Moodjalin Sudcharoen, or Mood, hopped on the plane to the United States of America right after she had earned a B.A. from a university in Bangkok, the city where she grew up. Although her graduate school journey had been a long roller coaster ride, she managed to finish her PhD degree from the University of Chicago in 2020, the year of pandemic and political crises.
Mood is a cultural and linguistic anthropologist, with an interest in migration, childhood and youth, and education. Her first book project explores the political significance of schooling for children of Burmese migrant workers in Thailand. Her ethnographic study was first inspired by a brief conversation with her mother, who was a child of Chinese immigrants grandparents whom she never met. Her mother recounted her experiences as a Thai-born Chinese child who initially attended a Chinese-medium school that shut down due to the anti-communist policy in Thailand. Her mother’s personal history allowed Mood to begin thinking about the connection between schooling, state, and migrant childhood.
Outside of work, Mood is a foodie and a traveler. She also hopes to become a dog mom (again) someday.