Heylo! You might wonder why an “extended bio” is necessary aside from a “regular bio.” Sometimes I wonder that too, and feel it’s a bit much. But it’s sometimes helpful because I’ve admittedly had a bit of an untraditional career path. If you’re curious to make more sense of my work, read on.
In 2016, I was selected by the International Women’s Media Foundation as an African Great Lakes Reporting Fellow to Uganda, where I reported on media and politics ahead of Uganda’s 2016 elections and completed a hostile environment training course.
My desire to report from Uganda stemmed from an itch to want to grow professionally and understand a different region of the world. I had previously been freelancing from Lucknow, India, from 2013 to 2015. I had moved to Lucknow after graduating from journalism school, when I received a scholarship to study Urdu there. I then stayed beyond my language program to freelance on the dynamics of a changing India from the perspective of the tier-two city and surrounding regions. My work includes extensive reporting on the country’s 2014 election, research into the freelance economy for international news, and an ongoing project on women and the justice system.
Why Lucknow? It’s more of an emerging metropolitan hub in India, and not really on the international map. While in graduate school, I helped initiate the New Global Journalism, a project investigating foreign correspondence in transition (it later served as the foundation for the Tow Center report on the topic). Lucknow happened to be where my language program was based. But on a deeper level, I wanted to report from an area that stood to have much more nuanced and original reporting, especially given its political and social sensitivity in India. I wanted to see whether it might be possible to translate those so-called “local” stories for an international audience, despite Lucknow not being very well-known globally.
Now, I find myself doing that for stories regardless where they’re based!