Graduate Teaching Assistants and Fellows

Cat Alexander

Cat is a first-year PhD student and will be teaching SOC 202 Social Problems in the fall and spring. Cat graduated from Morehead State University with a B.A. in Sociology and a concentration in gender studies and just completed their MA in sociology from UofL this summer. They previously have researched topics related to the differences in experiences of toxic masculinity between cis- and trans-men. Their research interests currently include gender non-conformity and genderism as an institution that reifies the gender binary. When not working on schoolwork, Cat enjoys reading YA novels and volunteering at local libraries as well as partaking in messy but creative house projects. They also love to spend time with their two cats, Bumble Madonna and Meredith “The Void” Russo."

   |   (502) 852-8029   |   107 Lutz Hall  |  Watch video of Cat discussing their experience in the program

Solomon Amoatey

Solomon is a second-year PhD student and will serve as a research assistant in the fall semester for Dr. Melanie Gast.  Solomon holds a bachelor of arts degree in sociology from the University of Ghana and a master of arts degree in sociology from the University of Toledo, Ohio. His research explores the experiences of people with disabilities in the Global South. Solomon is deeply committed to defending the rights, freedoms and opportunities experienced by people with disabilities and by people in the Global South more broadly. He is also interested in health, social policy and social inequalities. His master’s thesis research involved the qualitative data collection and analysis of interviews with persons with disability in Ghana. 

Sasha Belinova

Sasha is a first-year MA-PhD student and will serve as a teaching assistant in the fall semester for Dr. Roberto Morales's SOC 201 Introduction to Sociology course.  She recently graduated with her B.A. in Sociology from Bellarmine University. During her time as an undergraduate student, she participated in local organizations such as the Coalition for the Homeless. These experiences would inform her current research focus in poverty and homelessness.

      |   (502) 852-3869   |   106 Lutz Hall 


Joseph Brewer

Joey is a first-year PhD student and will be teaching SOC 201 Introduction to Sociology in the fall and spring.  He earned his BA and MA in sociology from UofL and is interested in the sociology of leisure as it pertains to card games, board games, tabletop RPGS, and the Local Game Store environment, and is currently studying e-sports.

  |   (502) 852-8029   |   107 Lutz Hall

John Broadus

John Broadus is a second-year PhD student and will serving as a research assistant for Dr. Dave Roelfs in Fall, 2022. John graduated from Ashford University with a B.A in sociology and an M.S in justice studies with a concentration is public service leadership and social justice from Campbellsville University.  John’s research interests are black masculinity, intersectionality, race and ethnicity, blackness studies( Black existentialism), qualitative studies and research focused on social determinants of health of African-American males in urban settings. John particularly enjoys the work of Alford Young Jr, W.E.B Dubois, Joe Feagin, Stuart Hall, Frantz Fanon, Lewis Gordon & Belle Hooks. John enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons. John also enjoys reading any text focused on race, racism, or existentialism.

      |   (502) 852-8045  |   115 Lutz Hall 


Jon Ellis

Jon is a first-year MA-PhD. student who will serve as a teaching assistant for Dr. Roberto Morales's Soc 201 in the fall. Jon graduated from the University of North Florida with a B.A. in Sociology, a Minor in Psychology, and a concentration in Social Welfare Policy. His research during undergrad comprised of biracial identity and social program evaluation. However, his research interests entering graduate school include youth homelessness, origins of stratification, Deviance and social control, and social policy.

   |   (502) 852-8045   | 106 Lutz Hall

Freddie Hatton

Freddie is a second-year MA-PhD student whose research interests include gender, sexuality, and popular culture.  They are currently looking into how social media has created a space for people to express non-binary gender identities.  Their hobbies include watching anime, reading fantasy novels, and listening to the British rock band Queen.  They live with their best friend and closest companion: a two year old Cockapoo named Oscar.

   |   (502) 852-8026   |   108 Lutz Hall

Rebecca Halpryn

Becca is a third-year PhD student and will serve as a research assistant for Dr. Lauren Heberle in the fall, working with the Center for Environmental Policy and Management. She holds a bachelor of the arts in sociology and environmental sustainability from Berea College. Her research interests include quantitative methods, demography, and sustainability. Her quantitative research experience includes 2 years of working as a research assistant at Berea College’s Office of Institutional Research and Assessment. She is the 2019 – 2020 Vice President of both the Sociology Graduate Student Association (SGSA) and the Graduate Network of Arts and Sciences (GNAS).

   |   (502) 852-8046   |   116 Lutz Hall

Samuel Hunter

Sam is a fourth-year PhD student.  He holds a master of arts in social sciences from the University of Troy University, with a focus on sociology and psychology. He also holds a bachelor of science in political science from Troy University. Samuel was previously an adjunct instructor for Troy University for two years. In his spare time he likes to do woodwork projects, play card/board games, cook, and explore the streets of the city or go hiking in the woods.

   |   (502) 852-8045   |   115 Lutz Hall

James Joyce

James is a first-year PhD student and will serve as a teaching assistant in the fall semester for Dr. Roberto Morales's SOC 201 Introduction to Sociology course.  James has a BS and MA in sociology, as a graduate student, is interested in studying mixed methods in the sociology of health and safety, American sociology, social movement organizations, socialization, politicization and framing of social action. James is particularly interested in these areas with respect to anti-racism and governmental responsibility (currently regarding COVID-19 regulations, previously studying pollution regulations, and other ecological protections). James enjoys consulting for sustainable initiatives, participates in music and movement subcultures, and reads fiction and non-fiction.

      |   (502) 852-8044   |   113 Lutz Hall   |  Watch video of James discussing their experience in the program

Autumn Martin

Autumn is a first-year PhD student and will serve as a teaching assistant in the fall semester for Dr. Roberto Morales's SOC 201 Introduction to Sociology course. She received her M.A. in Sociology and B.S. in Psychology from Middle Tennessee State University. Her thesis looked at the effects that COVID-19 had on working mothers in the nursing profession. She has interests in sexuality, gender, medical sociology, and sports.  When she has free time she enjoys training in martial arts.

     |   (502) 852-8044   |   113 Lutz Hall 

Haley Metcalf-Wade

Haley is a fourth-year PhD student and will serve as a research assistant for Dr. Lauren Heberle in the fall, working with the Center for Environmental Policy and Management. Haley graduated in 2019 with her master’s degree in applied sociology from East Tennessee State University and graduated in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in social epidemiology from the University of Tennessee. Haley’s research is focused on environmental and health justice.  In her spare time, she likes to spend time with her cats, Bo and Dash, and her dog, Tina.

   |   (502) 852-8046   |   116 Lutz Hall

Rachel Toll

Rachel is a first-year MA-PhD student with interests in intersectionality and social inequality. She graduated magna cum laude with honors from Bellarmine University where she majored in Sociology with minors in Anthropology and Psychology. Rachel's undergraduate thesis looked at the factors that influence the racial disproportion in Division I men's college basketball. Outside of academia, Rachel enjoys reading, volunteering at her church, and spending time with Nova, her 2 year old rescue dog.

      |   (502) 852-8026   |   108 Lutz Hall