An Interview with a Broadway Star

by Dr. Punita Rice Culture

Vishal Vaidya Broadway ISAASE

For the ISAASE Be Inspired project, I interviewed Vishal Vaidya, who you might know from his recent run as Larry the Cameraman on Broadway’s Groundhog Day (or from #Rifftober). I’ve also known Vishal for over 20 years (we even performed a duet version of Christina Aguilera’s I Turn To You in our middle school talent show together, and acted in plays … Read More

First Time I Saw Me… Hasn’t Happened Yet

by Dr. Punita Rice Culture, Life

Mindy Lahiri - #FirstTimeISawMe Indian American Woman - The First Time I Saw Me Hasn't Happened Yet

Did you see the “First Time I Saw Me” campaign on Twitter a few months ago? Black Girl Nerds and Netflix collaborated earlier this year and started a campaign centered around diversity and representation in the media, and pushed the use of the hashtag #FirstTimeISawMe to collect stories from people sharing the first time they saw themselves. (Two of the … Read More

Kevin Negandhi Interview

by Dr. Punita Rice Culture

Earlier this year, for the ISAASE Be Inspired project, I had a conversation with ESPN’s Kevin Negandhi. If you’re interested, you can read the full interview now over at ISAASE.org/inspired, or ISAASE.org/kevin-negandhi. P.S. – More about ISAASE’s Be Inspired project, and a chat with Natasha Sumant of Gundi Studios.

A Chat with Poet Pavana Reddy

by Dr. Punita Rice Culture

Pavana Reddy mazadohta

Pavana Reddy (who you may already be following on Instagram — she’s also known as @mazadohta!), is an amazing, beautiful, inspiring poet. You can sample her lovely poetry on her Instagram page (here), hear it on Anoushka Shankar’s album Land of Gold, or read it in her first book, Rangoli. I got to connect with and interview Pavana for ISAASE’s Be Inspired project. We had a … Read More

A Chat with Lady Pista

by Dr. Punita Rice Culture

Inspired by Lady Pista - Recording Artist and DJ - Full Interview with Punlearning

Have you heard of Lady Pista? Sumangala Narendrakumar (aka Lady Pista) is a recording artist and DJ whose music is a blend of dancehall, electro-house, and world music. A couple months ago, I reached out to Lady Pista to connect about the ISAASE Be Inspired project, which aims to inspire young South Asian Americans by sharing diverse profiles and stories … Read More

Links for your Weekend

by Dr. Punita Rice Miscellaneous

Links for your Weekend

It’s my birthday weekend! Every year, the week before my birthday is designated as Hindi Movie Week in my house. But with a toddler, Hindi Movie Week has been way less successful than in years past. So far, I’ve made it through Neerja, and a re-watch of about fifteen minutes of Jab We Met (but didn’t catch this amazing song … Read More

A Chat with Natasha Sumant of Gundi Studios

by Dr. Punita Rice Culture

Natasha Sumant of Gundi Studios

Have you seen the instagram account Gundi Studios? In Hindi, “gundi” means female thug — and since outspoken South Asian women aren’t typically appreciated in South Asian communities, Natasha Sumant (the artist behind Gundi Studios) started the project as a way to celebrate courageous women, and reclaim the term gundi. The art and fashion coming out of Gundi Studios is fantastic, but … Read More

You’re Going to Regret Not Trying

by Dr. Punita Rice Life

Jashvina Shah - Journalist - Fashion and Sports

Earlier this year I mentioned my outreach organization ISAASE‘s “Be Inspired” project. (In case you missed the post, it’s here). For the project, I connected with journalist Jashvina Shah about navigating the world of sports journalism (which isn’t exactly known for its welcoming attitude towards women), establishing a subscription service to a private sports reporting site, and why she loves working in journalism. She … Read More

A Chat with Shaun Jayachandran

by Dr. Punita Rice Teaching

Crossover Basketball and Scholars Academy - Interview with Shaun Jayachandran

If you’re familiar with my outreach organization ISAASE (pronounced “iss-ah-say”), have you seen the “Be Inspired” project yet? The project is all about inspiring the next generation of young South Asian American students, by sharing profiles on diverse role models and diverse stories of success. For our first interview for the project, I connected with Shaun Jayachandran. Shaun Jayachandran is a … Read More