Laura Schneider is a long-term Maryland resident, having moved from Belize at the age of 3 months old, and residing there until relocating to begin her undergraduate career.  She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from Syracuse University in 2006 (Syracuse, NY) and continued on to earn a second bachelor of arts degree in sociology from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2009 (College Park, Maryland), where her concentration was in family and demography.  During her time in undergrad at UMD, she enjoyed research assisting in the Group Processes Lab studying stigma, status characteristics, and self-handicapping.

After earning her two bachelor's degrees, Laura spent time working in customer service, retail management, and administration in the veterinary medicine field.  In January of 2021, motivated by the multiple changes to American life and political atmosphere due to the Covid 19 pandemic, Laura returned to UMD as a non-degree seeking graduate student, with hopes to further pursue a graduate degree in sociology.  After re-developing her academic and research skills for 4 semesters, in January 2023, Laura was admitted and joined the sociology department as a full time PhD student.  Her specialty focus is social psychology, and she has special interests in interracial and transracial adoption, identity formation, race and ethnicity, gender work and family, sociology of sport, and medical sociology. 

Current research topics include multiracial church attendance and its relationship with moral beliefs, age at time of adoption and influence on psychological and social well-being in adulthood, and transracial adoption and the socialization of race within the family.  Laura is currently assisting on multiple research projects, including examining implicit biases in medicine, technology and pain management, as well as state level differences in health and healthcare quality among race/ethnicity and insurance differences. 

In her free time, Laura enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, attending the theatre and relaxing with a cup of coffee and a good book.

Areas of Interest

  • Social Psychology, Race/Ethnicity, Identity Formation, Medical Sociology, Gender Work and Family


  • BA
  • BA
DGSAC Representative
Parren J Mitchell Art - Sociology Bldg, Room 1111
Department of Sociology
lrschnei [at]
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