Benny completed his graduate studies at Cal Poly Humboldt’s Psychology department in May 2023, working under Dr. Amber Gaffney to earn his Master's degree in Academic Research with a focus in Social Psychology. He was the 2023 recipient of the Patricia O. McConkey Outstanding Graduate Student award.
Benny’s research interests on a basic, theoretical level are strongly tied to self-categorization theory and the motivations that underlie group identification. He is specifically interested in how concepts such as prototypicality and entitativity can be demonstrated mathematically, as well as how and why epistemic and enhancement motives explain reactions to deviant group membership. On a more applied level, Benny is interested in community relationships with law enforcement, which is related to his thesis, “Positive and Negative Contact as Predictors of Attitudes toward Law Enforcement.” His role in the Social Identity Lab is to mentor graduate and undergraduate members and manage and create theoretically grounded research.
Benny will be teaching Psychology of Prejudice and an Introduction to Psychological Statistics Lab as a Lecturer in the Cal Poly Humboldt Psychology department in Fall 2023.
Summer 2023 CV Link