Skip to main content

Faculty Members

Bjorkman, Sharon.jpg

Professor

Sharon Bjorkman

Ph.D. - Loyola University

M.A.  - Loyola University

Years Teaching: 17

Dr. Bjorkman is committed to quality instruction and student success at Pikes Peak Community College. She focuses on engaged learning; meaning students are actively involved in their learning opportunities, in and outside the classroom. Dr. Bjorkman is committed to equity in education by bringing past and current marginalized groups to the center of the curriculum. 
In addition to teaching, Dr. Bjorkman has worked on numerous research projects ranging from low-income housing for elderly in Chicago to homebirth midwifery. Most recently, Dr. Bjorkman has supported El Paso’s 4th Judicial District's Minority Over-Representation Committee on youth incarceration. 
Current interests include securing free or low-cost textbooks for sociology students at PPCC. While education is the primary vehicle for upward social mobility in the U.S.,college  has become cost prohibiting for many. Reducing the burden of textbook expenses is an immediate way to support financially marginalized students.

Nikolai, Gloria.jpg

Professor

Gloria Nikolai

M.A. - University of Colorado

B.A. - University of Colorado

Years Teaching: 26 Years

As an applied Sociologist before coming to PPCC, I used the knowledge base of Sociology to address social problems in society. I worked at a juvenile prison and then a wilderness residential treatment program with emotionally and behaviorally disturbed adolescents to improve their ability to live in the community without engaging in criminal and violent behavior. I then shifted to preventive programs with low-income families of young children to address parenting concerns, mental and physical health issues, and access to public resources. I also worked as a caseworker for adolescent girls. These years of applied Sociology work inform my teaching in significant ways. I taught for 5 years at UCCS before arriving at PPCC in 2001. Having experience with diverse populations, the criminal justice system, and social services brings applied Sociology into the classroom every day. I am a lifelong learner who loves sharing the world of Sociology and sociological insight with students.

Swanson, Gina.jpg

Department Chair

Gina Thorne

M.A. - University of Wyoming

B.A. - Oklahoma State

Years Teaching: 23

Gina was recognized with full Professor rank in the fall of 2018.  She has been teaching at the undergraduate level for 23 years. Her first teaching position was at the Air Force Academy, while she was on active duty.  There she taught courses in leadership, sociology and behavioral sciences. After leaving the military in 2002, she started teaching as an adjunct at PPCC. Over the next several years, she also taught at CSU-Pueblo and UCCS. In 2007 she was hired as full-time faculty at PPCC.  She has also served as department chair.  She has taught the following courses:  Intro Sociology I/II, Sociology of the Family, Gender, Urban Sociology, Urban Social Problems, Sociological Theory, Homicide, Advanced Topics in Leadership, Introduction to the Behavioral Sciences and Film and Society.  She currently serves as a faculty liaison for Service Learning, a High Impact practice.

Adjunct Instructors

Dave Seyfert - SOC - resized.jpg

Adjunct Instructor

David Seyfert

M.A. - University Colorado

B.A. - University Colorado

Molly Cotner - SOC - resized .jpg

Adjunct Instructor

Molly Cotner

M.A. - University of Colorado

B.A. - Colorado State University

Adjunct Instructor

James Matson

M.A. - University of Hawaii

B.A. - Carleton College

Adjunct Instructor

Jeremy White

M.A. - University Colorado

B.A. - University Colorado