Dialika is a Ph.D student in Sociology and a Paul F. Lazarsfeld Fellow at Columbia University. Her research focuses on (1) immigrant assimilation and (2) race and ethnicity in the context of America’s changing racial demographics. Her dissertation project, tentatively titled “Redefining Blackness: Race, Ethnicity and the Children of African Immigrants” studies the processes by which the children of West African immigrants integrate into American society and the racial and ethnic identity-work central to these processes. She draws on 127 interviews and ethnographic observations with West African students, their teachers, and Black American, Hispanic and Afro-Caribbean peers across three New York City high schools. This project has implications for how we understand assimilation processes among racialized immigrants and sheds light on how the influx of African immigrants is redefining conceptions of Blackness. This research is supported by grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Prior to Columbia, Dialika graduated from Pomona College in 2012 with a B.A. in Sociology. She has also worked in youth development programs, including 3 years as an Academic Associate at Highbridge Voices in the Bronx and 1 year with Americorps-City Year as a tutor and mentor at Harper High School in Chicago.