UMass Boston

Karen Suyemoto

Wheatley Hall Floor 04

Areas of Expertise

Clinical psychology, Asian American studies, mental health and identity in Asian Americans, Empowerment and resisting racism, Community and educational initiatives for social justice


PhD, University of Massachusetts

Professional Publications & Contributions

Additional Information

Karen Suyemoto has a joint appointment with the Psychology Department and Asian American Studies Program and Critical Ethnic and Community Studies graduate program.Their research interests focus generally on Asian American psychology and issues related to social justice and anti-racist therapy/ practice/education. Their research addresses fostering awareness and advocacy for social justice through: examining relations of race and racism to mental health; investigating effects of resistance and coping with racism; and exploring the complexity of relative and ascribed power and intersectional discrimination. Additional research addresses how cultural responsiveness and racial social justice can be developed through and integrated into education, training, research methods, and practice. Their current research projects include a quantitative study examining the effects of racism for people of color and how taking action to challenge racism may moderate negative psychological effects and a two-book project focused on transformative teaming and learning about oppression and privilege (with Grace Kim and Roxanne Donovan).   Professor Suyemoto was the Chair of the recently released Guidelines for Race and Ethnicity for the American Psychological Association. They served as the past president of the Asian American Psychological Association and as the AAPA delegate to the American Psychological Association Council of Representatives. In 2013, they was recognized as a White House Champion of Change: Asian American Pacific Islander Woman Leader and  also awarded the Asian American Psychological Association’s Distinguished Contributions Award.


Undergraduate: Asian American Psychology; Introduction to Asian American Studies; Multiracial Experiences; Race, Culture, and Relationships, Multicultural Counseling, Asian American Community Internships. 

Graduate: Culture and Mental Health; Social Construction of Self and Identities; Qualitative Methods