Dr. Indu Viswanathan

Dr. Indu Viswanathan

Director of Education

Dr. Indu Viswanathan holds a doctorate in education from Teachers College, Columbia University. She received a BA in Economics from Cornell University and an MA in Elementary Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. She has been a student of His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar for over fifteen years. 

Indu started her career as the Research Assistant to the Chief US Economist at Citigroup. She decided to become a teacher to align her work with her dharma. She has spent twenty years in the field of education, with global experience in program design, teaching, and teacher education, serving American public schools, Ecole Française Internationale de Bombay, and educational NGOs Teach for India, Akanksha, and Nouvelle Vie Haiti. She served as the Director of Research for YES! For Schools (now SKY Schools), a nonprofit educational program of the International Association for Human Values (IAHV) that brings a holistic meditation, pranayama and social emotional learning model to help schools manage their well-being.  Her current research investigates immigrants’ experiences in U.S. learning spaces that are committed to equity; she studies how the phenomenon of transnational consciousness in Indian Americans and Hindu Americans informs their advocacy in education. This ethnographic research is theoretically grounded in decoloniality. As an educational scholar, Indu is committed to learning from and contributing to the lived experiences and understanding of everyday Hindu Americans. At the heart of her work as an educator and scholar is her unwavering attention to her spiritual life and to her dharma, grounded in sadhana, swadhyaya, shraddha, and seva.

Indu is a second-generation Hindu American raising third-generation Hindu American children. In addition to having experienced how Hinduism is taught in American schools as a student, she has seen how it impacts her children and where it sits in conversations about school, immigration, and teacher education. She has been inspired by the openness and generosity of her academic mentors and feels encouraged by real possibilities and spaces to add Dharmic voices and reverence to the conversation.  Indu is the co-founder and co-director of the Understanding Hinduphobia, an initiative to increase public consciousness and discourse about Hinduphobia, build allyship, and nurture scholarship. She is honored and excited to join the Hindu University of America family as the Interim Director of Education. 

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