Meet Our Scholars
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Computer Science and Economics
Maanas Sharma grew up in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, as a gay Indian-American. Isolated in a white, cis, hetero society, he spent much of his childhood nose-deep in a fantasy novel, tinkling away on the faded keys of his piano, or lost in the intricate solution of a new math problem each week. In high school, Maanas found true refuge in the unabashed (and thoroughly queer) debate community. There, a new love for policy bloomed, and he has found a home at the intersections of STEM and social justice ever since. Maanas is the founder & editor-in-chief of the Journal of Interdisciplinary Public Policy, an international publication highlighting advanced nontraditional youth perspectives in policy. Maanas published the landmark data-driven report “States of Emergency: The failure of prison system responses to COVID-19.” Currently, he is on the board of Parivar Bay Area, pushing the fight for queer and trans liberation forward in the South Asian diaspora. Maanas has previously served as the director of finance for Redefy and has written for countless publications, including the MIT Science Policy Review, Youth & Policy, and Working with Older People. Maanas will attend MIT to pursue a joint degree in computer science, economics, and data science.