In addition to my faculty position at JMU, I received a Marie S. Curie Action (MSCA) Individual Fellowship from the European Commission Horizon 2020 program to conduct independent mobility research with the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at Ludwig Maximilian University Munich (LMU). I will take a leave of absence from JMU in my second year to pursue this unique opportunity as part of the ERC research group Remoteness and Connectivity: Highland Asia and the World (http://highlandasia.net/index.html). My MSCA research project at LMU Munich, Road Diplomacy: China in South Asia, builds directly upon and expands my dissertation studies at CU Boulder and aims to generate new knowledge about where, why, and to what extent roads are being built between China and South Asia and to untangle the interrelated geopolitical and social impacts of infrastructure development at village, national, and international scales.
My new professional positions are academic extensions of graduate training at CU Geography and I intend to maintain connections with CU Boulder in the future. No matter the locations or institutions, my applied scholarship will continue to draw on the theoretical rigor, global perspectives, and classroom orientations gained through critical training in Geography at CU Boulder. In fact, during my hiring interview at JMU, the dean mentioned the prestigious, world-renowned stature of the CU Geography faculty. I believe this gave me a clear advantage during the hiring process. I feel incredibly fortunate to have a tenure track position at this stage of my career and am grateful to all of the CU Geography faculty and staff for the exceptional support along the way. And now I truly understand the old joke that one of the hardest parts of the CU Geography program is leaving Boulder when you’re done!