Skip to main content

Q: Where did you study as an undergraduate? What were your major(s)? 

I studied Languages, Literature, and Cultures at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Q: What do you like about UNC’s graduate program in Russian and East European Studies? 

I like the relaxed class environment that does not revolve around grades but rather learning. 

Q: Why did you choose to specialize in this region of the globe? 

I love Russian politics, music, and culture. I first discovered Russian in 2018 when I decided to search for new music options. I found Russian after seeing a meme on a Russian Instagram account and decided that I would try listening to some Russian artists such as rapper Oxxxymiron and popular singer, Polina Gagarina. Upon showing my new music to a Ukrainian friend, she told me that I should try to learn some Russian to understand what they were singing about. I started Russian on Duolingo, and within a year, I realized that I wanted to do something Russia-related, whatever that may be. Fast forward three years, and I still love the region, culture, and language of Russia. 

Q: What are your research interests? 

I would love to study the melding of Orthodox theology with Russian politics in greater detail. 

Q: What would you like to do after you graduate? 

I would love to continue my Russian language training and increase my knowledge of the region. I think that if anything, I would like to enter the political sphere in some shape or form. I think that my career will be shaped greatly through my degree. 

Q: What are your hobbies? What do you like doing in your free time? 

In my free time, I love hanging out with my wife, friends, and pets. We have a gecko breeding project, a crested gecko, two dogs, and an exotic praying mantis. I also love playing soccer and gaming on my PC with my friends. 

Q. What is your favorite visual reminder of the region and why?

I think that my favorite reminder of the region is not an image, but a video shot on a high-quality drone of Moscow’s best architecture.