Rammy Salem
PhD Candidate, UC Santa Barbara
Rammy Salem is a PhD candidate studying social psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Rammy conducts research on topics related to intergroup relations, social norms, and belonging. He believes in the power of research to inform public policy decisions, and seeks to instrumentalize research to address societal issues. One such line of research relates to the ways in which minority groups are represented in demographic forms, such as the U.S. Census, and how those representations can influence minorities’ emotions and feelings of inclusion. Outside of research, Rammy mentors undergraduate students, serves on UCSB’s Graduate Student Association, and is part of the UC-wide coalition advocating for increasing compensation for graduate students. Prior to graduate school, Rammy worked with the New York City Housing Authority through the NYC Civic Corps, in which he partnered with residents to promote sustainability and undertake neighborhood beautification projects. He also volunteered with Ten Thousand Villages, which offers thousands of fair trade handmade goods made by international artisan groups in various countries who use environmentally friendly processes, sustainable natural resources, and recycled materials. Rammy completed a post-baccalaureate program in Psychology and Social Behavior at UC Irvine, and received his Bachelor’s degree in Government and Near Eastern Studies from Cornell University. He promoted progressive public policies during his internships with the Center for American Progress and the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. While receiving his undergraduate education, he strived to give back to others outside of the university bubble. He assisted in organizing and running a Youth Empowerment Conference for approximately 50 high school students, and helped organize educational enrichment programs for over 30 middle school students and parents from Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood to illuminate pathways to higher education. He has also traveled to Kenya to conduct nutrition education seminars and to South Africa to provide school-based support to orphans and vulnerable children living in HIV/AIDS-affected communities. Originally from Bayonne, NJ, Rammy enjoys playing and watching sports, including cheering for his nephew at his basketball games.