Katie Ranhorn

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, United Republic of

Katie Ranhorn

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, United Republic of

Wants to Meet Up

  • Last login about 17 hours ago

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  • Fluent in English, Swahili; learning French, Sinhala, Sinhalese, Spanish
  • 27, Female
  • Member since 2010
  • student, overall do-gooder
  • PhD Hominid Paleobiology, George Washington University
  • No hometown listed
  • Profile 65% complete

About Me


to not only survive graduate school but to enjoy every second of it!


I'm a PhD student at GWU, studying anthropology/ archaeology/human evolution. I moved to DC after living in Tanzania, East Africa for 14 months. I don't have a couch (or an apartment for that matter) and am currently traveling.


My personal philosophy can be summed up below by Margaret Mead and Charles Darwin. If they were to somehow live at the same time and have a kid, I would hope to be something like their offspring... :)

"I must admit that I personally measure success in terms of the contributions an individual makes to her or his fellow human beings." — Margaret Mead

"It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change." — Charles Darwin

Why I’m on Couchsurfing


Since I moved here I started going to several CS events and whatnot. I surfed for my first two weeks in this city and now I finally have a couch of my own to offer! A monumental occasion!


Hosting in Tanzania was one of the best experiences of my life. I met the most interesting backpackers from all over the world and was able to show them around my community, introduce them to my English students, and enjoy local cheap food and beer together.

I've surfed a few times: Stockholm, Zanzibar, Honolulu, K'uaai, and Paris. Each time my hosts went above and beyond the call of duty and epic memories were made.

visited 18 states (8%)Create your own visited map of The World or Free ipad travel guide


I'm very interested in anthropology, human evolution, archaeology, human rights, nonprofit work, development, microfinance, and music. Of course my favorite past time is travel and I am always excited to experience a new place. I'm known for choosing countries that are "off the beaten path."

My research interests are: East African archaeology, population genetics, African ancestry, origin of H. sapiens, Middle Stone Age... oh and isotope geochemistry (a bit)

Basically I'm just in awe of the universe and love to chat about it!

Music, Movies, and Books

I'm a bibliophile and can never read enough books. My favorite fiction includes Siddartha, Life of Pi, Lolita, and Reading Lolita in Tehran. I love to hear suggestions for good fiction :) I am also a nerd and read a lot of science books, especially Carl Sagan. I'm starting to read more Dawkins now and am basically interested in anything involving evolutionary biology or culture.

As far as music is concerned, my top three bands would have to be Radiohead, The Beatles, and The Allman Brothers Band. Pink Floyd and Bob Dylan are up there too. I grew up in the south and therefore love southern classic rock (with a tinge of country at times) I've been on a house/techno kick for months now, and I love me some bongo flava from TZ/Kenya.

If I'm not spending my money on plane/train/bus tickets or new books, I'm likely spending it on concerts or music festivals.

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

things I've done: left my life behind to start a little project in East Africa, learned Swahili, excavated in Kenya and Tanzania, highest bungy jump in the world, backpacked over 10 African countries

things I've seen: the Serengeti at sunrise, chimpanzees in the wild, rollings hills of Rwanda, tea estates in Sri Lanka, 3-million-year-old hominin fossils in Ethiopia...

Teach, Learn, Share

Life is like a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Einstein

Countries I’ve Visited

Belize, Botswana, Canada, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mexico, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Countries I’ve Lived In

Tanzania, United States

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