Olivia Y. Hu

Olivia Y. Hu

2019 Cohort2022 Turner-Schulman Graduate Fellow

McNeil 331

Olivia Y. Hu is a doctoral student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. Her work focuses on race/ethnicity, assortative mating, and family formation. More specifically, Olivia's research agenda is motivated by two primary questions: (1) How do individuals come to select long-term committed partners, especially across racial and ethnic lines? (2) What happens to their understanding of racial/ethnic difference after they enter these cross-boundary unions?

Olivia's current research addresses these questions by examining the cultural and experiential factors that mediate Asian women's mating decisions. In a related study, she also explores how interracial/-ethnic relationships influence Asian women's racial politics.

Moreover, Olivia is spearheading two collaborative projects. With Alexander Adames, she explores the causal effect of educational attainment and educational prestige on mating outcomes. In collaboration with Dr. Wendy D. Roth and Dr. Xiang Lu, she examines how genetic ancestry test (GAT) takers conceptualize race. 

Prior to beginning her graduate studies, Olivia executed marketing campaigns at UBS and consulted on new product launches at Nielsen. She holds a B.S. in Sociology and Business Administration from New York University.


M.A., Sociology, University of Pennsylvania, 2021 

B.S., Sociology and Business Administration, New York University, 2015 (magna cum laude)

Research Interests
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Immigration
  • Interracial/Interethnic Relations
  • Assortative Mating
  • Family
  • Gender
  • Asian America
  • Racial Conceptualization
  • Research Methods
Courses Taught

Teaching Experience

Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Sociological Methods (Prof. Regina Baker), Spring 2022

Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Sociological Methods (Prof. Melissa Wilde), Fall 2021

Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Sociology (Prof. Jerry Jacobs), Fall 2020


Teaching Awards

The Penn Prize for Excellence in Teaching by Graduate Students, 2022


Teaching Certifications

Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) Teaching Certificate, 2022


2022 Turner-Schulman Graduate Fellow, Center for the Study of Ethnicity, Race, and Immigration

CV (file)