Jack Vazzana, PhD

Associate Professor

Department of Sociology

Kent State University

East Liverpool, Ohio

Room 305F Main

fax 412.882.5184

Cake Photo Caption


I have spent thirty-eight years in classrooms and have had over 9000 students some of which liked me and some who did not. Of course, that goes reciprocally! Through those years and the years in which I grew up (the forties and fifties) I witnessed a great ride from the mechanical to the virtual or electronic age. All along, however, people fabricated my construction of reality of which I am grateful. It is people who I met, experienced and reacted to as well as them reacting to me that made life sometimes a joy and sometimes misery, but that is the way it goes. One does not become trustworthy if they are never trusted, as it is said, and one does not become a whole person without personally growing through interaction. The classroom taught me that if one is self-centered and can not take criticism - they had better look for another job because the day a teacher believes they are a good one, is the day they become a bad one! It is all predicated on dealing with people. Recently a sociologist said that one has to also change with the times. In education, that means bowing to online courses. I agree, but that does not mean one has to accept them. Online courses have significantly changed education and the nature of human existence. No longer do people have to interact with what is happening in the world because they can see it on the computer. The problem is they may not understand nor  learn anything about themselves from paucity of experience. The only way one grows as a person is to put those personal ideas out there and see how well they stand up. Don't do this and one will never know what their talents and failures are nor will they ever get to know who they are existentially other than what the little screen tells them to do in the rat cage. I am criticized every day in class and thank the students for that - it puts me in a certain place that I can experience creatively. That is THE important change the sociologist missed - not the change that one has to become another lemming and  just "go along with things."  Sometimes the best learning for me has occurred when I was aggravated by someone or I aggravated them. Then I had to find out just what kind of a person I was in terms of defending or regretting what I said. Often it worked out and often it did not, BUT at least it was better than being a monumental wimp and hiding behind the "not offending" philosophy. People are all different and no one is equal to anyone else. Some are better and some are less - so it goes. Respect and strive for personal quality and avoid  the mediocre. Never believe there is not someone better than you. There always is - deal with it. Your personal standard of excellence built on face-to-face contact may not be as good as another's and it even  may be wrong. It is, however, you standing for something built on an actual foundation of  interaction and that is a great deal better than going out on your knees.
Dr Jack

Go To Dr Jack's Loft

Courses Taught
Over Career

US History I
Politics and Gvmt
Intro Philosophy
Art History
German I
Introduction to Psych
Marriage and Family
Family Sociology
Introductory  Sociology
Indiv and Society
Childhood Sociology
Law and Society
Educational Psych
Independent Study
Minorities and Justice
Social Analysis
 Social Problems
Domestic Violence