Storytelling that encompasses the trials of cultural assimilation by a growing number of international students in a country that is not their own, and the process of embracing differences and diversity is extremely difficult. Divya Murthy ’19 makes the impossible courageously, authentically, unapologetically possible.
Murthy is a junior studying magazine journalism in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications as well as history and economics in the College of Arts and Sciences. Having lived in Chennai, India her entire life, Murthy has always been fascinated by how people interact with each other and how they share their stories. When she arrived on campus in the fall of 2015, she quickly plugged into the Syracuse community of writers. Murthy’s body of work is impressive; she is a writer at the Daily Orange, a writer for the Newhouse Student News Team, the public relations chair for the South Asian Student Association and now the editor at Globalists, a digital publication she helped co-found this year.
Constantly fascinated by the rhythmns of life surrounding her, Murthy has been keen on telling her own story, but more passionate about telling the stories of others. She co-founded Globalists this fall with Hanna Benavides ’19 Saniya More ’19, a fellow international student who recognized the need for the narratives of international students at Syracuse University to be shared. Globalists was born out of a collection of student ideas that explore the diversity of voices on campus. This platform was created to express conversations that are extremely vital for students with international backgrounds. But, the Globalists felt that these conversations are not talked about enough at American college campuses. .
“Globalists aim to bridge the gap between American students and international students. Yes, we have very different stories, but we also share the same human experience of fitting in, of growing up, of growing into our own. That’s beautiful and it’s real,” Murthy explains.
As the head editor of Globalists, Murthy oversees idea pitches every week as well as reaching out to writers who might have interesting stories to tell. Globalists welcome writers of all levels. Murthy and her team works closely with writers from all backgrounds on copy editing and finalizing every article.
“We are publishing important stories, but what’s much more exciting is that these stories are reaching people we really want to reach,” Murthy describes. Recently, a Globalist article on newly elected Student Association President Ghufran Salih garnered close to 2,000 digital impressions and 350 likes on Facebook purely through organic reach.
Globalists is hosting Joint Narratives, a discussion taking place in Newhouse 3 Room 432/434 on Friday, April 20 at 2:30-3:30PM. The event is a student-led dialogue that discusses the role of diversity in today’s media landscape.
Beside running Globalists, Murthy publishes intimate, sometimes hilarious and consistently wonderful blog posts in her personal blog, The Fourth PowerPuff Girl. Murthy is fearlessly herself in each story she tells, whether that is pondering what it means to be 21, or giving her take on the hype surrounding the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks Coffee. Murthy is passionate about this blog, which she has been running since she was still in high school back in India. “It’s important for me to maintain this part of my identity. On this blog, I don’t follow the rules I’ve learned in school about writing and storytelling. This is the most unfettered, human version of my thoughts, and I’m sharing them hoping that my readers will feel the courage to do the same,” Murthy says.
A freelance writing powerhouse, Murthy is expanding her wings in storytelling this summer as she joins the Hachette Book Group for an internship in New York City.
Photo and story by Amanda Chou ‘18, Blackstone LaunchPad Global Media Fellow