Shaneequa Castle

Shaneequa Castle
Upper Marlboro, MD

The society we live in is complex to say the least. As an Afro-Caribbean young woman living in the United States my life is also complex to say the least. Growing up with the contrast between being born in America and raised in a Jamaican family has led me to question and analyze society as early as elementary school. In my undergrad years here at St. Lawrence, the sociology department as allowed me to seek answers to those questions by critically analyzing the world we live in. Race, gender, immigration, socialization, conformity, institutions; I have had the privilege of studying these issues and more. This department has allowed me to grow from being an inquisitive student to a young scholar contributing to global knowledge. Using sociological methods including qualitative fieldwork, I have conducted research on racial tension while studying abroad in Trinidad and Tobago. Additionally, my research has considered social resistance and identity expression through an independent project on Jamaican dancehall culture which I was able to study thanks to the Tanner Fellowship, McNair Scholars Program, and the support of my mentors and faculty. My interests in societal and global issues has also led me to establish H.O.P.E., a non-profit run organization which uses talent and creativity to raise money for people facing various struggles across the world. In the near future I plan to pursue my passion for research by attending graduate school. I also plan on continuing to take what I learn from my research to help as many people that I can through H.O.P.E. Not only has the sociology department enabled me to explore my areas of interest, but it has also opened new doors for me to feed my craving for more knowledge.