Hoda Elsharkawy is a junior at Columbia College, double majoring in Political Science and Middle Eastern Studies. She was born and raised in Jersey City and is of Egyptian, Palestinian, and Moroccan descent. Her identity and upbringing have deeply informed her interests in political violence, terrorism, nuclear weapons, human rights, and U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. As a Mellon Mays Fellow, Hoda engages with literature to explore the conception and actualization of prison and its application in the West and Middle East. In her downtime, Hoda watches dubbed Turkish dramas and (privately) ranks the best pastries in her hometown.