Date of Award

Spring 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Public Administration (DPA)


Public Policy and Administration

Committee Chairperson

Angela Kline, Ph.D

Committee Member

Michelle Wade, Ph.D

Committee Member

Sami Abdel-Salam, Ph.D


Examining different factors that causes an individual, particularly an ex-offender, to re-engage in criminal activities (also known as recidivism) is a recurring topic when discussing the U.S. criminal justice system. Within the field of criminology, an individual's engagement in criminal activities could be due to biological, psychological, or sociological factors. For the purpose of this study, understanding the sociological factors related to criminal activity was further explored. This exploration focused on the importance of community building and how bonding with others can create a better reentry process for the ex-offender, post-incarceration. Additionally, with a better reentry process, ex-offenders’ may be deterred from engaging in criminal activities. A qualitative method consisting of open-ended survey questions and semi-structured interviews was used for this study. The findings suggest that the lack of opportunities for ex-offenders to bond with their community hinders a successful reentry process post-incarceration.