Where did you grow up?
What drew you to your field?
I have always been fascinated by how far reaching and influential the processes of globalization are in everyday life—from my parents’ move to Singapore from India; to the food, music, clothing, and information I grew up consuming; to my own movement. It is amazing how small yet expansive the globe really is.
How would you explain your current research to someone outside of your field?
My research explores how and why people move transnationally, and how that in turn affects everything from lifestyles to the rise of economies.
What is your favorite thing about being a student at Columbia GSAS?
The people and the discussions. It is so exciting to leave classes feeling utterly mind-blown.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Probably moving to Tokyo at 19. I had not been there before, did not know anyone there, and did not speak the language.
Who are your favorite writers?
Pico Iyer, Evan Osnos, and Michael Ondaatje.
Who is your hero of fiction?
Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series. She is brave, well read, and stands up for herself.
Who are your heroes in real life?
All the women in my life.
Who in your field do you consider to be a role model?
Carol Gluck. She is so knowledgeable (about everything!) and is so much fun.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
Pepper, the humanoid robot. It would be such a great anthropological study.
What music have you been listening to lately?
George Ezra, Miguel, and Tennis.
What is your favorite blog or website?
Where is your favorite place to eat on/around campus?