Regent Josiah Beharry

Josiah Beharry

Josiah Beharry is a distinguished scholar and the 2023-24 Student Regent-designate, exemplifying an unwavering commitment to academic excellence and societal progress. Currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Humanities at UC Merced, he delves into liberatory pedagogy, decolonizing curriculum, and trauma-rooted healing. With an outstanding Magna Cum Laude achievement, Josiah obtained his Bachelor degree in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, supplemented by a minor in Writing, further cementing his expertise in creative and research-based writing.

As the first representative from UC Merced to hold this prestigious position, Josiah's appointment as the Student Regent holds immense significance. Having immigrated from Trinidad during his childhood and being a first-generation student, he brings a unique perspective shaped by personal experiences. Driven by his journey, Josiah wholeheartedly supports students from underrepresented communities, serving as a compassionate peer leader and mentor, while fostering an unwavering sense of belonging.

Josiah enjoys contributing to the community; he was a mentor and aided in developing the Gateway Scholars program at UC Merced's Bright Student Success Center, equipping high school students in Merced with the tools necessary for college readiness. His advocacy extends to notable organizations such as the Central Valley Pride Center, where he served as a dedicated advocate, as well as esteemed institutions like the ACLU, UCLA Dream Summer, and APALA National. Josiah has actively engaged in projects and presentations shedding light on pressing topics, including immigrant communities and student agency, even exploring the intersection of stand-up comedy within these realms.

When Josiah isn't diligently working towards positive change, he finds joy in writing poetry, immersing himself in the rhythmic melodies of neo-soul and R&B. And in a delightful twist, he occasionally indulges in the guilty pleasure of benignly watching the Real Housewives, providing a momentary escape from the demands of academia. Even amidst his pursuit of transformative leadership, Josiah embraces humor and savors the simple pleasures that add delight to his journey.

Drawing upon his background in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, Josiah Beharry is particularly attuned to the pressing need for equity and representation for marginalized groups within the UC system. Recognizing the complexities and multifaceted nature of these issues, Josiah humbly acknowledges that he may not possess all the answers. However, his unwavering commitment lies in doing the necessary work to learn, grow, and advocate for the marginalized communities he represents. He welcomes the collaboration and collective effort required to effect meaningful change and looks forward to partnering with diverse stakeholders to forge a path toward a more inclusive future within the UC system.

Josiah understands that fostering an inclusive educational landscape requires proactive efforts to dismantle systemic barriers and amplify marginalized voices. He recognizes the urgency of addressing disparities in access, resources, and opportunities within the UC community. Through his transformative leadership, Josiah aims to initiate meaningful conversations, implement evidence-based policies, and advocate for initiatives that promote social justice and create a more equitable environment for all. With an acute awareness of the intersecting identities and experiences within marginalized communities, Josiah strives to ensure that their voices are not only heard but actively included in decision-making processes. He believes in the power of representation and seeks to uplift and empower individuals from underrepresented backgrounds, working tirelessly to bridge the gaps in access and advocate for meaningful change.





Term as Regent

Term as Student Regent-designate
July 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024

Term as Student Regent
July 1, 2024 - June 30, 2025

Committee Membership (2023-2024)

Academic and Student Affairs 
Compliance and Audit