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Sebastian Modak is a writer and multimedia journalist who finds and tells stories about travel, culture, the arts, science, and technology. He is currently the New York Times 52 Places Traveler, spending the year reporting from each of the places on the Times’ 52 Places to Go in 2019 list. Before that, he worked for three years at Condé Nast Traveler where he was first an editor and then a staff writer. When he’s not somewhere else, he’s usually in New York City.

Sebastian spent a year and a half working as a producer on the MTV World series Rebel Music. In 2013, Sebastian was the recipient of a Fulbright-mtvU Fellowship, which allowed him to travel to Botswana, where he spent a year documenting the local hip-hop scene. He also worked at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts for over two years as a writer and researcher.

Besides Botswana and the U.S., Sebastian has lived in Hong Kong, Australia, India, and Indonesia, and traveled to over 60 countries. He’s of mixed Colombian and Indian heritage. “Where are you from?” is a complicated question.

When he’s not writing, Sebastian is probably playing the drums. Over the years, he has performed, recorded, and toured in several bands, ranging from noise rock to experimental hip-hop.

Sebastian has a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, where he majored in English and History and minored in Music and African Studies.

You can follow Sebastian at @sebmodak on Twitter and Instagram.


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