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Kira H. Banks, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Clinical Program
Department of Psychology


Ph.D., University of Michigan

Research Interests

Banks’ research program has two trajectories: 1) examining the experience of African Americans with discrimination, and mental health, and 2) diversity in higher education and intergroup relations. Related to the former, she explores the experience of discrimination and racial identity (how individuals integrate race into their understanding of who they are). The latter, which focuses on intergroup relations, is intricately linked with the first trajectory. In her earlier work on the experience of discrimination, she consistently offered as an implication the need for creating more hospitable environments. For example, on college campuses, it is essential that we not only support students of color but also educate White students about what it means to engage in a diverse environment. Therefore, Banks’ work attempts to minimize the deleterious affects of discrimination while simultaneously intervening to foster increased and improved intergroup interactions.

Labs and Facilities

Professor Banks will be accepting students into her lab for Fall 2023.


Community Work and Service

Dr. Banks served as a racial equity consultant for the Ferguson Commission and has continued as the Racial Equity Catalyst for Forward Through Ferguson. Banks has also consulted with schools, communities, institutions of higher education and corporations to improve diversity and inclusion efforts and engage people in productive dialogue and action.