The broad nature of Jeremy Vander Hoek’s academic experience has led him to an affection for interdisciplinary approaches that consider the integration of theory and praxis. Through his exploration of sociology, Jeremy focused on interpretive sociology with an interest in phenomenology, ethnomethodology, and analysis. This focus gave him an opportunity to take on a teaching assistant position with Dr. Kieran Bonner at St. Jerome’s University over the Fall 2018 and Winter 2019 terms. As a TA Jeremy worked with Dr. Bonner to expand his understanding of these sociological disciplines as well as introduce them to students. Through this experience, Jeremy was able to dig deeper into the need for interdisciplinary dialectic knowledge creation when approaching complex social issues and questions. In legal studies Jeremy developed an interest in criminology and the justice system more broadly. This interest centered around the related questions, why do people commit crimes and how does our answer to that question impacts how society ought to treat these people? History and Political Science have grounded these studies with a broad understanding of certain socio-political landscapes.
Outside of academia, Jeremy’s advocacy work has propelled him to this program. The advocacy he has participated in includes working toward the acceptance of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a review of the Safe Third Country Agreement with the United States, and an increase in the total number of refugees accepted into Canada.
Both academia and advocacy have influenced Jeremy’s research interests. These interests include the approach colonial socio-political and legal systems take in responding to Indigenous peoples’ rights and claims of injustice; the conflict between refugee rights according to international law and state’s securing of those rights; and the activity of global actors in reinforcing or deterring democratic norms. Given his sociological background he is also excited to explore further research interests through the program.