Maya is a native Philadelphian. She earned her BA in Religion with a minor in Jewish Studies from Temple University, where she focused her work on deconstructing essentialized narratives of Jewishness that marginalize Middle Eastern Jews. Her current academic interests lie broadly in the histories, migrations, and nostalgias of Iraqi Jews, with respect to how cultural and social circumstances in Iraq and dislocations of place in the middle of the twentieth century impacted Iraqi Jews' perceptions of their identities. Maya has achieved intermediate proficiency in modern Hebrew and plans to study Arabic during her MA. After CMES, she intends to pursue a PhD.