Shira Zilberstein loves pondering anything and everything around her. Her curiosities led her to study Sociology and History at Northwestern University, where her senior thesis on the networks of grassroots artists received highest honors and was awarded Best Thesis in Sociology. During her time at Northwestern and directly after graduation, she engaged in diverse research experiences, including a fellowship in Northwestern’s History Department, and internships with the American Bar Foundation, Evanston Department of Housing and Development, and the Israel Center for Educational Innovation. Shira’s enthusiasm for research continues to motivate her as a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology at Harvard University, where her research has been recognized by the National Science Foundation, the Knight Foundation, Harvard’s Center for Political Studies and The Graduate Student Council.
Shira is passionate about teaching, mentoring and expanding access and opportunities in academia and education. She serves as an inaugural member of Harvard Sociology Department’s Committee on Inclusion and Professionalism to help support the success of all students and faculty. As a Program Assistant and the Lead Program Assistant with the Great Books Summer Program, she has taught and developed literary curricula for an international cohort of middle and high school students. Shira has also worked with students with special needs through The Whole Children Foundation, and helped teach English and develop literary curricula for underserved schools through the Yahel Foundation. Her core teaching strengths include topics in the social sciences and humanities, including sociology, history, politics, government, philosophy, and literature, as well as writing assistance, whether it be for creative assignments, essays or admissions applications, and study skills and test preparation.
In high school, Shira was a competitive figure skater. Now, she enjoys gracefully rollerblading, tending to her vegetable garden, reading creative nonfiction essays, and mostly appreciating, but occasionally dappling, in contemporary art.