Cristiana Grigore


Roma Peoples Project

Cristiana Grigore is a research scholar and the founder of the Roma People's Project at Columbia University, an initiative that spotlights Roma peoples and expands Roma studies by examining topics such as identity and stigma, mobility and displacement, and archival research and digital scholarship. Herself a Roma—a member of Europe's largest minority— she has firsthand experience internalizing stigma and concealing one's ethnicity.

Upon arriving in the United States in 2006, Cristiana found a more conducive environment in which to express her Roma identity. She is currently writing a book that explores how her immersion in American culture enabled her to grapple more fully with her Roma/Gypsy ethnicity. Her experiences have been featured by The New York Times, CNN, Al Jazeera America, PRI, and Voice of America, among other outlets.

A Fulbright Scholar from Romania, Cristiana graduated from Vanderbilt University with an MA in International Education Policy and Management in December 2012. She earned her BA in Psychology from the University of Bucharest in 2007.

In 2008, Cristiana co-founded a nonprofit organization, Link Education and Practice (LEAP), which promotes informal education as a way of helping Romanian college students bridge the gap between higher education and the demands of a changing 21st-century workforce.

In her spare time, Cristiana studies ballet to fulfill her need for artistic expression.

You can learn more about Cristiana Grigore and her work by visiting