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Indira S. Somani

Indira S. Somani, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Journalism at the School of Communications, Howard University in Washington, DC where she teaches broadcast journalism courses. She studies effects of satellite television on the Indian diaspora, specifically the generation of the Asian Indians who migrated to the U.S. between 1960 and 1972, and their media habits. She has been published in the Journal of International and Intercultural Communication, and the Asian Journal of Communication. For the fall of 2011, Somani was awarded a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Fellowship to study the "Western influence of Indian programming in India." She brings 10 years of broadcast journalism experience as a television news producer to the classroom, most notably from CNBC and WJLA-TV, the ABC affiliate in Washington, D.C. Somani is also an award winning independent producer and director of documentaries about how Asian Indians maintain and preserve their cultural identity. She produces documentary films, such as Crossing Lines, a personal essay documentary about her struggle to stay connected to India after the loss of her father. The film has won numerous awards, screened in film festivals nationally and internationally, screened on PBS affiliates, and has also been distributed to more than 100 university libraries in the U.S. through New Day films. She has been a leader of the South Asian Journalists Association (SAJA), where she has also won "Outstanding" awards on her coverage of South Asians in North America." Prior to joining Howard University, Somani was an Assistant Professor of Journalism at Washington and Lee University (Lexington, VA) and American University's School of Communication (Washington, DC). Somani earned her Master's in Journalism from the Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University in 1993, and her Ph.D. from the Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland, College Park in May 2008.

Contact: isomani [at] aol [dot] com