Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs

Cynthia Struthers, Ph.D. - Associate Professor of Sociology

  • Professor of Rural Sociology
  • PhD, Michigan State University, Sociology

Cindy Struthers teaches courses in community, family, and poverty for the Profile photo of Dr. Cynthia StruthersDepartment of Sociology and Anthropology and is developing new courses for the IIRA's Community Economic Development program. At this time she is scheduled to teach Advanced Community Development Theory and Practice. Her research areas are family, health, and housing and her work is frequently community-based.

Recent research projects include a community health needs assessment of Pike County, Illinois and a community health needs assessment for Illini Community Hospital in Pittsfield, Illinois. Statewide research projects include the 2013 Illinois Rural Life Poll and the 2013 Illinois Rural Youth Survey.

In addition to her teaching and research responsibilities she is the Executive Director and Treasurer of the Rural Sociological Society (RSS). The RSS is a professional social science association that promotes the generation, application, and dissemination of sociological knowledge. The Society seeks to enhance the quality of rural life, communities, and the environment (

She is a member of the Community Development Society. Her ten year term with the Statewide Affordable Housing Task Force recently ended. In this capacity she advocated at the state level for affordable housing in rural Illinois.


Contact Info

Cynthia Struthers

Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs

Western Illinois University

Phone: 309) 298-2282