PhD Students in Sociology
Based on in-depth, semistructured interviews, Rebecca's master's thesis explored the experiences of Mormon feminists navigating their religious and feminist identities. Her varied research and scholarly interests include religion, gender and sexuality, economic sociology, and higher education. She has worked on a number of research projects with Brandeis faculty and colleagues. With Dr. Wendy Cadge, she is exploring the role of college and university chaplains in the modern, diverse environment of higher education, and is aiding in assessment of an interfaith campus chaplaincy training program titled “Campus Chaplaincy for a Multifaith World: Engaging Diversity, Cultivating Connections.” Rebecca is also passionate about LGBTQ topics. She worked collaboratively with a graduate student at the University of Connecticut on the “SWS Lavender Report Card” which evaluated PhD-granting sociology departments in the U.S. on their support of LGBT students. She also collaborated with a fellow Brandeis sociology colleague, Samantha Leonard, to help initiate research toward the creation of the Brandeis LGBTQ Archives located in the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program. Research for this project included locating materials for the archives and conducting oral history interviews with LGBTQ Brandeis alumni.
Thomas' general research interests include science, technology, culture, health, and the environment. His previous work focused on psychiatric attitudes towards the promise of neuroimaging in clinical practice. He is currently working on a project that examines how biotechnology is (or is not) being integrated into forest conservation and restoration efforts.
Since graduating from UC Santa Barbara with a BA in sociology, Lauren has worked in multiple educational settings, including teaching drawing and painting at an art school for children, working as a para-educator for students with Autism and ADHD, and volunteering in various public school classrooms. She eventually obtained her Social Science teaching credential and Master of Arts in Education at UC Santa Cruz, and taught in History and English in public schools for two years. Informed by her work with students and their families, Lauren is interested in gender, race, and capitalism, and is interested more specifically in the history and comparative study of care work, dispossession of common resources, the family, and reproductive labor under neoliberalism
Before pursuing a career in academia, Sanchita worked in Indian advertising as a strategic planner for five years. Primarily a qualitative methodologist, her research interests revolve around gender and sexuality, enthusiastic sexual consent, pleasure, safety, sexual hierarchies, partner selection, South Asia, caste dynamics and discrimination.
Korey's interests include sustainability, development, consumption, culture, qualitative coding and mixed methods. His previous work looked at sustainable development efforts in Sikkim, India, to further explore how actors in the region navigate the complex intersection of economic growth and the environment.
Zachary's thesis work was on media framing of Antifa. In a content analysis of top U.S. newspapers, Zachary found that reports of violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, during the Unite the Right rally in 2017 played a major role in the framing of counter-protesters as members of Antifa absent any self-identification as such. In other words, publications were effectively creating their own Antifa. Zachary's research interests include media framing, societal unrest, social movements, social theory, and mechanisms of social change.
Prior to attending Brandeis, Rachel worked in northern Thailand with an NGO advocating for the release of political prisoners in Burma. Her research interests include cultural sociology, race/ethnicity, gender relations, and sexuality, particularly in Southeast and East Asia.
Master of Arts (Individualized Study: Artistic Activism), New York University
Bachelor of Arts (Liberal Arts), New School University
Sarah's research interests include social movements, Sociology of culture, and political Sociology. Prior to arriving at Brandeis, she worked closely with the Center for Artistic Activism as a research fellow and has completed research projects for the British Council and the Urban Democracy Lab. She is currently researching conspiracy theory narratives in US politics and social movement abeyance.
Jing's general research interests include sociology of art and culture, sociology of education, inequality, globalization, and nationalism, particularly cultural nationalism and postcolonial nationalism.
She is also pursuing the joint MA in Sociology and Women & Gender Studies at Brandeis. Before coming to Brandeis, Samantha served as a Youth Development worker with the Peace Corps in the Eastern Caribbean and has worked for several years in the U.S. in direct services, primarily in foster care and domestic violence counseling/advocacy. Her research interests include gender/sexuality, cultural sociology, violence/trauma, community, and creative practices in social movements/social change.
Lijun's research interests include religion, transnational migration, China and Chinese diaspora, gender and family. Her previous work focused on Christianity among Chinese immigrants in Italy. Before coming to Brandeis, Lijun was a visiting researcher at Boston University for one semester, and worked as a Chinese language teacher at the University of Bologna for four years
Prior to attending Brandeis Nicholas taught reading and social studies as a member of Teach For America in Chicago and Gary, Indiana. Nicholas' interests include race and class based inequalities, educational inequality, as well as social movements and social change.
Ann's interests include environmental sociology, social movements, community and urban sociology, community based research, and qualitative methods. Prior to attending Brandeis, Ann spent four years as an AmeriCorps member through the Bonner Service Leaders Program. Her current research focuses on the environmental movement with particular attention to the relationships between collective action, narrative, emotion, and climate change.
Manning's interests include culture, creative arts, media, technology, health, migration and urbanization. Her previous work looked at the opinions on land conversion among different generations of farmers during the urbanization of a village in East China. She is currently working on a collaborative project that examines the social process behind individual eating disorders.
PhD Students in Sociology and Heller School for Social Policy
Sneha is from all over the map, with the US being her second country of residence and Boston being her fifth home in a decade. For her doctoral work, she is interested in looking at how/what social, symbolic, and physical boundaries intersect in the concept of citizenship.
BA, African/African American studies and educational studies (Carleton College) and EdM, education policy (Harvard University). Jenny's research seeks to apply critical geography to analyses of social problems and social policy, and considers how the spatial distribution of social and economic resources shapes opportunities for historically underserved groups. Additionally, she is interested in how market fundamentalist policy interacts with economic and racial residential segregation to shape outcomes for children and families. Her current and recent research examines how: private school vouchers impact educational opportunity for low income students and students of color; residential segregation influences children's exposure to disease and chronic health conditions; the parents of Black and Latinx students view inter-district school desegregation programs; and the impact of neighborhood contexts and resources on outcomes for public school students with disabilities.</>
MA Students in Sociology and Women's and Gender Studies Program
Generally, my areas of interest are gender and sexuality, social movements, body and embodiment, medical sociology, and culture. As an aspiring scholar/activist, I attempt to analyze the power dynamics and forms of inequality within the movement. In my recent study, I examined how "queerness" functions as a mechanism of exclusion in China's LGBTQ activism. I'm currently working on two projects, one takes an organizational approach to study East China's male sex work industry, and the other focuses on the emergent field of transgender medicine in China.
Jier has researched women's movements in Japan and China during the early 20th century and is now interested in women's reproductive rights and labor worldwide.
Visiting PhD Scholar
Hadiza Hassan is a Visiting Scholar and Fulbright Fellow in the Department of Sociology and the African Diaspora Studies Cluster at Brandeis University. She is currently pursuing a PhD in medical sociology at Bayero University in Kano, Nigeria. Her dissertation focuses on the causes and consequences of adolescent childbearing in northern Nigeria, a region with high rates of maternal and infant mortality. Hadiza has conducted extensive survey and ethnographic research on gender, health, education, violence, and political participation with national and international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in Nigeria. She collaborates with UNICEF’s Girls for Girls Initiative to promote girls’ education in rural northern Nigeria, and is also a facilitator for the British Council’s Active Citizens chapter at Bayero University. During her Fulbright Fellowship at Brandeis University (March to November 2021), Hadiza will be analyzing data from interviews conducted with adolescent mothers and their families, health workers, government health officials, and NGOs.