The Short Version
Vyasar Ganesan is a writer from Austin, TX. He’s been published in various places, including the National Gallery of Writing, Agave Magazine and My Entertainment World. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University. His specific literary interests are amateur engineering, food writing, Indian life in America and travel writing, among other fields.
The Long Version
Vyasar Mamta Ganesan was born in Derry, NH, on September 18th, 1990, to an engineer and an artist. Before his first birthday, Vyasar moved to Austin with his mother. He attended La Petit Academy, Kocurek Elementary, Casey Elementary, Fulmore Middle School, Kealing Junior High and the Liberal Arts and Science Academy of Austin, where he graduated under the Distinguished Achievement Program.
In 2008, Vyasar started at Allegheny College in Meadville, PA, one of the oldest liberal arts colleges in the nation. He founded the Laser Graffiti Initiative, starred in two plays, produced and filmed a mock documentary, was published in the Allegheny College Year of Health Compendium, and eventually graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in English. Minoring in Physics, he studied astrophysics extensively, taking math and science classes alongside his humanities for three years. Vyasar was also a Resident Adviser at Allegheny, and in his senior year served as Community Adviser to the largest building complex on campus, the LEED-certified North Village. His senior comprehensive project was a study on DIY and Maker culture, and the impact of amateur engineering, failure and the search for control in his own life.
After Pennsylvania, Vyasar enrolled in Columbia University School of the Arts in New York, NY. In the writing program, he was fortunate enough to learn from luminaries like Phillip Lopate, Bill Wadsworth, Patricia O’Toole, Richard Rodriguez, Lis Harris, Benjamin Taylor and Patricia Hampl, and had the good fortune of befriending a few of them. He studied transmedia with Lance Weiler, the mind behind PANDEMIC, and helped produce MY SKY IS FALLING, a transmedia project devoted to understanding the foster care experience and the struggles of aging out of the system. MSIF premiered at Columbia, and was later featured at the UN’s Envision Conference and DIY Days. Vyasar also partnered with Phillip Lopate in two productions of Bad Plays by Good Writers. Vyasar starred in, stage-managed and helped direct “Guy Domville,” by Henry James and “The Butterfly’s Evil Spell,” by Federico Garcia Lorca. In 2014, Vyasar graduated from Columbia with a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, specializing in Creative Nonfiction. His master’s thesis was a creative look at Indian food in America, exploring the history of his own family and culture within the larger history of Asians in the United States.
Post-graduation, Vyasar moved back home to Austin. Upon arrival, he found work as a substitute teacher at KIPP Austin, a charter school focusing on college readiness from kindergarten onward. He transitioned into his role at Radha Madhav Dham as education director, working to further the aims of Shiksha, the Sunday school nonprofit initiative at the temple, and to develop the Hindu Family Camps held twice a year at Radha Madhav Dham. He left this position in July to begin a career at Texas State University.
Since 1990, Vyasar has worked as an ice cream scooper, a telemarketer, a carpenter, a tutor, an alcohol proctor, an intern for special projects, a house manager and an editor, to say nothing of his time as a resident adviser, community adviser, director, actor, gardener, babysitter, usher, camp counselor, teacher’s assistant, and high school teacher.
Vyasar has had the good fortune of teaching a variety of subjects in a variety of places. At Radha Madhav Dham, one of the biggest Hindu temples in America, he has been a camp counselor, director and teacher for more than 8 years. Vyasar has taught summer camps in theater, engineering, science and cooking at the Circle C Center for Child Development. As an instructor of literature and writing, Vyasar has taught at The Door, a nonprofit organization in New York for struggling youth, the Harlem Children’s Zone Promise Academy, Columbia University’s Summer High School Program, and at Columbia University itself. In Austin, Vyasar has taught at KIPP Austin Public Schools and has been a managing member of Shiksha, the school of Indian arts and culture. Vyasar also taught a summer class on food writing at UT Austin’s Informal Classes, which are offered year round, and are open to the general public.
Currently, Vyasar works as an admissions counselor for Texas State University. He recruits his home city of Austin, and visits with the nearly 100 high schools in the area. He also conducts essay workshops, and is more than happy to sit down with any prospective students who want help with their applications or their essays. You can learn more about Vyasar and Texas State by clicking here.
In conclusion, Vyasar has been to Canada, Mexico, Germany, Switzerland, India, Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales. He has been a participant in the Black Forest Writing Seminars and the Pittsburgh Mini Maker Faire. He has volunteered at the Austin Public Library, the Austin Children’s Museum, the Texas Hot Sauce Festival, and Habitat for Humanity. There are countless other Vyasar stories about countless other topics. If you don’t see something you like here, don’t discount him. No matter what you’re looking for, Vyasar has it.