Rashawn Ray

Assistant Professor

Rashawn Ray is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and an Associate Research Director at the Consortium on Race, Gender, and Ethnicity at the University of Maryland, College Park. He received a Ph.D. in Sociology from Indiana University in 2010. From 2010-2012 he was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Research Scholar at the University of California, Berkeley/UCSF. Ray’s research addresses the mechanisms that manufacture and maintain racial and social inequality. His work also speaks to ways that inequality may be attenuated through racial uplift activism and social policy. Ray is the editor of Race and Ethnic Relations in the 21st Century: History, Theory, Institutions, and Policy. His work has appeared in Ethnic and Racial Studies, American Behavioral Scientist, Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, Journal of Higher Education, and Journal of African American Studies. Ray has been awarded funding from the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, American Sociological Association Minority Fellowship Program, Society for the Study of Social Problems, and the Ford Foundation. Currently, Ray is working on a series of projects centered on the intersections of race, class, and gender. The first project examines racial differences in barriers and incentives to physical activity among the middle class. The second project investigates how perceived body size shapes race and class differences in the mental, physical, and sexual health of girls and young women. With Dr. Kris Marsh, another project explores how the stigma of aging single influences psychological distress and physical activity among middle class Black women. Third, with Drs. Dana Fisher and Liana Sayer, Ray is exploring the impact school gardens have on academic achievement, nutritional knowledge, and civic engagement among children in ninety elementary schools in Washington DC. Finally, with scholars in the humanities, Ray is exploring the evolution of the #BlackLivesMatter movement as a social and collective identity. Ray has received mentorship awards from the Department of Sociology, Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program, and the Philip Merrill Presidential Scholar Program at the University of Maryland. In 2014, Ray was selected as Forty Under 40 Prince George’s County and in 2010 he was recognized as the Outstanding Black Male Leader of Tomorrow for the city of Bloomington, IN. Currently, Ray is a member of the National Committee on Nominations for the American Sociological Association and the Co-Chair of the Ford Foundation Scholars Conference. He serves of the editorial boards for Sociology of Race and Ethnicity and Social Psychology Quarterly.
  • PhD Indiana University, 2010
  • MA Indiana University, 2005
  • BA University of Memphis, 2003
Course Name Course Title Semester Syllabus
  • Rashawn Ray
4125 Art/Sociology Building
Department of Sociology
Phone: (301) 405-9581
Email: rjray@umd.edu