OSU Chinese Flagship Teams for 2005-10


2009-10 OSU Chinese Flagship Program Team


Kara Babb

Kara Babb.Hometown: Corrales, New Mexico
Undergraduate College: University of Redlands
Undergraduate Major: Global Business, Chinese, Asian Studies
Area of Interest: China’s National Industries
Interests: Travel, Outdoor Sports, Art, Music

My interest in China and the Chinese language stems from studying international business in college. Although I did not begin studying Chinese until my second year of undergraduate study, the challenge of learning a language so different from my own background in Spanish immediately cultivated my interest.

Through my Chinese study I have been lucky enough to travel to almost 15 cities scattered throughout 4 provinces in China. My travels in China have been either related to the study of Chinese business, or intensive study of the language. During my third year of college, I was given the opportunity to study intensive Mandarin at Beijing University, an experience which solidified my decision to continue my Chinese study.

I am currently enrolled in the NSEP Chinese Flagship Program at the Ohio State University studying intensive Chinese with an emphasis on researching China’s National Industries.

Chinese Resume [pdf]
English Resume [doc]

Kara's Graduate Thesis was Research of China’s Private Enterprises and Brands on a Global Background.
Learn more about Kara from her LinkedIn Profile.

Evan Cummins

Evan Cummins.Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: Accounting, Chinese Studies
Area of Interest: Mergers and Acquisitions between Chinese and US Companies
Interests: Chinese Modern Literature, Running, Soccer, 中国古代文学,中国历史,汉赋

I’ve been interested in Chinese since before I can remember. Growing up my best friend was Chinese and I so to an extent I’ve been surrounded by the Chinese culture since a very young age. When I started studying Chinese, my goal was not simply to learn the language, but also to try and learn as much as I could about China’s vast history and rich culture.

My research domain focuses on acquisitions and mergers between Chinese and American companies. By doing a thorough analysis of both successful and unsuccessful M&A cases between Chinese and US companies I hope to be able to identify key factors which can lead to a successful or unsuccessful merger or acquisition.

My overarching goal is that through my research I will eventually be able to increase the ease of interaction between Chinese and US businesses, and thereby strengthen the economic bond being forged between China and the United States. I believe that increased business dealings between China and the U.S. will encourage citizens of both nations to work towards a better mutual understanding and so lead to an even stronger more mutually rewarding relationship between China and the United States.

Evan's Graduate Thesis was An Analysis of the Present State of Sino-American Mergers and Acquisitions and Their Reasons for Success and Failure.

Kara Hill

Kara Hill.Hometown: Cincinnati (Ohio) and Richmond (Kentucky)
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: Japanese
Area of Interest: Environmental Issues
Interests: Languages, Travel, Running, Hiking, Calligraphy

With more than six years experience in research laboratories and scientific publications in leading scientific journals such as the American Journal of Pathology and Experimental Cell Research, I believed I was destined for a career in the scientific community. However, a summer research experience at the University of Tokyo in 2002 ignited an interest in Asia and Asian languages and consequently propelled me on a journey to learn more about this significant and influential part of the world.

Consequently, I spent over five years learning Japanese, one of those years at the Inter-University Center (IUC) in Yokohama. I completed an internship at a Japanese Public Relations firm in Tokyo, and I worked for over a year with 7 & i Holdings at its corporate office, also headquartered in Tokyo. In 2008, I began my study of Chinese at Cornell University, and thereafter continued my studies at the International Chinese Language Program (ICLP) in Taipei as well as Ocean University in Qingdao. Additionally, I spent two years studying Korean at the Ohio State University and I took a ten week course studying the Chinese Minnan dialect at the ICLP. These experiences have given me significant exposure to all East Asian countries and helped me develop a deeper understanding of the interplay between these three Asian powers.

To further familiarize myself with China and the Chinese language, I enrolled in the Ohio State University's Chinese Flagship Program. I am currently working towards a Master's in East Asian Languages and Literature with a concentration on current environmental issues in China.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Kara's Graduate Thesis was Research on Preventing and Remediating the Dust Storms of China: A Case Study Investigating the Development of Salt Water Agriculture.

Sean Keith

Sean Keith.Hometown: Corvallis, Oregon
Undergraduate College: The University of Oregon (UO)
Undergraduate Major: Sociology, Asian Studies and Japanese
Area Interest: International Studies (Public Diplomacy)
Interests: Frisbee, traveling, reading

I began studying Chinese as a sophomore at the UO in 2002. Since then, I have visited China many times for both study and work. In 2002 I studied on exchange for a year at the Chinese Central University for Nationalities. From 2005 to 2006 I taught English, studied Chinese in Beijing, and did an internship at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Beijing Office. I greatly look forward to the following year and the opportunity to return to China for the purpose of improving my understanding of China and the Chinese language.

The quick and dynamic changes that are occurring in China will have a strong impact on both international society and American policy. As an OSU Chinese Flagship student, I hope to utilize my studies to gain a firmer understanding of China on a broad (economic, social, cultural and political) level and a domain specific level (international relations and public diplomacy).

Chinese Resume [docx]
English Resume [doc]

Sean's Graduate Thesis was U.S. Public Diplomacy Toward China.
Learn more about Sean from his LinkedIn Profile.

Prior Leary

Hometown: Louisville, CO
Undergraduate College: Carleton College
Undergraduate Major: International Relations
Graduate College: American University, School of International Service
Graduate Major: MA, International Affairs, Specialization: International Politics
Area of Interest: North Korean Nuclear Crisis’ Influence on Sino-North Korean Relations
Interests: Soccer, Violin, Cooking

I began studying Chinese as an undergraduate at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. At Carleton, I was afforded the opportunity to travel to China twice: first in the spring of 2000 on Carleton’s Political Economy Seminar and later through Carleton’s Chang/Lan Fellowship. These two chances to study in China solidified my fascination with the country and the region. After completing a masters degree in International Politics at American University, I realized that the only way to truly become an expert on China was to improve my language ability. I was drawn to The Ohio State University’s Chinese Flagship Program because of the unique opportunity to intensively study Chinese, while also continuing to specialize in international politics.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Prior's Graduate Thesis was Sino-North Korean Relations and the North Korean Nuclear Problem.
Learn more about Prior from his LinkedIn Profile.

Matthew Margulies

Matthew Margulies.Hometown: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Undergraduate College: Temple University
Undergraduate Major: International Business Administration, Finance
Domain Area: China-Middle East Trade Relations
Interests: History, International Relations, Swimming, Philadelphia Sports

I started my Chinese studies as an undergraduate at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 2005 to supplement my International Business degree. After my semester abroad in Shanghai in 2006, I came to realize two things: first, I wanted to incorporate Chinese language and culture into my future career, second, my current language skills needed serious improving to obtain my first goal. After graduating in 2008, I worked at a Commercial Equipment Finance company outside Philadelphia, serving as the main sales point of contact with our partnering Chinese bank. During my year at this company I realized my language skills were still insufficient to properly conduct myself in a Chinese working environment. Finally, when I learned about the OSU Chinese Flagship Program, and its relationship with the United States government, especially the opportunities presented by the NSEP Flagship Fellowship, I knew that this program was the right choice to help me to achieve my career goal of working for the U.S. Department of State.

Matthew's Graduate Thesis was The Contradictions Created by China’s Middle East Policies and Role, and Future Development Opportunities.
Learn more about Matthew from his LinkedIn Profile.

Daniel Markus

Hometown: Orange, California
Undergraduate College: University of Redlands
Undergraduate Major: Global Business
Area of Interest: The South-North Water Diversion Project’s Impact on China’s Societal Development
Interests: Basketball, Golf, History

I began my study of Mandarin when I was a junior at the University of Redlands primarily to fulfill my graduation requirement. Following my study abroad at Beijing University I gained a greater appreciation and curiosity for both Mandarin and Chinese culture. This curiosity was the driving force behind my Fulbright Fellowship application for Kaohsiung, Taiwan, which allowed me practical application of language and cultural knowledge. During this experience I came to realize I wanted to pursue a career in Asia, more particularly China. In order to strengthen both my language and cultural knowledge I applied to the OSU Chinese Flagship Program. I am flexible in terms of career path, and will pursue careers in both the private and public sector.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Daniel's Graduate Thesis was Methods to relieve the north of China’s water scarcity issue – The South-North Water Project and desalination

James Morin

Hometown: Litchfield, Maine
Undergraduate College: BYU-Idaho
Undergraduate Major: Business Management, emphasis in Finance
Area of Interest: Privatization of government owned industries in China
Interests: Languages, Reading, Dancing, Business, Running, Traveling, Movies

While in my Junior year of high school I enrolled in a business class, having never before had an introduction to the subject. The class was based around a ten week stock market competition, which encompassed high schools from all over the state. Because of our school’s unique schedule, and a mix up with the class’ roll, we began the competition three weeks later than other schools in the state, and I ended up on a team all by myself. At the end of seven weeks, I won the competition, and our school received the Maine State Stock Market Game’s traveling trophy. This experience ignited in me a love of business, and a desire to pursue it for the rest of my life. Chinese didn’t factor into the equation until 2003, when I was called to serve as a missionary for my church in Taiwan. Through this experience I developed a deep love for the Chinese people, language, and culture. It was during this time that the idea of pursuing a life of doing business with China began to take root.

Upon finishing my missionary service in 2005, I returned to the U.S. and completed my undergrad at BYU-Idaho, where I majored in Business, and minored in Chinese. For the summer of 2006 I returned to Taiwan where I studied for eight weeks at the Taiwan National University. The following summer I spent four months in Beijing working as an intern to the CEO of a multi-national corporation. For the last two years of my undergrad experience, I had the opportunity to be employed as BYU-Idaho’s sole Chinese Tutor.

While still in my undergrad I began looking for a way to do business in China. It was then that I was introduced to the Chinese Flagship Program. After researching the program in depth and, upon graduation, I applied and was accepted to The Ohio State University’s Chinese Flagship Program. The unique mission and goals of OSU’s Flagship Program to “...produce professionals with a superior level of Chinese proficiency and professional relationships in the target culture” are exactly what I am looking for to help me fulfill my own life-long goals. I am currently in the second year of the program studying the privatization of government owned industries in China. Upon graduation I will receive a Masters Degree in East Asian Languages and Literature with a concentration in Advanced Chinese Language and Culture.

English Resume [pdf]

James' Graduate Thesis was The Privatization and Nationalization of Government-Owned Industries in China.

Kathryn Nute

Hometown: Virginia Beach, Virginia
Undergraduate College: University of Virginia
Undergraduate Major: Religious Studies Major, International Affairs Minor
Area of Interest: New Media - The Chinese Blogosphere and Its Influence on Chinese Youth Culture
Interests: Buddhist and Islamic studies, traveling, buses

During my time at the University of Virginia, I focused on Buddhist and Islamic studies while exploring foreign languages such as Spanish and Russian. It was not until my 4th year at UVA that I enrolled in a Chinese language course hoping that it would aid my studies in Chinese Buddhism. I also found myself drawn to further studies in Chinese due to my 5-year employment as a campus bus driver, which allowed me to come in contact with large groups of international scholars and foreign nationals. Within my first year of Chinese studies, I enrolled in two accelerated courses and spent my first summer after graduation as an exchange student at East China Normal University in Shanghai. After graduation, I spent time solo-traveling in South Asia, then returned home to Charlottesville, Virginia to begin reforming plans for higher education and researching how to begin a career in China.

I was drawn to The Ohio State University Chinese Flagship Program because of it's emphasis on cross-cultural dialogues and performance-based learning. I have always found that I am happiest when I have the opportunity to immerse myself in Chinese culture and talk to people face-to-face, creating long term friendships and learning from those around me. The Chinese Flagship Program has given me the opportunity and the necessary skills to appropriately function as a part of Chinese society and effectively communicate with people in order to carry out my research.

Kathryn's Graduate Thesis was The Role of Chinese New Media, Specifically Weibo, in Broadcasting Information Concerning Incidents that Reflect Social Issues, and its Influence on the Consolidation of National Public Attention.
Find out more about Kathryn from her LinkedIn Profile.

Andrew Perry

Peter Tierney

Hometown: Madison, Wisconsin
Undergraduate College: University of Wisconsin: Madison
Undergraduate Major: Chinese, Political Science, International Studies (Global Security), and East Asian Studies
Area of Interest: Anti-corruption and good-governance policy
Interests: traveling, politics, music

I started studying Chinese my freshman year of college at UW-Eau Claire, and in my first few courses, I learned the fundamentals of the language. Wanting to pursue more advanced study of the language, I transferred to UW-Madison, which had a more comprehensive Chinese program. At Madison, for my political science major, I studied various aspects of comparative political science, political theory, and international relations, and particularly focused on political issues related to China. These courses made me aware of the growing importance of China’s role in the international system. During this time, I also declared a Chinese major and spent the next three years studying modern Chinese, classical Chinese, and Chinese literature. I spent the summer of my fourth year of undergraduate studying Chinese in Tianjin, China at Nankai University. This experience, as well as my travels across China solidified my interest in working in China in the future. After graduating, I decided that I wanted to have a career in international relations, either as a Foreign Service Officer for the U.S. government or working for a non-governmental organization with a presence in China. In order to achieve this career goal, I knew I needed to achieve a level of Chinese fluency beyond what my undergraduate program had given me. Therefore, in 2009 I joined the Chinese flagship program at OSU, which has a reputation for producing individuals with advanced professional skills and superior language abilities.

Chinese Resume [docx]
English Resume [doc]

Jennifer Young

Jennifer Young.Hometown: Madison, Wisconsin
Undergraduate College: University of Wisconsin Madison
Undergraduate Major: Psychology, Chinese
Area of Interest: Chinese-American Cross-Cultural Marriage
Interests: Reading, traveling, art

While studying Cultural Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison it came to my attention that a lot of cross-cultural research was done by people with working skills in two languages. I decided to take advantage of the small amount of Chinese language that I had inherited from my mother and began to formally study Chinese in 2006. Then, in 2007, I spent the summer immersing myself in language study at Nankai University in Tianjin, China and traveling to rural areas in China. The following summer I was invited participate in the filming of a language learning video in Beijing, where I filled the role of language actor and informal translator. These two experiences gave me two unique and very different perspectives of China. The first was the view from study abroad student experiencing a culture for the first time, and the second trip gave me a taste for what it would be like to cooperate with Chinese people in a work environment.

After these experiences, I was determined to find a program that would be able to give me both suitable language training as well as teach me how to function as a professional in China. The OSU Chinese Flagship Program fit my needs exactly. It allowed me to continue my research into Cross-Cultural Marriage as well as continue to improve my Chinese language skills.

My goal for the future is to work as a Chinese-English Bilingual Psychological Counselor in China, helping families that come from different cultural backgrounds overcome conflict and become more aware and more accepting of the unique aspects of their cultural background.

大家好,我叫杨明明。我是从麦迪逊大学毕业的。本课专业是文化心理学和汉语。现在我在俄亥俄州立大学汉语旗舰工程读硕士研究生。我的研究课题是中美跨国婚姻,具体的研究方向是跨国婚姻中的文化差异与冲突。

我 是从一个英国和中国跨国婚姻的家庭长大的。看到我父母从不同文化背景走到一起来,组织家庭,生养和教育孩子,二十五年来、他们经理了很多由于文化背景不同 的坎坎坷坷的生活。使得我对这样丰富而复杂的关系很感兴趣。由于中国的开放,有越来越多的跨国婚姻。这种跨国婚姻现象对促进世界和平和加强各国有好关系, 起到很大作用。但是由于跨国婚姻只是近十几年来的新生事务,而且它的数量不多,所以对跨国婚姻的了解和认识都比较浅薄。对于跨国婚姻的心理研究更少。

我对这个题目非常感兴趣因为它是一个新的领域。同时,希望我的研究能够弥补对跨国婚姻研究的缺失。现在我学习中文也是为了更好的理解语言在跨国婚姻中的作用。祝我好运气。

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [docx]

Jennifer's Graduate Thesis was Chinese-American Transnational Marriage: Cultural differences and marital satisfaction.


2008-09 OSU Chinese Flagship Program Team


Jake Parker

Jake Parker.Hometown: Tiverton, RI
Undergraduate College: University of Idaho
Undergraduate Major: International Relations
Area of Interest: International Trade
Interests: Snowboarding, Denim

Since my youth Asia has enticed me with its fascinating people and culture. Growing up my father was in the military so naturally we moved every two years. During middle school and high school I spent a total of five years in Japan. It was during this time abroad I had my first opportunity to travel to China. We met my father in Hong Kong. During that time, my family was invited to the Hong-Kong American Club for a party. It was there I realized I wanted to spend the rest of my life studying Chinese language, people, and culture. I met with the US console general to Hong Kong and realized the life of an American expatriate was the life for me.

After high school I enrolled at the University of Idaho. I studied Chinese for two years then traveled to Beijing for a year abroad. While in China I attended the Capitol University of Economics and Business where I studied in an intensive language program through Hamilton College. This program, called ACC, enforced a language pledge and gave my Chinese a needed boost.

I am currently enrolled at The Ohio State University Chinese Flagship Program where I am working towards a Masters in East Asian Languages and Literatures with a domain specialty in international trade.

由于我的爸爸是海军,所以从小我就开始习惯平常搬家。上高中的时候我的父亲是海军,所以我们搬到了日本。我在日本上了高中。

我 觉得在日本的时候有一个比较有意思的故事。是我开始学中文的一个原因。在日本上高中时有一次放假,我跟我的妈妈去县港度假。由于我的父亲是美国海军的船 长,美国俱乐部便邀请我的家庭去参加一个聚会。那天晚上,我们去了香港最高的建筑,美国俱乐部拥有那栋楼最高的三层楼层。从电梯里就看到了世界上最美丽的 地方,我非常赞叹。组织成员都很友好,也很爱国,所以跟他们说话很容易。好像每一位有权威的美国政府人员大多都在那儿休息,其中香港的领事馆领事就是一 位。他请了我和我的父亲跟他一起吸雪茄。我们共同去阁楼套房的阳台吸雪茄,聊天,是相当不合乎规矩的经历。吸完雪茄我们就离开了。这个经历给我带来了从没 有过的感觉。俱乐部成员的生活就是我想要的未来生活。这次经历给我一个新的生活目标,学中文和学中国的紧急情况。

Learn more about Jake from his LinkedIn Profile.

Megan Rogers

Hometown: Brandon, MS
Undergraduate College: The University of Mississippi
Undergraduate Major: International Studies and Chinese
Area of Interest: Religion in Contemporary China
Interests: Reading, writing, traveling

I began studying Chinese the summer before my freshman year in college as part of the National Flagship Language Program at the University of Mississippi. Since then I have been lucky enough to study in Qingdao, Hangzhou, and Suzhou, and I look forward to going back to China and exploring new parts of the country.

I find the social and cultural changes China has experienced over the past thirty years fascinating and have chosen to focus on religion in particular. I am confident that my studies of this topic and the others covered in the Chinese Flagship Program will give me greater insight into contemporary China and provide me with a strong foundation for making the most of my time in China and beyond.

Chinese Resume [doc]

Megan's Graduate Thesis was Contemporary Chinese Religious Scholars’ Views and Opinions of Religion.

Mina Shyu

Hometown: Dublin, OH
Undergraduate College: The College of William and Mary
Undergraduate Major: Biology
Area of Interest: International Relations
Interests: Foreign languages and cultures, food, and travel

Although I grew up in a Chinese-speaking environment, I never pursued formal study of the language in school, thinking the bits and pieces I knew would serve me well enough in anything I wanted to do in life. Later, however, as my interests and goals changed, I realized that this was a misjudgment on my part, and that merely a basic knowledge of the language would not make me effective in a China-related career. When I started researching my options for graduate school, I did so with the intent of finding a program that would equip me with the skills I needed to work successfully with China and its people.

The Chinese Flagship program here at OSU appealed to me because of its focus on both language and culture learning. In my time here, I feel like I have gained truly invaluable skills in both arenas, and my understanding of China has deepened with these new skills. Upon graduation, I hope to use the knowledge I have gained here to contribute to an even deeper mutual understanding between China and the United States.

Mina's Graduate Thesis was China’s Policy Response to the 2008 Financial Crisis: Analysis and Evaluation.

Micah Wallin

Micah Wallin.Hometown: Waimanalo, HI
Undergraduate College: University of Hawaii
Undergraduate Major: Chinese Language and East Asian Studies
Area of Interest: China’s Alternative Energies
Interests: Cooking, eating, watching movies, making/fixing stuff

I am a hapa (Hawaiian for mixed blood) of Chinese and Native American descent. I grew up learning I was Chinese, but never really understood why. It wasn’t until I started college at the University of Hawaii that I was introduced to Chinese language and culture.

After graduation, I moved to China to develop in understanding of how Chinese do business. While in China I was fortunate enough to teach English in some of Shandong provinces poorest farming communities. During my time there, I surrounded by some of the poorest and happiest people I have ever met. From this point on, I knew that I must improve my Chinese language and cultural understanding and found that the Flagship Program could help me do just that.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Micah's Graduate Thesis was China’s Wind Energy Development and Prediction.
Learn more about Micah on his LinkedIn Profile.

Paul Schnaars

Hometown: Centerport, NY
Undergraduate College: Cornell University
Undergraduate Major: Economics
Area of Interest: Economics
Interests: History, Art, Literature, Basketball

I did not begin studying Chinese until three years after I received my undergraduate degree. However, it has been one of the most rewarding decisions I have ever made. So far I have had the opportunities to pursue my studies in Taibei, Xi'An, and Qingdao. In the future I hope to broaden my travel experiences and deepen my understanding of China's diverse geography and culture.

I am currently researching the economic and social changes brought about by the economic reforms of the past thirty years. I am confident that my studies will help me understand China's course of development and that the Chinese Flagship Program will provide me with all the necessary tools and assistance that I need to make the most of my time abroad.

Paul's Graduate Thesis was Jian Shan Village: Case-Study Research and Evaluation of China’s “New Socialist Villages”.

Casey Lister

Casey Lister.Hometown: Des Moines, IA
Undergraduate College: Pomona College
Undergraduate Major: East Asian Literature
Area of Interest: Marketing
Interests: History, Literature, Foreign Languages and Cultures

My interest in Chinese began in high school with my school offering a class on Chinese culture. I saw the opportunity as a chance to better understand a foreign culture and bridge the gap between cultures on a personal level. This interest has guided me through my college degree and provided me with diverse experiences living in Beijing, Xi’an, and Qingdao.

I first learned of the Chinese Flagship Program from Dr. Eric Shepherd while taking business classes at Iowa State University. I was convinced that cultural cues and contexts were as important as language ability itself. Hence, the OSU Chinese Flagship commitment to teaching the cultural aspects of communication fit well with my own learning ambitions.

I enrolled in Chinese Flagship in Summer 2008 and have found the program very rewarding. My one-on-one tutor classes have given me the opportunity to study the landscape of Chinese marketing from word-of-mouth to cultural influences in market segmentation. I am particularly looking forward to the second-year internship experience, where I will be able to implement much of my learning.

My original impetus to study Chinese language has undergone a slight transformation. Now, while continuing to bridge gaps on a personal level, I hope to be able to use my abilities to promote cultural understanding in brand management.

Chinese Resume [pdf]

Dan Rotnem

Hometown: Cuyahoga Falls, OH
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: International Studies- Focus on International Terrorism and Chinese
Area of Interest: Chinese Foreign Policy
Interests: Martial Arts, Motorcycles, and Movies

When applying to colleges my senior year in High School, I had few criteria. One of the most important was that the school must have a Chinese major program. After finding out about OSU's program, it was an easy decision to make it my number one choice. I declared a Chinese major the first quarter of my freshman year and never looked back. In the following few years I finished the requirements for the Chinese major, as well as a minor in International Studies.

After the first two years, I went on a study abroad trip to Qingdao. It is during this trip that I became familiar with the Chinese Flagship Program and decided to apply as soon as possible. During this trip I also developed many close friendships, and am still in contact with the people I met there. In Autumn 2008 I was accepted into the Flagship Program and began full-time graduate work while I finished my undergraduate degree.

Ohio State's Chinese Flagship program has helped me not only develop my language skills, but also enhanced my ability to communicate across the cultural boundaries. It constantly stretches my language abilities to new levels and provides me with innumerable opportunities to engage native speakers on a personal level. Additionally, the program allows me to further my studies in International Relations, in effect making it a dual-degree program. I believe this combination will be the key to a future in U.S.-Chinese relations

Dan's Graduate Thesis was Post-WTO Chinese Foreign Policy: The balance between idealism and realism.

David Holzbauer

Hometown: Groveport, Ohio
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: International Relations and Chinese
Area of Interest: Chinese Grain Security
Interests: Football, computer gaming, cars, and movies

I began studying Chinese as a high school student. After graduation I left home for the first time and went to Wuxi city Jiangsu Province to teach English. With only a basic language ability and little knowledge of culture, the next six months fundamentally changed the course of my life. My experiences in China compelled me to go back to school and continue studying.

I enrolled at Ohio State as a Chinese and International Studies major. In 2008 I joined the Chinese Flagship Program and began researching Chinese grain security, particularly how new land policies are affecting grain production. The Flagship Program has not only provided language instruction, but also has helped me develop the cultural and professional knowledge required to succeed in China.

David's Graduate Thesis was Land Transfer, Large-Scale Agriculture and China's Grain Security.

Shaun Newcomer

Shaun Newcomer.Hometown: Mentor, Ohio
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: Chinese and Economics
Area of Interest: Tourism and Economic Development
Interests: Travel, foreign languages and cultures, Chinese Medicine, TaiQi, Chinese Performing Arts, Computers, “DouDiZhu”, Economics, Chinese Minority Cultures

My original interests in Chinese came from experiences I had as a small child in Cleveland's Chinatown. However, these interests were merely the fascinations of a child. Neither my family nor myself ever would have guessed Chinese would play an important role in my life.

After transferring to Ohio State in 2004 as an Economics major, I learned that one of the requirements for graduating with any degree was a minimum of two years studying a foreign language. Unfortunately, my modest attempt at mastering German in high school didn't get me very far in college, so I had to start from scratch. After putting immense thought into which language to study, I came down to a decision between two less commonly studied languages: Chinese and Japanese. Finally, through what some might say is either pure chance or fate, I used the tried and true method of "the coin flip" to help me decide. The rest is history.

After only two quarters of Chinese I fell in love with the language and culture, eventually leading towards the decision to take on Chinese as a second major. As an undergrad I took advantage of OSU's excellent study abroad opportunities and spent nearly two years in Qingdao, Taiwan and Kunming furthering my studies. My travels opened my eyes to the beauty and complexity of the world and also instilled in me the importance of cultural understanding and exchange.

In the fall of 2008 I began the flagship program with hopes of taking my proficiency in Chinese language and culture to the next level. After completing one year in Columbus I proceeded to do an internship at Minshan International Travel Services in Chengdu, where I got a first-hand look at the Chinese tourism industry from the inside out. During my time in Chengdu, and the 6-months studying at Nanjing University that followed, I conducted research on the Chinese Tourism Industry, specifically examining the adoption of E-tourism in Southwest China.

Then as now, I devote myself towards gaining the skills necessary to be a "bridge" between the United States and the greater Chinese-speaking world.

Chinese Resume [pdf]
English Resume [pdf]

Shaun's Graduate Thesis was Chinese Travel Agencies & The Internet Age: An Analysis of the Adoption of Internet Tourism in Chengdu, China
Learn more about Shaun from his LinkedIn Profile.

Timothy Durgin

Hometown: East Brunswick, NJ
Undergraduate College: The College of William and Mary
Undergraduate Major: Chinese and Government
Area of Interest: Environmental Protection in China
Interests: Music, Working-out, Politics, Video Games

I began studying Chinese as a freshman at The College of William and Mary. At the time I didn’t plan to major in Chinese, but soon found I enjoyed learning about Chinese language and culture. During my sophomore year, I decided to become a double major, with Chinese eventually replacing Government as my primary major. Two summers ago I studied Chinese at Tsinghua University as part of William and Mary’s China Summer Program, and returned there for the Fall semester. Last Summer I participated in Ohio State University’s Qingdao program, furthering my knowledge of Chinese culture.

I am currently researching the water pollution in Taihu Lake, located in on the border of Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces. My goal is to draft a plan on how to better care for the lake and hopefully improve the water quality, making the water in the lake safe to use again. I plan to visit the lake myself this summer and conduct interviews with local residents, scientists, and government officials in order to better understand the problem and possible solutions to it.

Timothy's Graduate Thesis was Pollution Prevention in Lake Tai.


2007-08 OSU Chinese Flagship Program Team


Alan Jameson

Alan Jameson.Hometown: Maplewood, NJ
Undergraduate College: Lawrence University
Undergraduate Major: International Relations and East Asian Studies
Area of Interest: Microfinance
Interests: Chinese rock music, ultimate frisbee

I started studying Chinese as a Sophomore in College where I graduated with a major in International Relations and East Asian Studies. As a graduate student I am studying Microfinance in China. I am particularly interested in how an increasingly mobile Chinese population is impacting efforts to develop credit in the countryside.

China has recently emphasized the importance of extending economic growth to the poorer regions of China, establishing functioning credit systems will be essential in achieving this goal.

I began studying Chinese with the belief that China is changing the world. I viewed Chinese study as both professionally useful and civically responsible. When I finally had a chance to go to China, my fascination with the different opinions I encountered gave me a much more personal reason to study Chinese. I came to the flagship not only because I wanted to be immersed in the language and culture, but because I also want to better understand the Chinese world-view.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Alan's Graduate Thesis was Obstacles and Opportunities for Microcredit Companies Developing in the Countryside.

Christopher Stellato

Christopher Stellato.Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Undergraduate College: Miami University, Oxford, Ohio
Undergraduate Major: Comparative Religions
Area of Interest: Modern Literature, Chinese Folk Storytelling
Interests: Folk Storytelling Traditions, Beijing Culture, Xiangsheng

While at Miami University I became interested in Buddhist, Taoist and Confucian traditions. My interests in Chinese religious and philosophical traditions lead me to the Chinese language.

After graduating from college in 2005, I decided to further my language studies in China. During my time studying Chinese at Beijing Language University, I became fascinated with old Beijing culture, especially storytelling traditions, both oral and written. In the summer of 2007 I joined the Chinese Flagship Program, focusing my research on modern Chinese literature, particularly the works of Laoshe, Lin Yutang, Qian Zhongshu etc.

After graduating from the Chinese Flagship Program in the summer of 2009, I plan on continuing on to a doctoral degree in Chinese storytelling traditions.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Christopher's Graduate Thesis was Bian Tianxia: Yi Wei Zhongguo Gucai Xifa Yanyuan— Fang Yinting De Yishu Shengya Yu Zhongguo Minjian Xifa De Weilai Fazhan Fangxiang.

Donald Newman

Donald Newman.Hometown: Parma, Ohio
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: Chinese
Area of Interest: International Relations
Interests: Foreign languages and cultures, traveling, music, guitar

I started studying Chinese as a high school senior taking post-secondary classes at Cleveland State University. I enjoyed it so much that I enrolled at The Ohio State University as a Chinese major the following year. During the summer of 2004, I participated study abroad program in Qingdao, China. I left Qingdao with lasting friendships and a unique understanding of cross-cultural communication that have directed my career interests ever since. During the 2005-2006 academic year, I directly enrolled in Beijing Language and Culture University on scholarship from the Chinese Ministry of Education. After my year abroad, I returned to OSU and graduated the following winter quarter (2007).

Being an Ohio State student, I was already well introduced to the Chinese Flagship Program. From the information I gathered from classmates and teachers, Flagship seemed to fit my interests perfectly—not only could I continue to study Chinese language and culture, but also develop my interest in International Relations. Since my enrollment, I have benefitted greatly from the courses and instruction Flagship has provided, particularly from the one-on-one instruction I get from my domain mentor. After graduation, I plan to use my training to pursue a career promoting the mutual understanding and benefit of China and the U.S., possibly with United States government.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Donald's Graduate Thesis was Hunan’s “TV Soldiers” Go Global: Understanding the Cultural Roots and Implications Behind Hunan TV World.

Irene Hsiao

Irene Hsaio.Hometown: Tempe, Arizona
Undergraduate College: University of Arizona
Undergraduate Major: Journalism
Area of Interest: Poverty and Education
Interests: Working out, hiking, writing, reading, traveling

My journey to the Chinese Flagship Program has been quite roundabout.  When I was 19, I spent an unforgettable summer in China not only studying Chinese but also camping on the Great Wall and falling off a camel in the Gobi Desert.  I found China fascinating – but it was not in the cards for me at that moment to study Chinese intensively.

I studied journalism in college, went on to work as a crime and general-assignment reporter for two newspapers in Arizona and later did a stint a graduate school in public administration.  Last summer, I found myself in Qingdao with the rare opportunity to reclaim the Chinese that I had lost over time as well as improve from where I last left off.  As a heritage learner of Chinese, I have been learning bits and pieces of Chinese on and off for most of my life, but, frankly, could never find any practical use for my Chinese.  I had always viewed Chinese as a hobby because it was incredibly daunting and intriguing at the same time.

However, now that I have finally found the right opportunity to devote my energies to studying Chinese, I hope that through Flagship I can turn that hobby into a career using my Chinese skills.

Irene's Graduate Thesis was The Springs Bud Program in Pingdu, Shandong (China) GE AN YAN JIU: SHANDONG PINGDU DE CHUN LEI JI HUA.

Jacob Johnsen

Jacob Johnsen.Hometown: Kearney, MO
Undergraduate College: Utah State University
Undergraduate Major: Economics/Pre-Law
Area of Interest: Localization Strategies of International Business
Interests: Chinese language and culture, travel, reading

I was raised in a small, mid-western town and had very little interaction with Asian languages or culture for the first twenty years of my life. After attending two semesters at Utah State University, I volunteered to serve as a religious missionary and was assigned to Taipei, Taiwan. While in Taiwan, I spent two years learning Chinese and interacting with individuals of various backgrounds. Upon returning to the United States in 2005, I continued studying Chinese, and began looking for post-graduate language study opportunities. The Chinese Flagship Program immediately appealed to me as an opportunity to expand my area of language capability and gain rare and valuable experiences.

In May 2007, I graduated from USU with a Bachelor’s of Arts in Economics/Pre-Law and a minor in Chinese. I entered the Chinese Flagship Program at Ohio State University shortly thereafter with the intent of improving my knowledge of Chinese language and culture, with a particular interest in understanding international enterprises’ opportunities and challenges in the vast and expanding Chinese economy.  Since joining the Chinese Flagship Program, I have been continually impressed with the variety and quality of classes and instructors.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Learn more about Jacob from his LinkedIn Profile.

Lucas Geller

Lucas Geller.Hometown: Hillsdale, NY
Undergraduate College: George Mason University
Undergraduate Major: International Studies (Chinese Minor)
Area of Interest: Chinese Media
Interests: Chinese Language and Culture, Politics and Martial Arts.

I began training Chinese Wushu (martial arts) when I was thirteen with two coaches who had recently emigrated from China.  After graduating from high school, I took a year off before going to college and attended Beijing Sports University, studying Wushu and Chinese.  It was during this year abroad that, in addition to martial arts, I found a passion for learning Chinese and about Chinese culture.  I decided upon returning to the US to focus on learning as much about the two as possible. 

I majored in International Studies and focused a majority of my attention on politics, including American foreign policy and the politics of Asia.  During my undergraduate career I was fortunate to spend another two summers in China studying at various institutions.  I was also the recipient of the Chinese Government Scholarship which allowed me to study at the university of my choice my senior year.  I chose Sichuan University.  In 2007 I graduated from George Mason University with a degree in International Studies and a minor in Chinese.

I wanted to continue my education of Chinese and found out about the Chinese Flagship Program at OSU.   The program’s description, most notably its emphasis on language and the opportunity to spend an entire year in China, is what attracted me the most.  I knew that to reach that next level, to use my Chinese professionally, the Chinese Flagship Program would be an invaluable asset.    

In 2007 I qualified as a member of the USA Wushu Team and will be representing the US in the 2008 Pan-American Wushu Games.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Video collection [zip] of speeches by Lucas Geller.

Lucas' Graduate Thesis was Strategic Clarity and Strategic Ambiguity: News Reports on the Taiwan Strait Issue in Official Sino-American Media, A Case Study of Comparative Media.

Nathan Arp

Ruoyang Jin

Ruoyang Jin.Hometown: San Jose, CA
Undergraduate College: University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)
Undergraduate Major: Communications and Political Science
Area of Interest: Chinese media and public opinion
Interests: Cooking, eating, photography, traveling

Although I grew up speaking Chinese with my family, I had never seriously considered studying it until college. The summer before college I had somewhat of an enlightening experience. The opportunity arose for me to interpret contract negotiations for a business seeking a Chinese counterpart. Even back then with my primary level of broken Chinese I was able to help them form a partnership. Both parties were pleased, and I was happy. I then realized that Chinese was a skill I could develop and hone to someday mutually benefit both the U.S. and China. I could think of no better life’s goal than that.

My sophomore year at UCLA I started studying Chinese, and I haven’t stopped since. The Chinese Flagship program has given me a deeper understanding of the identity and expectations of Chinese people, something I could not derive from my years of experience with Chinese culture. I will take this newfound understanding with me through all my endeavors to strengthen the bond between the U.S. and China.

Chinese Resume [pdf]
English Resume [pdf]

Russell Kratzer

Russell Kratzer.Hometown: Charlotte, NC
Undergraduate College: Columbia University
Undergraduate Major: Political Science/International Relations
Area of Interest: China’s Migrant Workers
Interests: Foreign languages and cultures, international politics, sports

I spent the summer after my freshman year of high school in Kunming, China and became interested in the Chinese language and culture. During my first summer there I became familiar with the basic sounds of Mandarin and learned a few key phrases. After studying Spanish in high school and German in college, I took an elementary Chinese class during my senior year in college. In 2000, I joined the Peace Corps and moved to Tianshui, Gansu, where I taught English at Tianshui Normal University. During my two years in China, I spent the majority of my free time studying Chinese and speaking the language with friends and neighbors.

After Peace Corps, I worked at the US-China Business Council in Washington, DC for one year. I then went back to China to improve my Chinese reading and writing skills at Fudan University in Shanghai. In 2004, I returned to my hometown of Charlotte, NC and began working as a child advocate at the Council for Children’s Rights. I spent three years helping children with special needs and children involved in the juvenile delinquency system gain access to services to meet their educational and mental health needs.

Although I enjoyed working as a child advocate, I wanted a career that would allow me to use the Chinese language and stay connected to China. The Chinese Flagship Program was appealing to me because it offered me the chance to improve my Chinese language skills by conducting meaningful research on an interesting topic. I am currently researching China’s migrant workers and the issues which affect them, such as employment discrimination, poor working conditions, inadequate compensation, and lack of medical insurance. I hope that my research will contribute to a better understanding of these issues and will be useful to advocates for migrant workers in China.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Russell's Graduate Thesis was Qingdao Nong Min Gong Lao Dong He Tong Fa Shi Shi Zhuang Kuang De Diao Yan: She Hui Bao Xian Wen Ti Tu Chu.
Learn more about Russell from his LinkedIn Profile.


2006-07 OSU Chinese Flagship Program Team


Drew Burns

Drew Burns.Hometown: Shoreview, MN
Undergraduate College: The George Washington University
Undergraduate Major: International Affairs and Chinese
Area of Interest: Modern Chinese Society
Interests: Foreign languages and cultures, 'Xiangsheng', travel

I began studying Chinese as a freshman in college, pairing a major in Chinese Language with a second major in International Affairs. As a graduate student I am currently studying Modern Chinese Society, particularly the manner in which Chinese society has changed since the economic reforms of the 1980’s. During my time studying abroad in China I had a chance to learn firsthand from my friends and their parents about their country has been changing. I look forward to continuing my study during the overseas portion of our program.

I enrolled in the OSU Chinese Flagship Program in the Fall of 2006, and have had the opportunity to study China’s social change in-depth with my one-on-one tutor. I have also enjoyed the program’s emphasis on culture; in addition to my academic interest in Chinese society, I am interested in Chinese performance culture and this year began studying the Chinese art of xiang sheng. Through this program I hope to pursue my career goals while at the same time broadening my understanding of Chinese culture.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Video collection [zip] of speeches by Drew Burns.

Drew's Graduate Thesis was The Self-Understanding, Self-Evaluation and Analysis of China's New Social Stratum.

James Wilson

James Wilson.Hometown: Arlington, VA
Undergraduate College: The College of William and Mary in Virginia
Undergraduate Major: East Asian Studies and Chinese Language and Literature
Area of Interest: Interpretation
Interests: foreign languages and cultures, martial arts, movies

My interest in East Asian languages and cultures came from my father’s international travel while I was young, as well as, my interest in martial arts. As a freshman in 2002, I started studying Chinese which led to a 2004 six month stay in Beijing.

My junior year I was made aware of the Chinese Flagship Program here at OSU when my friend was accepted to the program. One of my teachers at William and Mary was also associated with the program and I realized it was a great opportunity to expand my Chinese ability. What attracted me most was that everything in the curriculum is taught in Chinese. My experience is not unlike many other undergraduate Chinese majors, that is, besides Chinese language courses, everything else, e.g., history, culture, literature, was taught in English. I felt the only way to improve on my Chinese ability would be to join a program like this where the students are in as close to an immersion setting as possible.

Jared Psigoda

Learn more about Jared from his LinkedIn Profile.

Joshua Lotz

Joshua Lotz.Hometown: Newark, DE
Undergraduate College: The Ohio State University
Undergraduate Major: Biochemistry
Area of Interest: Medicine
Interests: Chinese Medicine, Botany, Medical Anthropology

While studying abroad in Beijing in 2003, I became very interested in Traditional Chinese Medicine and was intrigued by how it seemed to be an integral part of the modern Chinese medical system. In 2004, I had the opportunity to travel to Qinghai Province to teach English. While there, I was able to study Tibetan Medicine with a traditional Tibetan doctor and once again was surprised by how this ancient medical system was actual the main source of medical care for Tibetans in the rural areas of Qinghai Province. Later that year, I returned to the US pursue an undergraduate degree in Biochemistry with a concentration on medicinal plant chemistry.

I joined the Chinese Flagship Program in 2006 and am currently pursuing a combined undergraduate and graduate degree. After graduation from the Flagship Program, I plan to pursue a career in medicine with a focus in international public health. The Chinese Flagship Program at OSU, which allows me to combine my interests in medicine and Chinese language, has been the perfect academic program to prepare me for this future career.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Joshua's Graduate Thesis was A discussion of the role of Chinese Medicine in the modern health care system.
Learn more about Joshua from his LinkedIn Profile.

Katherine Szewczyk

Katherine Szewczyk.Hometown: St Louis, MO
Undergraduate College: University of Notre Dame
Undergraduate Major: Art Studio
Area of Interest: Sino-Russian Relations
Interests: foreign languages and cultures, fine arts, reading

I began studying Chinese at the University of Notre Dame as a sophomore. After graduating in 2004, I moved to Liaoning province, where I taught English for one year at a technical college. My experiences in Liaoning helped to broaden my interest in Chinese as a language to Chinese as a culture. After leaving Liaoning, I moved to Shanghai, where I worked in a Taiwanese export company. I enrolled in the Chinese Flagship Program in 2006.

My original interest in the Chinese Flagship Program was due to the program’s focus on the cultural knowledge that is necessary in addition to language skills in order to successfully interact in another culture. The idea of cultural exchange is also what drew me to Sino-Russian relations, which is my thesis domain area. I have in the past been involved with promoting educational and cultural exchange in China and the United States and would like to combine my interests in languages and the Arts to continue to pursue international education/culture exchange at a more advanced level.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Keith Cunningham

Matthew Garner

Matthew Garner.Hometown: Tucson, AZ
Undergraduate College: The University of the Pacific
Undergraduate Major: International Relations/Chinese
Domain Area: International Trade and Finance
Interests: China-Africa relations, Japan-China-Korea regional trade

I studied abroad in Japan in high school and upon entering college decided to move into Chinese. At a time when it is almost impossible to turn around and not see an article about China, it seemed almost like a necessity. I studied in Nanjing during my undergraduate career and was brought in by the personal and intellectual challenges that every day brought. Understanding Chinese and China in the world has given me a new perspective on how the world operates and is interconnected.

I joined the flagship in 2006 with a concentration in international trade and finance. I wanted to gain practical knowledge of Chinese business culture, high-level trade technical terms and negotiating practices in order to be at the core of daily-increasing US-East Asia economic integration in the new century.

Chinese Resume [doc]
English Resume [doc]

Learn more about Matthew from his LinkedIn Profile.

Nathan Saettel

Patrick Longenbaker

Patrick Longenbaker.Hometown: Westerville, OH
Undergraduate College: University of Notre Dame
Undergraduate Major: Chinese and Political Science
Area of Interest: Chinese Intellectual Property Rights
Interests: Chinese history, politics, and film

 

Learn more about Patrick from his LinkedIn Profile.

 

Seth Warren

Hometown: Providence, Rhode Island
Undergraduate College: Wesleyan University
Undergraduate Major: College of Social Sciences
Domain Area: Chinese Media
Interests: Current Chinese cinema, tennis, Confucianism, Chinese dialects

While studying in Beijing in 2004, I was struck by the autonomy of some of my Chinese friends. For example, I often went to coffeehouses with Chinese college students and watched banned Chinese films. In 2005, I returned to the US and wrote a thesis which investigated how the rise in the standard of living in urban China has allowed for new levels of personal autonomy. After graduating from college in 2006, I entered the OSU Chinese Flagship Program, where I am currently continuing my study of Chinese language and society. I am excited to be returning to China in the summer of 2007, and I look forward to pursuing a career related to China.

Learn more about Seth from his LinkedIn Profile.


2005-06 OSU Chinese Flagship Program Team


Abigail Southerland

David Goodman

Holly Turner

Holly's Graduate Thesis was Examining the Concepts, Situation and Inner Contradictions of the Chinese Media Through the News Reporting of Sudden Incidents in 2008.

Jonas Shen

Learn more about Jonas from his LinkedIn Profile.

Julie Starr

Lisa Hopkins


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