Aaron Kinzel

Lecturer II in Criminal Justice Studies
Aaron Kinzel
College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters
Behavioral Sciences
College-Wide Programs
1202 Social Sciences Building | 4901 Evergreen Road | Dearborn, MI 48128
Virtual via Zoom and by Appointment Only in 1202 SSB at UM-Dearborn

Teaching Areas:

Criminology & Criminal Justice Studies, Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Biography and Education

Aaron T. Kinzel is a faculty member in Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Michigan-Dearborn.

Kinzel's teaching and research areas of expertise are education, corrections, and public policy. He is a consultant that has worked nationally on criminal justice reform and completed contracts with numerous organizations, including the U.S. Department of Justice.

Kinzel's childhood was surrounded by poverty and crime with many of his family members having justice system involvement. He spent nearly a decade incarcerated as a teenager and is passionate about humanizing correctional populations.

Teaching and Research

Research Areas: Carceral State, Criminal Justice, Criminology, Prison Education, Public Policy, and Violence.

Courses Taught:

Selected Publications

Kinzel, A., & Leighton, P. (2015). William S. Tregea: Prisoners on Criminology: Convict Life Stories and Crime Prevention. Critical Criminology, 23(2), 215-218.

Scott, L., Stokes, C., Kinzel, A. (2019). Incarceration in Michigan: Grounding the National Debate in State Practice, The Struggle to Express a Native American Identity in the Carceral State, MSU Press.

Smith, J.M., Kinzel, A. (2021). Carceral Citizenship as Strength: Formerly Incarcerated Activists, Civic Engagement and Criminal Justice Transformation. Critical Criminology, 29, 93–110.

Bell, C., Kinzel, A., & Akakpo, Y. (2022). Continuity of the “code”: A review of the subcultures and informal social norms in prisons, streets, and schools. Sociology Compass, e13010.

Awards and Recognition

  • University of Michigan-Dearborn, Difference Maker Award: https://www.michigandifferencemakers.com/aaron_kinzel
  • University of Michigan-Dearborn: King, Chavez and Parks Future Faculty Fellowship from the Michigan Legislature for doctoral studies: ($35,000).
  • Teaching Excellence Award, Western Michigan University, Department of Sociology, College of Arts and Sciences.
  • Wrote and awarded over $350,000.00 of grants total for various projects connected to criminal justice.