Beenish Ahmed is a reporter, writer, and the founder of THE ALIGNIST, a venture that connects international novels to international news.
As a 2019-2020 Spencer Education Journalism Fellow at Columbia University,Ahmed will explore school desegregation and affirmative action. As a reporter at WNYC in New York City, she revealed how a subway renovation program fell afoul of federal accessibility laws and explored the long term impact of racial isolation for alumni of a top high school.
Ahmed has reported for The New Yorker, Harpers, The Atlantic, and NPR, among other outlets. She reported from Haiti on how Vodou offers sanctuary for queer people; from Kenya on why tribal elders have been violently attacked by family members; and from Malawi on a grassroots effort to stop a sexual rite-of-passage for young girls.Ahmed also spent two years reporting in Pakistan, covering a variety of topics including a smart phone-based scheme to combat a dengue fever epidemic and a beauty salon that employs acid burn survivors.
She got her start in reporting as a Kroc Fellow at NPR. As a Fulbright Scholar to the United Kingdom, Ahmed earned a masters degree in Modern South Asian Studies from the University of Cambridge. She graduated from the University of Michigan with degrees in Political Science as well as Creative Writing and Literature.