Jennifer Trost

Clinical Faculty - Sociology


  • Education
  • PhD in Organizational Leadership Policy and Development: University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
    MS in Sociology and Applied Community and Economic Development Fellow: Illinois State University

  • Research Interests
  • I conduct research to bring awareness (and hope to change policy) on students in postsecondary who have or are currently experiencing homelessness. This work is done in conjunction with Dr. Jarrett Gupton, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. We currently have two book chapters and are interested in analyzing the trends and pathways of Minnesota's students experiencing homelessness.


As a St. Thomas alum, I bleed purple. I am a Tommie. My experience at St. Thomas shaped my social justice agenda, brought me my best friends, and exposed me to the field of Sociology, which I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!!!

After graduating from St. Thomas, I spent my time working to increase educational access and success for historically underrepresented communities. This interest in access, success, and the transition between K- 12 and higher education eventually led me to a graduate program focused on higher education and policy. This is one of my greatest passions and I absolutely can’t spend enough time thinking about higher education, equity, and empowerment.

As a higher education scholar and lover of education I always wanted to come back to St. Thomas, but my passion and research interests didn’t feel like a great fit for the St. Thomas community. When I found out St. Thomas was opening a 2-year school, focused on historically marginalized and underrepresented communities, I couldn’t believe it. I have never been so excited to bring all my loves together!!! ! Dougherty is a perfect example of higher education changing, growing, and innovating to meet students’ needs. I’m honored to be a part of this new venture for St. Thomas, thrilled to be working with and inspired by students to achieve their educational dreams, and can’t wait to see how Dougherty changes the landscape of higher education in Minnesota.