Celia Lacayo

Celia Lacayo

Celia Lacayo

Adjunct Professor
Adjunct Faculty

Office: 1317 Rolfe Hall

Email: clacayo@ss.ucla.edu


Celia Lacayo is the Associate Director of Community Engagement for the Division of Social Sciences. She received her PhD in Ethnic Studies from the University of California Berkeley. Her research interests include Race & Ethnicity, Immigration, political behavior, and Media. She finished a postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA with the Institute of American Cultures in the Sociology Department and is now Associate Director of Community Engagement for the College of Letters and Science. She also teaches in the Chicana/o & Central American Studies and African American Studies Department. Her main research examines white attitudes towards Latinos and their policy preferences, as well as the role of media stereotypes to understand contemporary race relations and stratification. Her article “Perpetual Inferiority: Whites’ Racial Ideology toward Latinos,” in the Sociology of Race & Ethnicity journal interrogates how external racial ascription affects the racial group formation process for Latinos. It won the Distinguished Contribution to Research Article award by the American Sociological Association Latino/s Section. Moreover, her article “Latinos Need to Stay in Their Place: Differential Segregation in a Multi-Ethnic Suburb” also has garnered attention. This article which contributed to the literature on Latino segregation was featured in The Guardian, OC Weekly, CityLab Latino, and Immigration Prof Blog. Celia is constantly sought by Spanish and English media to discuss her expertise. Her other work includes comparative racial discourses between US and Europe used to explain Trump and Brexit. Her next research projects include examining the Afro-Latinx Experience and relations between African Americans and Latinos as well as Latinx racial socialization and political behavior.


  • BA Political Science UCLA
  • MA Latin American Studies UCLA
  • PhD Ethnic Studies UC Berkeley 


Race, Immigration, Latinos, Citizenship, Media, and Black and Brown Relations

Selected Publications

  • Lacayo, Celia Olivia. “Perpetual inferiority: Whites’ racial ideology toward Latinos.” Sociology of Race and Ethnicity 3.4 (2017): 566-579.
  • Lacayo, Celia. “Latinos need to stay in their place: differential segregation in a multi-ethnic suburb.” Societies 6.3 (2016): 25.


  • CS 10B, 70, 100, 149, 188
  • AA M5, 191,291, 184