Author Aarti Shahani talks to students at Essex High School

You might recognize the name Aarti Shahani as winner tech reporter for NPR and podcast host power art. This hour, Vermont Edition features an encore presentation of host Mikaela Lefrak’s interview with Shahani, recorded live on Zoom in February with an audience of Essex High School students.

An immigrant from Morocco, with family roots in Pakistan and India, Shahani moved as a child to Flushing, Queens in New York. She and her family have overstayed their temporary visas in an attempt to achieve the American dream. Shahani’s father managed to open a small electronics store on Broadway, and Shahani got a scholarship to a prestigious prep school in Manhattan.

But that all changed when her father was arrested and sent to prison for mistakenly selling goods to the notorious Cali drug cartel. Shahani took a year off to fight for his release and prevent him from being deported. She documents her family history in her memoir We are here: American dreams, American nightmares.

In early February, Shahani was invited to discuss her memoir and share her experiences with around 100 students from Essex High School’s Global Leadership Program.

Broadcast on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

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