Department: Behavioral Sciences School: College of Arts and Sciences Campus: Old Westbury
Member of NYIT Since: 2011
When Emily Restivo, Ph.D., was looking for her first full-time teaching position out of graduate school, there was no question that New York was where she wanted to be. After completing her degrees at universities in Florida, the Malverne, N.Y.-native and one of NYIT's newest assistant professors in the Department of Behavioral Sciences sought camaraderie and the opportunity to work one-on-one with colleagues.
"After being at NYIT for just one semester, I know I have found a work-family that supports me in my research, teaching, and personal endeavors," she says.
Restivo specializes in criminology and criminal justice. While completing her master's degree at Florida State University, she participated in a Nazi Era Study Abroad Program and traveled to the Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, and Poland for six weeks. Her research interests include juvenile delinquency and family and parenting-related causes of adolescent crime. She is currently researching a comprehensive evaluation of the labeling perspective, which is used for categorizing criminal behavior.
"I have long had a fascination with the study of crime and deviance," she says. "This interest developed at an early age due to a sibling who abused drugs despite his good upbringing. Was this biologically predetermined, psychologically ingrained, the result of social forces, or a combination of all the above? As my knowledge of the causes of crime became more sophisticated, I began to ponder the role that society and government plays in creating crime."
Restivo's interest escalated with the support of her mother, who she says has been her "teacher, counselor, role model, and friend my whole life," and several passionate professors, who influenced her career path. Now she is aiming to do the same for NYIT students.
"I recently had a student come during office hours to let me know she had decided to switch her major to sociology because she loved my class so much," Restivo says. "It's a wonderful feeling to watch a concept click with a student."