I am a predoctoral associate of research at Duke University and a PhD candidate specializing in race and ethnic politics at the University of Maryland, College Park. My research centers on understanding how Black individuals navigate racism within the context of their intersecting personal identities, such as gender, socioeconomic background, and cultural affiliations.

My dissertation, titled "Red, White, and Black: Black Racial Grievance and Black American Identity," delves into the intricate relationship between individuals' psychological responses to racism and the subsequent influence on their behaviors, attitudes, and overall Black American identity. Through this exploration, I aim to contribute valuable insights into the complexities of being both Black and American.

In collaboration with Janelle Wong, our published work in Advances in Political Psychology addresses the influence of race on political attitudes within the religiously unaffiliated group. Through our research, we illuminate the underlying factors contributing to the rise of nonreligious individuals in the U.S. Furthermore, our study delves into the complex landscape of racial disparities in stances on crucial issues like same-sex marriage, immigration, and taxes, uncovering insights that have far-reaching implications for understanding contemporary political dynamics.

My research has garnered strong support through several prestigious grants and awards. In recognition of the potential impact of my work, I received a $2,500 grant from the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences during the summer of 2019. The significance of my research was further underscored in 2020 with a $10,000 grant from the University of Maryland, College Park, in collaboration with my co-advisor, Lilliana Mason. Additionally, I was honored to be awarded the Baumann Fellowship for the years 2021-2023, where I contribute as a research assistant under the guidance of my co-advisor, Chryl Laird. This fellowship was accompanied by a $10,000 grant from the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, reinforcing the importance of my research contributions. Finally, Duke University provided me with $4,000 in predoctoral research funding.


Areas of Interest

  • Race and Ethnic Politics
  • Political Behavior
  • Political Psychology


  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    Communication (Political Communication), Wake Forest University, 2017
  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    Communication, Florida Atlantic University, 2015

Research Topics

  • American Politics
  • Methodology
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Tydings 1115E
Government and Politics Department
stsumej [at] umd.edu
Office Hours
By appointment