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Lydia Voigt, Ph.D.

Reverend Joseph H. Fichter, S.J., Distinguished Professor

Lydia Voigt, Ph.D.
Lydia Voigt, Ph.D.

Dr. Lydia Voigt holds the Reverend Joseph H. Fichter, S.J., Distinguished Professorship in the Social Sciences at Loyola University New Orleans. She currently serves as a University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Sociology and the Director of Loyola’s Common Curriculum Program. She has been a member of Loyola’s faculty and academic community for over 35 years. During this time span, she has served on over 75 committees and task forces and has given 11 years combined administrative service in the Office of the Provost and 13 years combined service as chair of the Sociology Department.

From 2009 through 2013, Dr. Voigt served as senior vice provost for academic affairs. In her position as senior vice provost, she oversaw intercollegiate programs including graduate education, undergraduate (UG) common curriculum, the university honors program, UG faculty-student collaborative research program, interdisciplinary minors/majors, community-engaged learning and scholarship, study abroad programs, academic resources and enrichment programs, online learning, and professional and continuing studies (serving adult nontraditional learners). In addition, she supervised the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment, Office of Student Records, Office of Professional and Continuing Studies, Center for International Education, Academic Resource Center, Office of Community Engaged Learning, Teaching and Scholarship, Center for Intercultural Understanding, Women’s Resource Center, and the Upward Bound Program. She was also in charge of regional and national accreditation and was responsible for successfully (with honorable mention) completing Loyola’s Fifth-Year Interim Report for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

Her past administrative experience also includes service as interim provost and vice president for academic affairs (2001-2003). During her service in this position, she led the academic division in developing an integrated strategic academic agenda, the establishment of a campus common data warehouse, and spearheaded a national alumni engagement campaign. Prior to this, she served approximately four years as associate provost, with responsibility for institutional effectiveness, national and regional accreditation, institutional assessment, and development/implementation of the university’s comprehensive student retention strategic plan.

Dr. Voigt was the 1997 recipient of Loyola’s Dux Academicus Award for outstanding achievement in teaching, research, and service, and also awarded the Diversity Champions Award in 2001. In July 2001, the National Conference on Student Recruitment, Retention, and Marketing recognized Dr. Voigt’s leadership and Loyola’s campus-wide retention accomplishments with the 2001 award for excellence. In addition, in August 2001, she was the recipient of the 2001 Effective Retention Program Award presented by the National Consortium for Student Retention Data Exchange.

Dr. Voigt’s Ph.D. and M.A. degrees are in sociology from Boston College and her B.A. degree in psychology is from Boston University. Her main disciplinary areas of expertise include: criminology, human rights, restorative justice, contemporary social theories, statistics, research methodology, and the sociology of higher education. She has authored and/or co-authored ten books and over fifty publications including monographs, chapters, journal articles, and evaluation studies; and she has given over 100 scholarly papers and invited presentations at professional conferences around the world. Over the years Dr. Voigt has also been engaged in public service in the New Orleans metropolitan community, which has included service on numerous task forces, statewide commissions, and participation in various research initiatives. In addition to her publications and presentations in the field of criminology and sociology, she has also pursued the scholarship of administration, including presentations, papers, and consultation on topics related to important issues in higher education (HE), such as student success (retention and graduation), assessment of the quality of student learning, the HE quality enhancement model, program evaluation, and strategic planning.


Sample Selection of  Research/Scholarly Activities




Invited journal article:  Voigt. L., and Thornton, W. E. 2015. “Long-term disaster recovery through the lens of Katrina.” American Behavioral Scientist (Special Issue dedicated to the Tenth-year Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina), September 2015.

Book: Voigt, L., Thornton, W. E., and Harper,  D. W. (Eds.). 2015. Preventing Lethal Violence in New Orleans, A Great American City. Lafayette, LA: Louisiana State University Press.


Book: Voigt, L., Thornton, W.E., and Harper, D. W. 2016. Why Violence: Leading Questions Regarding the Conceptualization and Reality of Violence in Society (2nd Ed.) Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.


Professional Conference Presentations


Invited Presentation/Professional Workshop: Voigt, L., and Stieffel, D. 2015. “Graduate Recruitment and Retention Strategies and Best Practices.” Jesuit Graduate Enrollment Management Professionals (JGAP). New Orleans, LA, April.


Paper: Thornton, W. E., and Voigt, L. 2016. “Effectiveness of Witness Intimidation Programs and Policies: Current Trends.” American Society of Criminology (ASC). New Orleans, LA, November.


Paper: Voigt, L. and Thornton, W. E. 2016. “ Student Engagement in Community Justice Issues in New Orleans.”  American Society of Criminology (ASC). New Orleans, LA, November.


Panel on new book, Preventing Lethal Violence in New Orleans: A Great American City by Voigt, L., Harper, D. W. and Thornton, W. E. 2016. American Society of Criminology (ASC). New Orleans, LA, November.

Updated: June 23, 2015


Ph.D., Boston College, 1977; M.A., Boston College, 1971; B.A., Boston University, 1969

Classes Taught

  • Violence in Society
  • Criminal Behavior
  • Violence & Human Rights
  • Restorative Justice
  • Violence & Democracy