Saint Joseph's University

Sylvia M. DeSantis, MA

Program Director

Sylvia M DeSantis is the Director of the Graduate Criminal Justice Programs with research interests that span the Humanities, popular culture, and e-learning. As an early adopter in educational technologies, Sylvia was one of five faculty recruited to teach the first online course at VA Tech in 1995.

Before Saint Joseph’s, Sylvia managed faculty, budget, and learning materials at Penn State’s Justice and Safety Institute (JASI) whose program's success was nationally recognized as quantifiably improving Pennsylvania’s Federal ranking in child support collection; she is also former coordinator of Penn State University Libraries Instructional Programs, directing the curricular development and online delivery of educational content for thousands of users at 25 campus locations across the Commonwealth.

Straddling the line between the Humanities and computer technologies, and focusing on issues ranging from holistic health and animal advocacy, to young adults and engagement with cultural literacy, Sylvia’s cross-genre work has been published on the Web and in a variety of both literary and popular venues including the Chicken Soup for the Soul® series, Harvard University’s African American National Biography project, and Summer Shorts, a middle school anthology, among others. She has also mentored for the Little Owl Mentoring program, working with incarcerated teens between the ages of 13 and 22 interested in honing their poetry skills.

Always intrigued with issues of the Other, dichotomization, and deindividualization, Sylvia addresses rankism and unfair treatment and resource allocation in higher education in Academic Apartheid: Waging the Adjunct War.

A nationally accredited holistic educator, Sylvia is also a graduate of Mount Nittany Institute of Natural Health where she trained in Reflexology and Shiatsu, and is a practicing Usui/Tibetan Reiki Master-Teacher. In Watercharms: Ocean-Reiki Meditations she addresses the immense healing potential within each of us.

Courses Taught:

  • SOC 219: Social Deviance
  • CRJ 615: Youth Cultures and Deviance
  • CRJ 607: Multiculturalism and Diversity
  • ITS 690: Advanced Instructional Design

Published Works:

  • DeSantis, S. M. (2011). Watercharms: Ocean-reiki meditations. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing.
  • DeSantis, S. M. (Ed.). (2011). Academic aparthied: Waging the adjunct war.  Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars.
  • DeSantis, S. M. (2008/2011). Promoting active and collaborative learning. In McGonigle, D. & M. K. (Eds.), Knowledge generation through nursing informatics. Boston, MA: Jones and Bartlett.

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