students in small classes is a tremendously rewarding aspect of the profession.  At Drury, Professor Morris regularly teaches courses such as Introduction to Sociology, Statistics (at the undergraduate and master’s level), Animals and Society, and Medical Sociology.    

Professor Morris has had a long-time interest in the study of medical professions, social psychology, the sociology of emotion, the interactions between people and non-human animals, death and dying, gender, and work-related stress.  Combining all of these interests, her doctoral dissertation research detailed the work of veterinarians in the context of euthanasia situations.  Like other sociological studies of medical ethics, her research is interested in the ways in which young professionals define, approach, and eventually resolve ethical questions in their work.  For this research, she was a recipient of a Charlotte Newcombe Fellowship by the Woodrow Wilson Foundation.  Since arriving at Drury, Dr. Morris has co-authored a book chapter and sole authored a paper in one of her favorite journals, The Journal of Contemporary Ethnography.  However, of all of her scholarly accomplishments since coming to Drury, she is most proud of the publication of her book, Blue Juice: Euthanasia in Veterinary Medicine, derived from nearly two years of ethnographic research among veterinarians.  She is so grateful to the dedicated veterinarians who saw value in her research, generously answered her many questions, and who allowed her to see their ordinary as well as private, emotional moments.  She hopes that the book does them justice and that the people who read this book will be able to see a new side to this fascinating profession.

Since arriving at Drury, Dr. Morris has also worked on the Planning Grant for Workforce Education in Rural Communities for Cox College of Nursing to identify the health professional workforce shortages in a rural region of Missouri and assess the impact on access to care as well as gather data regarding the demographics of a potential student population in five rural regions of Missouri.  She has also delivered papers at regional and national meetings such as the Eastern Sociological Society and the American Sociological Association on a variety of topics related to her research.  Most recently, representatives from AWSELVA (Animal Welfare Science, Ethics & Law Veterinary Association) invited her to give a talk at Nottingham University’s Centre for Applied Bioethics.  In the fall of 2013, she was honored and humbled to be awarded Drury’s prestigious Faculty Award for Scholarship.

As the faculty advisor to the Drury Outdoor Club, she enjoys taking students skiing, hiking, climbing, canoeing, and camping.  She has also recently become the faculty advisor to the Brony Club.  This year she and Dr. Derossett, adviser to Drury’s Anime Club, will make the first annual Drury trip to a conference called Naka-Kon in Kansas City.  Naka-kon designs events to entertain and educate both anime enthusiasts and those who wish to learn more about the American otaku subculture as well as many diverse facets of popular and traditional Japanese culture.  She enjoys being a campus advisor to both these clubs because it allows her to spend time working with students outside the classroom.     

B.A., Rhodes College, 1998
M.A., Northeastern University, 2003
Ph.D., Northeastern University, 2009

Drury University faculty member since 2009
Assistant Professor since 2009