Lab Director

Jennifer A. Richeson, PhD

Jennifer A. Richeson is the Philip R. Allen Professor of Psychology at Yale University and Director of the Social Perception and Communication Lab. She received a Bachelor of Science in psychology from Brown University, and both an MA and PhD in social psychology from Harvard University. Prior to joining the Yale faculty in 2016, she was the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Professor of Psychology at Northwestern University, where she was also a Faculty Fellow at the Institute for Policy Research. Through her research & teaching, Professor Richeson Seeks to identify ways to create cohesive  environments that are also culturally diverse. When not in the lab, Professor Richeson likes to run around with her dog, Achilles, play word and card games, and comment on politics and current events.
[cv bio]

Post-Doctoral Associate

Sa-Kiera Hudson, PhD

Dr. Hudson is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the SPCL. She earned her PhD in Social Psychology at Harvard University, working with Jim Sidanius, Mahzarin Banaji, and Mina Cikara. After earning a BA In biology & Psychology from williams college, Dr. Hudson spent two transformative years as a lab manager for Jenessa Shapiro in the Social Interaction and Social Stigma Lab at UCLA. Dr. Hudson is interested in two broad questions: What are the psychological and biological roots of power hierarchies and how do these hierarchies intersect to influence experiences and perceptions?
[CV email website]

Graduate Students

Natalie M. Daumeyer

Natalie is a Fourth year Doctoral candidate at Yale. She graduated in 2014 from Miami University with a B.A. in Psychology and a B.A. in Individualized Studies with a focus in Social Justice Issues: Power and Privilege in Society. Natalie’s research interests broadly fall under the umbrella of stereotyping, prejudice, and intergroup relations. she is interested in how people make sense of discrimination and inequality. Specifically, Her dissertation explores the consequences of attributing discrimination to implicit, compared to explicit, bias. When not in the lab, you can either find Natalie at the gym, watching Netflix, or cooking. 
[cv email WEBSITE

Julian M. Rucker

Julian is a Fourth year doctoral Candidate at Yale. He is primarily interested in the relationship between lay perceptions of discrimination and subsequent support for efforts to address social inequality. Before coming to Yale, Julian earned a B.A. in Psychology at The University of Texas at Austin and received a M.A. in Psychology from Northwestern University. He served as a lab manager for the Mind & Identity in Context Lab at Indiana University before joining the SPCL. In his free time, he likes playing guitar and binging on documentaries and college football. 
[cv email

Xanni Brown

Xanni is a THird year doctoral student in the social psychology program. She graduated in 2014 with a B.A. in Social Studies from Harvard University, where she also worked in the Sidanius Intergroup Psychology Lab. Xanni’s research interests include intergroup relations, inequality, empathy, and political psychology. Her non-research interests include campaign finance reform, bicycle touring, and rugby.
[CV email


Ajua Duker

Ajua is a Third year doctoral student in the SPCL. Her interests include intergroup relations broadly, but she plans to examine cognitive, physiological, and behavioral responses of marginalized group members. She received her B.S. from Yale in 2015, and was the lab manager for the Socio-Cognitive Processes Lab under Professor Alin Coman at Princeton University for two years. She is also interested in moral psychology, social networks, and norms. In her free time, she enjoys ballet and contemporary dance, music, going to art museums, and taking long walks.
[CV email

Estée Rubien-Thomas

estée is a Fourth year ph.d. candidate in the neuroscience area of the psychology graduate program, working primarily with dr. bj casey.  she graduated from wesleyan university in 2013 with a major in neuroscience and behavior, after which she worked and learned neuroimaging techniques in the dystonia and motor control lab at the mount sinai medical center in new york city.  estée is interested in bridging social psychology and neuroscience to explore the neural circuitry underlying cognition and behavior during interracial encounters.  when not in lab, estée enjoys baking elaborate desserts and spending as much time as she can with the various dogs in her life! 
[cv email]

Natalie Wittlin

Natalie is a fifth year doctoral candidate at Yale. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from Barnard College in 2009, and prior to graduate school, she worked in the fields of public health and education. Natalie’s research explores beliefs about gender and sexual orientation, as well as how those beliefs relate to physical and mental health outcomes. She is particularly interested in appearance-related stereotypes of transgender and cisgender women and men. When not conducting research, Natalie enjoys doing crossword puzzles, crafting, and listening to NPR.
[CV email]



Research Assistants

Sneha Mittal

Sneha is a senior in Pierson College and has served as a research assistant in SPCL since summer 2018. On campus, she has been involved in the South Asian Society, Yale Rangeela (a Bollywood fusion dance group), and Yale Emergency Medical Services. In her free time, Sneha likes listening to new music and spending time with her friends.

Angela Yoo

Angela is a junior in Davenport College majoring in Cognitive Science. She has served as a research assistant in the Social Perception and Communication Lab since Fall 2019. Outside of the lab, she is a Good Life Center Intern and a Peer Wellness Champion, and is involved with Design for America at Yale. In her free time, Angela enjoys journaling, lingering in cozy coffee shops, and spending time with friends.

Sam Brakarsh

Sam is a junior from Zimbabwe majoring in social psychology and completing the special program in global health. He has served as a Research Assistant in the Social Perception and Communication Lab since fall 2019. Broadly, Sam is interested in education and health systems as well as the role of art in collective resistance. In his free time, he enjoys writing, music, dear friends, and bad puns.

EC Mingo

Ec is a Second-year in Ezra Stiles College. EC has served as a research assistant in the Social Perception and Communication Lab since SPring 2019. In EC’s free time, Evan enjoys playing video games, reading opinion articles, watching movies, and late night conversations with his friends.

Joyce Wu

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Joyce Wu is a Second-year in Branford College. It is her first semester serving as a research assistant in the Social Perception and Communication Lab as of Spring 2019. In her free time, she enjoys going on runs, grabbing coffee with friends, and reading. On campus, she is involved in various Asian American groups, including Negative Space and the Chinese American Student Association [CASA].




Former Postdoctoral Fellows

Ivuoma Onyeador, PhD (UCLA), SPCL Postdoc (2017-2020), Assistant Profesor, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University

Michelle Rheinschmidt-Same, PhD (UC Berkeley), SPCL Postdoc (2014-2016)

Shanette Porter, PhD 2010 (Cornell), SPCL Posdoc (2010-2012), Senior Research Analyst, University of Chicago Consortium on School Research

Evan Apfelbaum, PhD 2009 (Tufts) SPCL Postdoc (2009-2011), Associate Professor, Boston University

Mary Murphy, PhD 2007 (Stanford) SPCL Postdoc (2007-2009), Professor, Indiana University, Bloomington

Former PhD Advisees

Dorainne J. Levy, PhD 2016; Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Indiana University

Maureen A. Craig, PhD 2014; Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, New York University

Katie Rotella, PhD 2013; Johnson & Johnson, Inc.

Destiny Peery, JD/PhD 2012; Associate Professor, Northwestern Law School

Meghan Bean, PhD 2011

Sarah Johnson, PhD 2009

Sophie Trawalter, PhD 2006; Associate Professor, The Batton School of Public Policy, University of Virginia