Faculty & Staff Spotlight Ashwin

Meet Aswhin Rajadesingan

What do you currently do at UT?
- “Assistant Professor. I teach and research on social media and politics.

When did you decide you wanted to work in Communication?
- “It was in the second year of my PhD in Information. I made friends with students from the communication department which was housed right above mine. Turned out, we actually studied similar things and I was hooked!

What was your Master's Thesis/PhD dissertation about?
- “My master's thesis was on detecting sarcasm on social media, and yeah, that went well.... My dissertation was on approaches to facilitate quality online political interactions.”

What is your favorite Austin restaurant or eating place?
- “Still figuring out the best places. But I really like Madam Mam's and Sangam.”

If you were stranded on an island, what three things would you bring?
- “Binoculars, grill and books

What movie genre is your favorite? 
- “I could watch whodunnit movies all day.”

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
- “Teleporting without jetlag would be nice…”

If you could go back in time, what’s one piece of advice you would give to yourself?
- “Relax... you'll be fine!”

Where would you love to travel to next?
- “Southeast Asia. I feel like there's so much to do there!”

What are you proudest of?
- “In grad school, my friends and I were able to raise over $20,000 for Safai Karmachari Andolan (https://www.safaikarmachariandolan.org/), an organization in India that works to eradicate manual scavenging.”

What is a fun fact about you that most people here don’t know?
- “I am an avid birder, but a terrible photographer.”


Ashwin Bird