Lakshman Kalasapudi: South Asian Studies / Urban Planning

Lakshman Kalasapudi

South Asian Studies / Urban Planning

B.A. June 2012, Magna cum Laude

Home College:  Hunter / Macaulay Honors College

Faculty Mentors:  Profs. Laxmi Ramasubramanian, Urban Affairs, and Ruchi Chaturvedi, Anthropology, Hunter

Kenan Leadership Scholar
Lisa Goldberg/Revson Scholar
Dean’s List

From Manitoba, Canada, Lakshman writes:

“As a graduate of the CUNY Baccaulaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies, I can confidently say that this course of study and the independence and freedom that CUNY BA allowed me were instrumental to where I am today and where I hope to be in the future. My areas of concentrations were South Asian Studies and Urban Planning, but I took classes is over fifteen different departments during my college experience. I was able study abroad in India twice, take courses about South Asia from over seven different departments, and study South Asia from six different college campuses around the city and the world. The flexible nature of CUNY BA allowed me to finish my concentrations and core requirements quickly and move on to concentrating on other subjects. In addition to South Asian Studies and Urban Planning, I have taken many classes on food studies and Geographic Information Science (GIS).

In my senior year, I was selected for a funded Master’s degree on the topic of small millet production in South Asia. With my own interdisciplinary background, I felt as though I was the perfect fit for this research project, which is an interdisciplinary endeavor as well.  Although I am a part of a discipline of Anthropology now, at the University of Manitoba, I continue to engage everything that I learned in college in my coursework to bring about a richer understanding of what I am learning and to critically engage the issues at hand. In fact, just the other day, I introduced a basic model of urban planning in my Environmental Anthropology class. I will continue to think about how I can bridge together GIS and ethnographic research and other disciplines for my thesis. These are the kinds of connections that a CUNY BA education has helped me create, legitimize, and pursue. CUNY BA makes interdisciplinarity, a raging trend in the upper echelons of academia, easily accessible to undergraduates. This is a framework of intellectual inquiry that I will carry on in my future work.”