- Ph.D. Princeton University, 2010 (Sociology)
- Dissertation: Immigrant Naturalization and Nation-Building in North America
- B.A. Yale University, 2001 (Sociology)
Professor Aptekar holds a PhD in Sociology and taught in sociology and critical ethnic and community studies at UMass Boston for six years before joining SLU. She is currently working on two book projects: (1) one based on her work with Professor Amy Hsin (Queens College) on educational and work trajectories of undocumented CUNY students, and (2) a book examining the experiences of immigrants in the US military from an anti-imperialist perspective. Dr. Aptekar is also involved in a research project with colleagues that considers the intersections between the immigrant rights movements and anti-capitalist movements. Her former research projects have included a study of public space in Astoria, Queens, which focused on gentrification, race, diversity, and collective memory, and an examination of citizenship acquisition by immigrants in the US and Canada. Dr. Aptekar is an organizer in the Public Higher Education Workers network with Labor Notes, and a long-time activist in the higher education labor movement. She was born in the Soviet Union and grew up in Brooklyn, New York. She worked as a certified public school teacher before returning to academia.