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Katrina "Kitty" Groeller, M.A.

Department of Sociology,
Michigan State University, MI

Kitty is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology at Michigan State University. She is devoted to college access and postsecondary success.

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A Spartan sociologist


Undergraduate Education

Kitty received her B.A in Sociology from Michigan State University in 2017. As an undergraduate, she coordinated multiple student visits to regional sociology conferences with the Undergraduate Sociological Association, facilitated a service-based spring break trip with Students Today, Leaders Forever, studied abroad, and presented work on marginalization and visual sociology.

AmeriCorps Service

After graduation, Kitty joined the MSU College Advising Corps where she served as a college adviser for two years at Orchard View High School in Muskegon, MI. The focus of her service was to support low-income, underrepresented, and first-generation students as they navigated the college search and choice process.


Daily life as a college adviser included college representative visits, campus tours, one-on-one student and family meetings, data reports, College Ambassador trainings, classroom presentations, after-school workshops, and so much more.

Kitty worked with national and regional organizations, school administrators, teachers, and families on large initiatives such as Michigan College Month, College Cash Campaign, and Decision Day.

Graduate Education

At the completion of her service, Kitty returned to Michigan State University to obtain her M.A (2022) and Ph.D (exp. 2024) in Sociology. Her scholarly interests lie in college access, higher education, and teaching and learning. Kitty is currently a Residential College of the Arts and Humanities (RCAH) Fellow. In addition to her doctoral degree, Kitty is obtaining a Certificate in College Teaching.

In her spare time, Kitty enjoys a variety of hobbies, such as spending time outdoors, arts and crafts, and watching Formula 1.


Ferris State University campus trip, September 2017


Hocking Hills State Park, November 2021


Curriculum Vitae


How students navigate educational institutions and the academy


Navigating college advising
Since March 2023

Investigating how college advisers in public schools navigate their professional roles and experience their school communities with semi-structured interviews and a nationwide survey.

Breaking the Mirror of Linear Sociocultural Discourses
Since October 2022

Tracking the evolution of student understandings of culture and investigating non-neutrality in reflective, written coursework as incorporated in arts and humanities education with Kyle Chong.

Invisible Obstacles, Hidden Curriculums
Since February 2021

Exploring the institutional systems of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives in the academy with Angelica Ruvalcaba, M.A and Jennifer Lai, Ph.D.

Student learning perspectives: Differences by race and class during the COVID-19 pandemic
March 2020 - March 2021

Examining the perspectives of students of color and low income students in a large Midwestern university after adaptation to distanced coursework.

Fostering the sociological imagination for a complex social world 


People and Environment
Spring 2023

Understanding the reproduction of social inequalities through social demography, epidemiology, and environmental sociology.

Introduction to Sociology
Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2022

Developing the sociological imagination through focus on the principles, concepts, and nature of sociological inquiry.

Youth and Society
Summer 2022

Exploring the sociological understanding of youth and adolescence and the interdependent relationship between young people and the social world.

Individual and Society
Spring 2022

Recognizing the reciprocal relationship between culture and individual perceptions, beliefs, values, and communication styles.

Family and Society
Fall 2021

Concentrating on family development, family roles, and the diversity of families in the United States using a life course perspective.

Social Inequality
Fall 2019

Examining the the formation, change, trends, and consequences of class, gender, and race-based inequalities in society.

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