Beijing Blues Girl

My educational background

I am a school junkie and have gone to school a little too long. Here is an overview of my long school history divided, like geological aeons, into early, middle and late.

Early Educational Years

I attended Blessed Sacrament School in Tallahassee, Florida from 2nd through 9th grades. I then went to Leon High School in the same town for my sophomore and junior years. When I attended Leon, "Dixie" was still played at school pep rallies and students vied to see who could leap to their feet first when the band started playing. Leon and I didn't get along. I understand Leon has changed a lot since those days, just as the rest of the South has. My niece and nephew, Mary Channing and Julian Bruce, attended Leon and enjoyed it.

For my senior year of high school, I attended Evanston Township High School--ETHS--in Evanston, Illinois. I loved it. I graduated as part of the school's largest class ever--about 5200 students. Being so huge, the high school was divided into four smaller schools--North, South, East and West. I was part of "South Hall." After graduation, I returned to the South to attend Florida Presbyterian College, now Eckerd College, in St. Petersburg. Later, I transferred to Florida State University in Tallahassee, where I earned a B.A. in religion (1979). My favorite professor was Larry Cunningham, who now teaches at Notre Dame. He was formerly a parish priest at the church I attended as a child. While a student at FSU, I went on the school's London Program, which my dad helped establish. I enjoyed seeing plays in the West End and film at the National Film Theatre. The London Program was one of the high points of my undergraduate experience.

Middle Educational Years

During the summer of 1980, I took an intensive Chinese language course at UC-Berkeley. In the summer of 1982, I also participated in an intensive Chinese language program, sponsored by Berkeley, that was held at Beijing Normal University. Interestingly, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner also studied at Beijing Normal ("Shi Da" in pinyin) that summer. He was on a program sponsored by Dartmouth College.

I then moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan, where I attended the University of Michigan. I eventually received an M.A. in Chinese Area Studies (1987) and an M.B.A. (1989) from U-M.

Later Educational Years

In addition to the above degrees, I also earned an M.S. in population health (2006) and an M.A. in journalism (2008) from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. At UW-Madison, I studied under Deborah Blum, a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer.

I came to the University of Florida to study documentary film making at the Documentary Institute. After one semester, I have decided that I am more talented with words than images. So, I will not complete the program. However, I am happy I have learned how to shoot and edit video and work with various multimedia programs.