Q&A with Nanda Grow

Nanda Grow.An evolutionary and behavioral ecologist in the Department of Anthropology, Nanda Grow joined the WSU faculty in August and is interested in how natural selective pressures shape the behavior and biology of primates.

What is your main research topic?
“I study primate adaptation to different environments, like mountaintops, as a way to understand how the earliest ancestors of humans might have changed over time. One current project is looking at how primates use different types of vocal communication in different environments.”

What classes do you teach?
“This year I am teaching Introduction to Anthropology (ANTH 101), Introduction to Biological Anthropology (ANTH 260), and Primate Behavioral Ecology (ANTH 381). Next year I will offer a new course: Perspectives on Race ( ANTH 220), wh contrasts the social construction of race with the nature of true biological variation.”

What brought you to WSU Pullman?
I was drawn to Pullman because of the community. The Department of Anthropology has been so welcoming, especially since I moved here during a pandemic, and I’m excited to make connections across campus.

How has COVID-19 changed how you teach?
“I’m a lot more flexible about deadlines because I understand that students have challenging circumstances right now. With online learning, we all have to be patient with one another. I’m also mastering the art of the lecture!”

What is a fun fact about yourself?
“I study unique nocturnal primates, like tarsiers and slow lorises, and do most of my research in the jungles of Indonesia. One tarsier species that I study lives in the mountains and had previously never been observed in the wild!”

Outside of work, I enjoy: traveling, hiking, and camping with my husband, John, and my corgi, Peanut. In my spare time I draw and read sci-fi.

In addition to her teaching and research, she recently helped WSU’s Dr. Universe answer a question about knuckles.

Adapted from WSU Pullman’s Faculty Friday series on Facebook.