A person smiling at the camera.

Helia Sadeghi

Coordinator, Scholars at Risk Project

Human Rights Center


Helia Sadeghi (she, they) is the coordinator for the Afghan Scholars Project at the Human Rights Center. She works directly with visiting scholars and provides them with support as they navigate the visa process. Once they arrive, Helia assists visiting scholars as they adjust to their new lives in the United States, and helps them with translations related to their research. Helia studies psychology with minors in Human Rights and LGBT studies. She is a part of the Human Rights Investigations Lab at the HRC, and worked on a recent project focused on inconsistencies and partisanship in US asylum cases within the immigration court system. Prior to coming to UC Berkeley, Helia worked as a case manager at an immigration law firm and worked on asylum and cancellation-of-removal cases. She has also been working as an independent interpreter for USCIS, the San Francisco Asylum Office, and various immigration law firms for the past four years. Helia was born and raised in Isfahan, Iran, and arrived in the US as a refugee. She speaks fluent Farsi and conversational Spanish, and also runs a small baking business and food blog.