Lauren Kiyo Higa
BA in Asian American Studies and Psychology, UC Santa Barbara
Research Interests:Postcolonial psychology and healing; Okinawan-American history and identity; diasporic connections to homeland; cross-racial solidarity and the school-to-prison pipeline; mixed race issues
My name is Lauren Higa, and I hail from the suburbs of Los Angeles. I graduated from UC Santa Barbara (2017) with a B.A. in Asian American Studies and Psychology with honors. Now, I’m excited to be pursuing a concurrent degree in Asian American Studies (MA) and Social Work (MSW) at UCLA. I’m a third-generation Filipina (Ilongga)-Okinawan-American, and many of my research interests stem from this criss-crossing. They include postcolonial psychology; methods of healing from intergenerational, colonial, and racial trauma; Okinawan-American history and identity; diasporic connections to homeland, especially through performance — Pilipino Cultural Nights, hand-tapped tattoos (batok, irezumi), and taiko; cross-racial solidarity and the school-to-prison pipeline; critical pedagogy; and mixed race issues. When I’m not enveloped in these things, I like to root for the Dodgers, get all-you-can-eat shabu-shabu, and play with my dogs.