FIU's Asian Studies Program Newsletter 2016-2017

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7-Year Program Review


Faculty News


Student News


Asian Studies Events


Graduation Announcements 52-53

Grant & Outreach

Florida International University

2016– 2017 S T E V E N J. G R E E N S C H O O L O F I N T E R N A T I O N A L A N D P U B L I C A F F A I R S

2016-2017 Highlights

Japanese Language Proficiency Test @ FIU December 3, 2017 Click here for more info!



DR. QING LAI Assistant Professor Global & Sociocultural Studies / Asian Studies

DR. STEVEN HEINE Professor and Director Asian Studies

CLAUDIA LAU Adjunct Instructor Asian Studies

DR. TOM BRESLIN Professor International Relations

MARCELA LOPEZ BRAVO Adjunct Instructor Asian Studies

DR. LI MA Senior Instructor Asian Studies Modern Languages

DR. RAE CHOI Assistant Professor Global & Sociocultural Studies / Asian Studies

NAOKO KOMURA Senior Instructor Asian Studies Modern Languages

DR. MATTHEW MARR Associate Professor Global & Sociocultural Studies / Asian Studies

DR. AMY BLISS MARSHALL Assistant Professor History / Asian Studies

MASAKO KUBOTA Adjunct Instructor Asian Studies Modern Languages


DR. ASUKA MASHAV Dir. of Language Programs, Senior Japanese Instructor Asian Studies

MARIA SOL ECHARREN Senior Program Coordinator Asian Studies

DR. ERIC MESSERSMITH Lecturer Asian Studies

MICHAELA PROSTAK Program Assistant Asian Studies

DR. STEVEN VOSE Assistant Professor Religious Studies


Teaching Assistant Asian Studies

DR. SHENGGAO WANG Chinese Language & Culture Instructor Asian Studies Modern Languages

LISA NIVEN Teaching Assistant Asian Studies

BIANCA TRIFOI Teaching Assistant Asian Studies

DR. LIDU YI Assistant Professor Art & Art History

ASHLEY WEBB Digital Assistant Asian Studies

DR. JULIE ZENG Associate Professor International Relations


A s i a n St u d i e s 7 - Ye a


sian Studies went through it’s seven-year statemandated Program Review process. Consultant Dr. Morten Schlütter from the University of Iowa met with 35 faculty, administrational staff and students, in addition to giving a lecture on campus, titled "Chinese Religion and Society.”

Regarding the program, Dr. Morten Dr. Morten Schlütter stated that it has been “highly Schlütter successful for more than a decade in developing strong interdisciplinary undergraduate and graduate academic programs, under the accomplished leadership of Steven Heine. Dr. Heine has been remarkably effective in getting external grant support for the ASP and has been able to expand the number of faculty teaching in the interdisciplinary program considerably, along with carrying out a number of scholarly and community engagement activities that has greatly raised the profile of the program.”


r Program Review ACADEMIC GOALS FOR ASIAN STUDIES The main suggestions made by Dr. Schlütter assure the continued success and viability of Asian Studies as follows: Primarily, it was recommended that the program replace the position in Japanese Literature, while also hiring a full-time Korean language instructor as well as a new tenure-track position in an area of Chinese Humanities, especially in History. Furthermore, another consideration for the overall growth of the program is to bring it to departmental status. Lastly, Dr. Schlütter suggested creating a plan for the transitioning of ASP leadership while also considering hiring faculty with South Asia expertise.

From left to right: Maria Sol Echarren, Dr. Steven Heine, Dr. Morten Schlütter, Michaela Prostak, Elisa Dominguez, Marcela Lopez-Bravo, Norbis Sanchez, Phillip Guerreiro and Katrina Ankrum. 55

Dr. Kiyoteru Tsutsui

Dr. Yuki Miyamoto


Dr. Matthew Marr


n March 10, 2017 , the Southern Japan Seminar (SJS) was held at FIU thanks to the support of the Japan Foundation —Center for Global Partnership grant received by Dr. Matthew Marr for a special project titled, “Marginalization and Resistance in Global Japan,” which was the theme for this year. SJS promotes the research and educational activities of Japan-related scholars in the Southeastern United States. It also fosters critical inquiry, multi -disciplinary discussion, and the dissemination of knowledge, concerning all Japan-related topics, both theoretical and practical. This year, SJS was held with opening remarks by Dr. Steven Heine. As usual, there was an outstanding turnout of students and faculty for the event. The presentations, in order of appearance, were:

Dr. Kiyoteru Tsutsui, University of Michigan Department of Sociology “Rights Make Might: Global Human Rights and Minority Social Movements in Japan” Dr. Yuki Miyamoto, DePaul University Department of Religious Studies “Division of Gender: The Irradiated Body in Popular Accounts” Dr. Matthew D. Marr, Florida International University Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies Kakekomidera (Temples of Refuge): Japan’s Declining Day Labor Districts’ Potential as Neighborhoods Promoting Human Security”


Exploring East Asia: Virtual Realit y Travel Course online

“Exploring East Asia: Virtual Reality Travel,� a new online class centered on virtual reality offered through Asian Studies, is the first course of its kind at FIU. For students who may not be able to afford study abroad trips, they now have a chance to experience East Asia like never before using materials like VR goggles in the classroom. Adjunct Instructor Marcela Lopez-Bravo designed the course and taught it this past summer. Prof. Lopez Bravo also developed a new Japanese Spirituality course for this Fall 2017 as a virtual reality class! This article was featured on FIU News, please click here to read it.

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J a pa n I m m e r s i o n Day

On December 12, 2017, the Association of Florida Teachers of Japanese (AFTJ) celebrated another Japan Immersion Day on campus, in conjunction with Modern Languages and Asian Studies, as an educational and cultural outreach event that consists of performances and workshops, where students can learn about different aspects of Japanese culture and engage firsthand with a wide variety of Japanese arts. This year it included workshops on origami, jewelry making, sushi, kabuki, Kimono demo, tea ceremony, martial arts, Sumie (Japanese brush painting), calligraphy, anime, video games, and Hachimaki.

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C h i n e s e N e w Ye a r C e l e b r at i o n ć˜ĽčŠ‚ This was the third year of a new tradition to celebrate the Chinese New Year at FIU. The whole Chinese community of South Florida was invited to participate. The event included various dance and music performances, as well as traditional Chinese food.

2017 marked the Year of the Rooster, with this symbol as a blend of righteousness, justice, and logistical efficiency. Roosters are crowing and sounding the alarm for us to get alert and aware.

Special thanks to Dr. Shenggao Wang and the Chinese Club for mak possible! Co-sponsored by the Asian Studies Program, Department o guages, and Chinese Students and Scholars Association at

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king this event of Modern LanFIU.

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Dr. Matthew Marr, Associate Professor of Sociology, published his article “Urban Welfare Regimes, Organizational Cultures, and StaffClient Tie Activation: A Comparison of Transitional Housing Programs in Los Angeles and Tokyo,” in the Journal of Urban Affairs, 38 (2):214-235. Furthermore, Dr. Marr and Dr. Heine applied for a major grant with Center for Global Partnership (CGP): US-Japan Service Hub Network for $120,000.00; Dr. Marr received a CGP grant of $ 2,387.00 to support two speakers for a policy panel at FIU’s annual Southern Japan Seminar (SJS), titled “Marginalization and Resistance in Global Japan.”

Dr. Amy Bliss Marshall, Assistant Professor of Japanese History, is currently working on two projects. Creating Mass Culture in Japan (completed book manuscript – under contract), is a cultural history that explains the birth of mass culture in Japan, tracing its origins to two family magazines of the Interwar years (1918-1937). Freewheeling in Japan: Bicycles & the History of Leisure (book manuscript in process), tracks the history of the bicycle in 19th and 20th century Japan as means for exploring larger social and cultural trends related to discourses of leisure as both concept and embodied practice.

Masako Kubota, Japanese Instructor, led the FIU Honors College Study Abroad program Japan this past Summer 2017. It included ten days each in Tokyo, Sapporo, and Akan Kotan (an Ainu village). The trip focused on reciprocity and sustainable communities and cultures in Japan. Kubota Sensei led her students to experience traditional Ainu society and culture first-hand. Students engaged in various activities, including Kimono ritual ceremonies, typical dance and spiritual stories that celebrate Ainu language and culture. Click here to read more about this enriching opportunity and learn the Ainu greeting, “IRANKARAPTE.” 12 12

Dr. Steven M. Vose, Bhagwan Mahavir Assistant Professor of Jain Studies and Director, Jain Studies Program, published his article “Jain Uses of Citrakāvya and Multiple-Language Hymns in Late Medieval India: Situating the Laghukāvya hymns of Jinaprabhasūri in the ‘Assembly of Poets'” in the International Journal of Hindu Studies 20(3): 309-337. He also gave the Roop Lal Jain Memorial Lecture at the University of Toronto on Feb. 16, 2017. The title of his talk was, “Rājacandra, the Modern Jain: Locating ‘Modernity’ and ‘Tradition’ in the Biography and Works of a Late NineteenthCentury Jain Renegade.”

Dr. Lidu Yi, Assistant Professor of Chinese Art & Art History, completed a new monograph to be published with Routledge later this year on Chinese Buddhist cave art titled Yungang: Art, History, Archaeology, Liturgy. More information can be found here. Dr. Yi has been teaching courses in Contemporary Chinese Art as well as Buddhist Art of China & Japan.

Dr. Mitzi Carter, Instructor in Global and Sociocultural Studies, recently published an article titled, “Routing, Repeating, and Hacking Mixed Race in Okinawa” in the Hapa Japan: Identities and Representations this year and mentioned by the New York Times on March 11, 2017. Dr. Carter will be teaching courses for both the Department of Global & Sociocultural Studies as well as the Asian Studies in the upcoming academic year.

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Dr. Shenggao Wang Dr. Shenggao Wang, Chinese Language and Culture Instructor, was elected the next president of the Board of Directors of Chinese Language Teachers Association - Florida Chapter. He worked as a substitute coordinator for the Chinese Language and Culture Program, which included designing and editing promotional materials as well as advising students, writing recommendation letters for seven students and aiding two in obtaining Chinese Government Scholarships. He also served as a direct supervisor for a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant as well as the faculty advisor for the Chinese Club. Dr. Wang has diligently helped with several events at FIU.

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Dr. Shenggao Wang (far right) led the Chinese Speech & Skit Contest at FIU on April 10, 2017.

Dr. Shenggao Wang and Dr. Li Ma

Over the past year, Dr. Wang has helped organize such successful events as the Chinese New Year, the weekly Chinese Corner meet-up, and the annual FIU Chinese Speech and Skit Contest, which attracts language learners of all levels from different schools in South Florida. The Chinese New Year, an annual event, is attended by students, faculty, staff, and members of the local Chinese community. Dr. Wang published an article titled “Functional perspective of Chinese learners’ language use on social media” in D. Xu, J. Da, S. Liu (Eds.), Proceedings of the 9th International Conference and Workshops on Technology and Chinese Language Teaching (TCLT9) in the 21st Century (pp.313-323), University of Macau. He also has a manuscript in progress titled “Students’ perspective of integrating WeChat into Chinese language learning.” 15 15


r. Steven Heine has published over 32 books over his extensive career. Below are some reviews of his most recent book, Chan Rhetoric of Uncertainty in the Blue Cliff Record: Sharpening a Sword at the Dragon Gate: "The commentary by Heine has extensive discussion on difficult points, including irony and literary style in general, gives Chinese text with the translation fragments and uses the Chinese pinyin standard for transliteration. It is invaluable in decoding the meaning of some of the koans and commentary of the Blue Cliff Record although it does only cover a relatively small part the whole text."--Nan Tien Institute . "The work of author Steve Heine is a study focusing on, but not limited to, the Blue Cliff Record. By placing the Blue Cliff Record into an extended historical framework, Heine provides perspicacious analysis on the commentary tradition of Chan Buddhism... Heine offers a more holistic study on the Blue Cliff Record in comparison with other academic works focusing on the same topic. The great value of Heine's work is its unique vision, and the angle of seeing and addressing problems... All in all, Heine's innovative interpretations of the Blue Cliff Record will benefit scholars studying the fields of religion, literature, philosophy, and history."--Reading Religion 16 16

Dr. Steven Heine gave a lecture titled “How to research premodern and modern Japanese culture” for Dr. Hitomi Yoshio’s class at Waseada University in May 2017

Dr. Yoshio and Dr. Heine

Dr. Heine in Japan 17 17

Our Jewish Troubadours: Bob Dylan and Le By Dr. Steven Heine Professor and Director Asian Studies Our Jewish Troubadours celebrated the achievements in musical and lyrical expressions of two outstanding Jewish singer-songwriters, Bob Dylan, who was the 2016 Nobel Laureate for Literature, and Leonard Cohen, who unfortunately died at age 82 just a few weeks after the prize awarded to his close friend was announced. The recent juxtaposition of triumph and tragedy highlighted that, even though both figures actively explored other religious traditions, including Christianity and Zen Buddhism, they each have acknowledged and cultivated key aspects of Jewish identity. As the Tel Aviv University Museum’s current exhibit on Dylan points out, “It is difficult to think of a Jewish musician who has had a greater influence on 20th century culture than Bob Dylan. Dylan was one of the greatest American poets, the voice of an entire generation.” Similarly, a memorial article in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz noted, “Leonard

Cohen was one of the most explicitly Jewish popular songwriters since the ancient King David, whose Psalms he expertly imitated over a five-decade career.” When studied carefully, it becomes clear that the impact of Judaic theology and ritual eclipses the seemingly secular nature of the compositions of Dylan and Cohen. The two events, held on April 6 at the Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU and on April 7 at the Green School Gallery, featured introductory remarks by Distinguished Professor and Jewish Museum Academic Director Tudor Parfitt in addition to lectures by Professor Steven Heine, and Professor Elliott R. Wolfson, the Marsha and Jay Glazer Endowed Chair in Jewish Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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To view event a Museum FIU, c

onard Cohen - Celebration of their Songs

w video of the at the Jewish m of Floridaclick here .

In addition, Aaron Fishbein provided musical accompaniment featuring songs such as Dylan’s “Forever Young” and “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” plus Cohen’s “Who By Fire” and “Hallelujah.” Both events were well attended by enthusiastic crowds, who learned the deeper meaning of these and other tunes. Following Parfitt’s comments regarding the historical background of medieval Hebrew poetry and song, Heine’s lecture titled “Bob Dylan’s Jewish Identity (or Maybe Not): A Simple Twist of Faith” examined the way the singer has identified himself with the Biblical Prophets, who spoke out forcefully about the corruption and hypocrisy of society and articulated the need for every person to take responsibility to develop their moral character in order to reach a state of release and redemption. Next, Wolfson in “Crown of Darkness and Light: Leonard Cohen's Erotic Despair and the Jewish Mystical Tradition” discussed how Jewish mystical or Kabbalistic influences led 17 19

Cohen to a worldview in which the overcoming of apparent futility and hopelessness is continually fueled by an embracing of the interplay of God’s ability to reveal while at the same time concealing divine attributes. Sponsors for “Our Jewish Troubadours” included the Green School, the Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU, the Global Jewish Studies Program, the Asian Studies Program and the Religious Studies Department.

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he first new book by Dr. Heine, From Chinese Chan to Japanese Zen, provides a survey and critical investigation of the remarkable century from 1225 to 1325, during which the transformation of the Chinese Chan school into the Japanese Zen sect was successfully completed. The cycle of transfer began with a handful of Japanese pilgrims traveling to China, including Eisai, Dōgen, and Enni, in order to discover authentic Buddhism. They quickly learned that Chan, with the strong support of the secular elite, was well organized in terms of the intricate teaching techniques of various temple lineages. After receiving Dharma transmission through face-to-face meetings with prominent Chinese teachers, the Japanese monks returned with many spiritual resources. Foreign rituals and customs met with resistance, so by the end of the thirteenth century it was difficult to imagine the success Zen would soon achieve. Following the arrival of a series of émigré monks, who gained the strong support of the shoguns for their continental teachings, Zen

became the mainstream religious tradition in Japan. The transmission culminated in the 1320s when prominent leaders Daitō and Musō learned enough Chinese to overcome challenges from other sects with their Zen methods. The book examines the transcultural conundrum: how did Zen, which started half a millennium earlier as a mystical utopian cult primarily for reclusive monks who withdrew from society, gain a broad following among influential lay followers in both countries? It answers this question by developing a focus on the main mythical elements that contributed to the overall effectiveness of this transition, especially the Legend of Living Buddhas. Dr. Heine also published Zen and Material Culture, co-edited with Pamela Winfield, which includes his article on the role of sticks and staffs as symbols of Zen enlightenment. Other articles deal with beads, bowls, robes and rags. Heine and Winfield will be speaking at Japan Society in New York this October 2017 and will also publish an interview about the book in a new issue of Sacred Matters.

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Congratulations to the recipients of the Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs Awards! The awardees are shown above, with Dr. Heine (center), from left to right: Graduate Award of Service Excellence Lisa Niven Graduate Award of Best Thesis Bianca Trifoi Undergraduate Award of Academic Excellence Samuel Cohen Undergraduate Award of Academic Excellence Kevin Kilcoyne

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Featured Student Accomplishment Margarita Rentis, “Margi”, was the first student in South Florida (and FIU) to receive the U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarship for Japanese, one of the most competitive scholarships and prestigious language programs. She spent the summer studying advanced Japanese at the University of Shiga, in Hikone.

桃李满天下 r. Mali was reminded of this quote when he saw the picture of Dr. Heine and the Spring SIPA Awardees. It can be translated as: “Students like bright peaches and plums spreading

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Katrina Ankrum is an Asian Studies M.A student who worked this summer with Dr. Heine in compiling commentaries on Dōgen’s Shōbōgenzō (正法眼蔵) and assisted with Chinese & Japanese translations in relation to her M.A. thesis. This project will appear as a special article in the 2017 issue of Japan Studies Review.

Zenel Garcia is part of the Asian Studies MA/PhD in International Relations program. He went to Hong Kong and Seoul in June 2017 to present his research on China and Eurasia at the International Studies Association International and AAS-in-Asia conferences.

Arabella Jones is a student in the International Relations BA/Asian Studies Second Major, with Japanese and AGLA Certificates. She studied abroad with the Honors College over the summer of 2017 in Tokyo and Hokkaido.

Chantelle Mnayariji is pursuing an Asian Studies Certificate and studied abroad in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand with the Honors College over the summer of 2017 researching American Influence in South East Asia.

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Lisa Niven is an Asian Studies graduate student slated for summer 2017 graduation. She conducted research in Japan for her Master’s Essay “The Multi-Cultured Japanese Project: A Look Into the Life Experiences of Multi-Cultured Japanese” People Inside and Outside of Japan”

Margarita Rentis is a dual degree student in International Business & Management and Japanese Area Studies Major. She travelled this June-August 2017 to Hikone, Japan to attend Shiga University for an intensive Japanese language program.

Adriana V. Schiavo is pursuing an Asian Studies BA, and English as a Second Major. She studied abroad with the FIU Intensive Language and Culture program in Kyoto during this summer.

Ashley Webb is an Asian Studies MA student who went to research in South Korea for her Master’s Essay “The Impact of Beauty Culture in South Korea: A Society Geared Toward Physical Appearance.”

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FIU Honors Students studied abroad in Japan with Instructor Masako Kubota.

Vida Garcia, Asian Studies Minor and Asian Globalization and Latin America Certificate, studied abroad at Hanyang University, in Seoul, South Korea.

Denzel Haywood Alvarado, after completion of the Asian Studies Honors B.A., found employment in the US Field Manager for a company called Set in China.

Nicole Consuegra and Mia Plagmann have received the Chinese Government Scholarship for studying in China for one or more years.



2016 AFTJ Bento Contest Congratulations to all the students who received honors from the Japanese National Honor Society! 1st Place: Alexus Raymond (FIU) 2nd Place: Wei Lin (USF) For more information about the Association of Florida Japanese Teachers of Japanese (AFTJ), please visit their website.

Alexus Raymond’s obento

J apanese Calligraphy at FIU Students can now take JPN3000 Japanese Calligraphy course starting this upcoming Fall 2017, which was previously offered as a Special Topics course. FIU Japan Club also held a “Calligraphy Day” event, posted on their RoarSync.

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2017 Recipient

Eshrat Nikrooye-Asli Runner-up: Jana Nudelman


he Omar K. Carrion Scholarship for Asian Studies was established through a $50,000 gift made by Hilda and Fernando Carrion, parents of Omar Carrion, as an endowment memorializing their son who passed away in 2013. Omar was a bright student. He graduated (From left to right) Eshrat Nikrooye-Asli, Dr. Steven Heine, high school in 2003 and immediateand Jana Nudelman ly started classes at FIU. He grew a love for Japan and pursued his bachelor’s in Asian Studies. He gained new friends and experiences, like teaching English to students in Japan. On March 2, 2013, Omar, who was on his way to play baseball with friends at Tropical Park, was hit by a drunk/drugged driver. He was killed instantly. His family misses him every day and hope this scholarship will inspire others to pursue their dreams no matter the obstacles. The 2017 Recipient is Eshrat Nikrooye-Asli, an outstanding student majoring in Asian Studies, International Relations & Political Science, who recently was given a prestigious internship in China this Fall semester. As a runner-up this year, we separately awarded another very accomplished student in the program, Jana Nudelman, who also received the Chinese Government Scholarship. Past Recipients: Geri Ross, 2015 Geri was accepted into the 2017 JET Program

Nicole Consuegra, 2016 Nicole is applying to universities in Taiwan for her Masters 28

Welcome to Asia @ FIU The Asian Studies Graduate Student Organization (A.S.G.S.O.) in conjunction with the Japan club, held a welcoming event in the GC Pit area to start the semester as a way to showcase some of the amazing ways students can get involved on campus and get them connected to all clubs and program opportunities related to Asia. It was a fun way for new and continuing students to network the same interests, including clubs, study abroad opportunities, art, games, and prizes.



he Asian Studies Graduate Student Organization promotes Asian Studies and all it has to offer within FIU and beyond. The organization is dedicated to educating the student body (of all cultures) about Asian contemporary issues, history, and culture, through creative and engaging activities. In addition, the Asian Studies GSO strives to bring together the Asian community through educational and social activities. Finally, ASGSO encourages dedicated, educated, and well-rounded members to apply their unique knowledge, talents and acquired skills for the benefit of the greater social/global community. In addition to many dedicated graduate student and alumni members, and with the guidance and support of the Asian Studies department, ASGSO is led by: President: Lisa Niven Vice President: Katrina Ankrum Treasurer: Franklin Hernandez/Ashley Webb CSO Rep: Michaela Prostak

Current students and alumni can join via RoarSync! Like us on Facebook to stay up-to-date! 30


very year, the Asian Studies GSO hosts mini-conferences discussing related topics in education, the industry, and various programs that help FIU students get ahead in the world wherever they decide to go after graduation. It also organizes cultural events, often in conjunction with other groups or departments on campus to highlight the vast array of cultures within Asia. Over the past year, the ASGSO has organized or helped with over 20 events, collaborating with faculty, other student organizations, and the community.


Ashley Webb, first-year M.A. student, attended th

2017 Summer Session Regular Program at the Korea Language Education Center of Seoul National Univers ty this Summer 2017. While there, she completed an i tensive language training and conducted research f her Master’s essay titled “The Impact of Beauty Cultu in South Korea: A Society Geared Toward Physical A pearance.” During her stay in Korea, she won the 13 Korean Speech Contest Popularity Award.

Bianca Trifoi, Spring 2017 graduate, went back to South Korea to complete an intensive language program at the prestigious Seoul National University. She will begin teaching at Pagoda Academy in Seoul in September.

Elisa Dominguez, Fall 2016 M.A. graduate, has since traveled to Japan and South Korea to enhance what she learned as an M.A. student. She also continued her research on Chinatowns by visiting San Francisco. In the Fall 2017 she will be an Instructor for First Year Experience here at FIU.

Join the Asian Studies Graduate Student Organization 34 via RoarSync or Facebook to meet other grad student 32

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Lisa Niven, Summer 2017 graduate, conducted research in California and throughout Japan for her Masters essay titled “The Multi-Cultured Japanese Project: A Look Into the Life Experiences of Multi-Cultured Japanese People Inside and Outside of Japan.�

George Pearson, a first year M.A. student, organized an event to showcase his photographic work done in Japan. The exhibition was held in the FIU GC Gallery from April 8-20th, 2017.

Rayna Rusenko,

MA in Asian Studies (2016) and current PhD candidate in GSS, she contributed knowledge of conditions surrounding homelessness in Malaysia to a research exchange organized by the Institute on Global Homelessness (IGH) and the India Homeless Resource Network (IHRN), designed to explore homelessness in developing contexts globally. In 2017, she was awarded a Japanese Studies Fellowship by Japan Foundation and an NSF DDRI grant to support her dissertation fieldwork in Tokyo & Kuala Lumpur. 33 33

Lyanne Maldonado After graduating in 2015 with a B.A. Asian Studies and a Japanese Studies Certificate, Lyanne moved to Washington D.C where she landed an internship in Capitol Hill working for a Congressman. Six months later, she started a job at CSRA, a cybersecurity company who has been contracted by the Department of Homeland Security. She works with the Cybersecurity and Communications Office alongside DHS employees handling communications and external affairs. “Explore all of your interests, they may lead you to many different paths.”

Rebecca Richko Rebecca started working in the JET Programme in August 2016 as an Assistant Language Teacher after finishing her M.A. in Asian Studies in the Sring 2016. She has now has been renewed for an additional year with JET, where she is currently teaching English at a high school in Kofu, the capital city of Yamanashi Prefecture. In addition to being actively involved in some of the internationally-geared activities at her school, her M.A. research is being published in this year’s issue of the Japan Studies Review. For Rebecca, the JET Programme has been an enlightening and wonderful experience thus far, and has allowed her to pursue her passion for travel, having had the opportunity to reach different parts of Japan as well as to South Korea, Thailand, Cambodia, Spain, and Portugal. 34

Jennifer Beaty (bottom left) After graduating with her M.A. in Asian Studies, Jennifer was accepted into the prestigious Urasenke Gakuen Professional College of Chado in Kyoto, Japan to continue her studies on Japanese Tea Ceremony.

Nicholas Roma Nicholas graduated in 2010 with a B.A. Asian Studies with Honors and a Japanese Studies Certificate. Afterwards, he moved to Japan to teach English. He is also pursuing a Masters there in TESOL.

Christian Deleveaux Christian graduated with a B.A. in Asian Studies and a Japanese Studies Certificate in 2010. Since leaving FIU he worked at the Bahamian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Then he went to China where he has resided for the last three years. For the last 18 months, he has been working for the Disney English program located in Shanghai.

Jennifer Garcia Jennifer completed the M.A. in Asian Studies in the Spring 2011, and taught English in Japan for two years after her graduation in the JET Programme. She then earned a second Masters in Visual and Digital Media in Spain where she also worked for the Education USA division of the U.S. Embassy in Madrid. She currently lives in in Brooklyn, NY, where she works for a production company in Manhattan. She also said, “I'm proud of the growth I've seen Asian Studies at FIU make since I graduated!� 35

Grace Taylor After graduating in 2009 with a B.A. in Asian Studies, she continued to pursue higher education. She has completed a second Master’s degree in English at North Carolina State University and presented a paper in Portland, Oregon at the national Conference on College Composition and Communication this past March 2017.

Maria M. Jamass As a Spring 2014 M.A. graduate, she has since worked as an English teacher in Spain, now studying Medieval Studies at the University of Exeter in the U.K. and plans to continue towards a Ph.D. in Hispanic Studies at the University of Birmingham

Julia C. Beabout Julia graduated with the M.A. in Asian Studies in the Summer 2013, but has been furthering her skills in Mandarin in China at the CET program in Harbin this past summer. She is currently working as President of Qiao Inc and has also presented her research at the 2017 Conference of the Chinese Studies Association of Australia. She recently visited the Asian Studies office and is pictured here with Dr. Steven Heine. 36

Carolina A. Peña

Kristina Loveman Krissy received the Asian Studies Graduate Certificate in the Spring 2014 upon completion of her M.A. After this, she worked at the University of South Florida in the Education Abroad Office as the Advisor for programs in Asia Pacifica for two years. She recently started a new position with the University of California Santa Cruz in the Global Engagement Office as a Study Abroad Advisor for Asia and Pacifica. “Take advantage of the opportunity to go abroad - it's the best time to go, and you won't regret it.”

As a B.A. graduate in Asian Studies from Fall 2010, Carolina says she is grateful for the opportunity of having been part of an organization dedicated to building mutual understanding between the U.S. and other countries, and recognizes her most important accomplishment was having her daughters who have kept her grounded during her studies. She currently works at an office where she is able to pursue her passions, which she cultivated during her studies at FIU and in the U.S. military.

Steve Rodoquino He completed the M.A. in Asian Studies back in Summer 2015. Since then, he has visited the Wing Tai Sin Temple Tian Tan Buddha while travelling in Hong King and has also continued volunteer work with the Ichimura Miami Japanese Garden.

Gabriela Romeu After finishing the M.A. in Asian Studies in the Spring 2013, Gabriela spent two years teaching English in Okinawa, Japan for the JET Programme. She then worked as International Program Coordinator for the College of Pharmacy at Nova Southeastern University. In July 2016, she returned to FIU to work for the Center for Leadership. 37


Welcome to Asia @ FIU The Asian Studies Graduate Students Organization (A.S.G.S.O.) in conjunction with the Japan club, held an event to learn, participate and enjoy all things related to Asia here at FIU.


Mid-Autumn Festival (中秋节)! Hosted by the FIU Chinese Club. This event held at FIU celebrated this festival with authentic Chinese food, music and casual discussion.


The Author of this year's Common Reading Book Selection, Yeonmi Park, presented her book In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl's Journey to Freedom, the harrowing story of her escape from North Korea as a child.


JET Program Application Workshop & Info Session given by Lauren Sorondo from the Consulate of Japan in Miami. Spirit of Ainu – Super Natural Environment of Kamuy. For this special event, seven Ainu artists, “Akan Kokin no Kai” travelled from Japan to perform traditional Ainu dances, songs and music using special Ainu instruments, such as Tonkori and Mukkuri.


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Alumni, Where Are They Now? (Asian Studies Career Workshop) Asian Studies alumni shared with current students on how they have used their degrees in the real world. Presentations by: Bryan Barber (2014 M.A. Alumni & PhD Student International Relations), Ian Verhine (2010 B.A. & 2012 M.A. Alumni, Japanese translator, Commercial & Academic), Umer Rahman (2013 M.A. Alumni, FIU Honors College Coordinator of Student Programs), Wendy Lo (2008 M.A. Alumni, Morikami Museum & Japanese Gardens, Curator of Education.

2nd Annual FIU Language Day - Celebrating languages at FIU!

Japan Immersion Day A great time to enjoy Japanese culture, meet other Japanese students, learn more about Japan, and more! Co-sponsored by the Association of Florida Teachers of Japanese (AFTJ), the Consulate General of Japan in Miami, the Department of Modern Languages, and Asian Studies.

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"The Origins of Christianity in Korea" - Lecture by Dr. Deberniere Janet Torrey, Professor of World Languages and Cultures from the University of Utah.


"Chinese Religion and Society" - Lecture by Dr. Morten Schlütter, Professor of Chinese Religion and Buddhist Studies from the University of Iowa.


Chinese New Year Celebration 2017 – Year of the Rooster: Organized by Asian Studies, Modern Languages, the Chinese Club and CSSA at FIU.

“Walking the Kiso Road” Take a trip to old Japan with William Scott Wilson as he travels the ancient Kiso Road, a legendary route that remains much the same today as it was hundreds of years ago.



ASGSO Workshop on Conferencing and Funding. Several graduate students presented and provided tips on academic conferences and resources available at FIU. Students are encouraged to apply for research funding via the Graduate and Professional Student Committee at







Southern Japan Seminar (SJS) - The theme this year was titled, “Marginalization and Resistance in Global Japan” and made possible by the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership (CGP ) Grant.

Japan at the Forefront of Emerging Issues: A Conversation with Fulbright Scholars on current challenges, women's empowerment, environmental law and corporate innovation. Sponsored by the Green School, the Asian Studies Program and the Consulate General of Japan in Miami.

Cool Japan @ FIU 2017 Several organizations and clubs came together to celebrate Japanese culture at FIU!

“Our Jewish Troubadours” - On April 6, 2017, Dr. Steven Heine and Dr. Elliott R. Wolfson came together to highlight the remarkable achievements of two outstanding Jewish singer-songwriters, 2016 Nobel Laureate for Literature Bob Dylan, and Leonard Cohen, who passed away a few weeks after the prize was announced. The event featured an introduction by Distinguished Prof. Tudor Parfitt and musical accompaniment by Aaron Fishbein.

Japanese Traditional Music - The Morikami Museum & Japanese Gardens held a Japanese traditional music education workshop at FIU. The event included professional musicians, 13-string koto player Dr. Joseph Gashō Amato and shakuhachi player Professor Christopher Yohmei, as well as a demonstration of the instruments by Dr. Minako Waseda.

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The 2017 JET Program Farewell Reception was hosted by the Consulate General of Japan in Miami. This year's group is one of our largest to teach in Japan. Various Florida JETAA board members were present, including Lauren Sorondo (President), Allan Mordetsky (Vice President), Kyle Litow (Secretary), Wendy Lo (South FL Region Rep.) and other JET alumni from Asian Studies at FIU, Gabriela Romeu and Bryan Barber.

Japan Exchange and Teaching Program Congratulations to the following FIU students who were accepted to the JET Program for 2017-2018: Alumni


auren Sorondo, JET Program Coordinator from the Consulate General of Japan in Miami, held an Information Session on September 12, 2016 to familiarize FIU students with the application process and answer any questions. Check the Asian Studies website for the next JET Information Session !

Jessica Gonzalez Geri Ross Rodrigo Rossie Undergraduate Students Kevin Kilcoyne Franz Leschhorn Andres Marrero

For more information about the JET Program, please visit their website. 42 42

FIU L anguage Day

The second Annual Language Day held was on November 28, 2016, promoting cultural diversity through language. Events included a round table discussion, meet & greet, trivia, and games. It was a fun day to share the languages you learn with your FIU family. Thank you to all the Asian Studies students who participated!

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Second Annual


ool Japan @ FIU was an event held in Spring 2017. The e was dedicated to celebrating Japanese traditional and pop culture. Students and community members joined togeth FIU’s campus for a day of fun and games, including a cos contest and raffle. Attendees sipped Japanese tea while enjoying taiko drum performa by Fushu Daiko and other traditional and popular music. Some of the er activities included trivia, video games, films and karaoke. There martial arts performances and demonstrations, specifically kendo an rate. Among the numerous craft making sessions, attendees could jo making bracelets, chopstick design, hachimaki, calligraphy and origam This was a major event hosted by the Asian Studies Program, J Club, Chinese Club, and Geek Culture Club. The event was also spons by Arkray, FujiFilm, Hisamitsu, iiiCareer, and Sony.

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l Co o l J a pa n @ F I U

event pular her at splay

ances e othwere d kaoin in mi. Japan sored

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Chinese Speech and Skit Contests

As in past years, the 10th Annual Florida International Chinese Speech & Skit Contest was a well-attended and highly successful event. The event was held on April 2, 2017 and organized by the Asian Studies Program and Modern Languages, Miami Dade College Confucius Institute, CLTA-FL, and the Chinese Club at FIU. Congratulations to the winners of this year’s contest! Thank you to all of the coordinators and judges of the Chinese Speech and Skit Contest for your hard work and congratulations on such a successful event! Chinese Speech & Skit Contest Winners Speech Level 2: 3rd Place – Jacob Foley

Japanese Traditional Music @ FIU


n June 20, 2017, the Morikami Museum & Japanese Garden held a special presentation at FIU on Japanese traditional music as part of a yearly educational program. Professional musicians like koto player Dr. Joseph Gashō Amato and shakuhachi player Professor Christopher Yohmei Blasdel gave a lecture on Japanese traditional musical instruments, particularly the 13-string koto and shakuhachi. The event included a demonstration of the instruments by Dr. Minako Waseda. 46 46

Ja pa nese Spe ech Co nte st Congratulations to the winners of the AFTJ 2016 Florida Statewide Japanese Speech Contest! Speech Level 1: 1st Place – Freddy Navarro Karaoke Video: 1st Place – Jeremy Mobley

Critical Language Scholarships Congratulations to the recipients of the U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholarships! Nicole Consuegra Chinese Suzhou, China Margarita Rentis Japanese Hikone, Japan Click here for the press release! For further information about the CLS Program or other exchange programs offered by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, please visit the CLS and Study Abroad websites.

Scholarship Recipients Congratulations to Fabian Perez on receiving the Freeman Foundation and the Institute of International Education’s Freeman-ASIA 2016 Award! Fabian will study of language and culture in China in summer 2016. Congratulations to Anna Seerey! Anna was awarded the Chinese Government Scholarship by the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Houston. Anna will spend one year for study abroad in China. 47 47

National Consortium for Teaching About Asia

The National Consortium for Teaching about Asia (NCTA) is a nationwide professional development program for K–12 teachers to encourage teaching and learning about Asia. NCTA offers an introduction to Asian culture, history, and society that demonstrates to teachers how to infuse Asian materials into their classrooms. This academic year 2016-2017 we held two successful seminars, seeing great enthusiasm from the local school teachers and putting their newly-learned skills to good use in their classrooms! The workshops are directed by Dr. Steven Heine with the assistance of Claudia Lau, an Asian Studies Adjunct Instructor. The main objective of the workshop is for teachers to understand Chinese cultural aspects, encouraging them to infuse Asian Studies into their curriculum through the use of Asian films and online resources. Furthermore, this knowledge can be applied to specific and original lesson plans for incorporation into each teacher’s educational portfolio. To apply for the next session, contact María Sol Echarren at, or visit

Ja A ti Fo va D st

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Click on the image on the left to see a video of Dr. Heine's book signing for the "Rhetoric of Uncertainty in the Blue Cliff Record: Sharpening a Sword at the Dragon Gate" at Books & Books on September 23, 2016.

Ja pa n Stu d ies Rev iew

apan Studies Review is a refereed journal published annually by the Southern Japan Seminar and Asian Studies at FIU. The 2017 issue (Volume XXI) features articles four articles and a special secion dedicated to a biographical essay on Sōtō Zen commentaries on Dōgen’s Shōbōgenzō and the ormation of the 95-Fascicle Honzan (Steven Heine and Katrina Ankrum). The articles consist of a ariety of topics, ranging from Zen Buddhism in the Twentieth Century in frame-stories from Daisetz Suzuki’s book in relation to Van de Wetering’s The Empty Mirror (Ben Van Overmeire), a tudy on Japan’s low birth rate and the role of women in contemporary Japan (Rebecca Richko), the employment challenges in Japan regarding age and gender issues (Shiho Futugami and Marilyn M. Helms), and an economical analysis of the United States-Japan automobile trade conflict of the 1980s. Two essays are also included in this issue: a discussion on the military government’s food policies in World War II Japan (Junko Baba) and a study on the Ocean Plain imagery of Gake no Ue no Ponyo (Cassandra Atherton). Finally, there are three reviews on books by authors Janice P. Nimura, Richard Reeves (Daniel A. Métraux) and Peter Cave (Yuichi Tamura).

Japan Studies Review Archive: For information on how to obtain a copy or to submit an article or book review, please contact our office at (305) 348-1914 or 49 49

Click below to join a club and become involved in the events and activities!

Aikido Club

Contact or FIU Aikido Facebook

Asian Studies Graduate Sign up via RoarSync! UndergradStudent Organization uates are welcome to join too! Asian Student Union Join their Facebook page Chinese Club Also join the Chinese Corner@FIU Go Club at FIU

Japan Club

Join via email at or Twitter Join via, Twitter or Wordpress, too!

Kendo Club Visit their site for more info! Korean Culture Club Visit their Facebook page Study Abroad Club @ FIU

Contact Office of Study Abroad or Facebook

Tae Kwon Do FIU Taekwondo Facebook Vietnamese Student Association Join their Facebook page For a full list of student organizations, please visit the Council for Student Organization’s website.

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Go Club at FIU

Geek Culture Club at the 2nd Welcome to Asia event organized by ASGSO

Taiko Performance at Morikami

“Through the Looking Glass: Mad Tea Party by the Geek Culture Club—October 28, 2016

ASGSO’s End of the Semester Soireé April 21, 2017 51 51

2016-2017 Asian Studies Graduates

CONGRATULATIONS to this year’s graduates of Asian Studies academic programs! MASTER OF ARTS IN ASIAN STUDIES Drayenko Barisa Elisa Dominguez

Lisa Niven Bianca Trifoi

BACHELOR OF ARTS IN ASIAN STUDIES Chelsea Bullard Amar Chaykin Yuchin Cheng Samuel Cohen Nicole Consuegra Ari Brandt Epstein Shelby Forrester Claudia Huarcaya Kevin Kilcoyne Saskia Leemcpherson Franz Leschhorn Sylvanna Loo

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Andres Marrero Nadine Matas Adrian Morales Maria Morales Omar Morillo Jorge De Silva Neto Maxsim Ousmanov Erica Phillips Charles Pun Anthony Rodriguez Edward Rodriguez Ai Suenaga Aaron Velazquez



Ida Caproon


Adrienne Ceballos

Bianca Trifoi

Nannette Boza

Jennifer Ching Daniel Dooling Sofia Edwards Sophia Hazza Jessica Hernandez Joseph Kendal Daniela Llaque Martin Meylach Priscila Omillion Emiko Perea Samantha Qyyum Christopher Rendon Jason Roberts

Gabriela Sanchez Vincent Taylor Thais Torquez



Amar Chaykin


Samuel Cohen

Krysten Berdini

Nicole Consuegra

Adrienne Ceballos

Sylvanna Loo

Yuchin Cheng

Maxsim Ousmanov

Auhida Chowdhury

Fabian Perez

Daniel Dooling

Emely Pietri

Shelby Forrester

Mia Plagmann

Joseph Kendal

Anthony Rodriguez

Franz Leschhorn

Diana Velasco

Sylvanna Loo Robin Mayrand

SOUTH & SOUTH- Stephanie Montes De EAST ASIAN Oca STUDIES Omar Morillo CERTIFICATE Maxsim Ousmanov

Jenesis Mena

Muhammad Mustafa Jorge Da Silva Neto Jorge Da Silva Neto Nasim Ul Ghani Edward Rodriguez Ai Suenaga



Nicole Cabral

Ryan Opsal

Natalie Lopez

Vincent Taylor Demetrius Villa Lydia Yan

Daniel Diaz Borja Hazza Lianne Perez

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IU’s Asian Studies Program Japan Foundation’s Institutional Program Support (IPS) Grant, which has lasted from 2013 until 2017, has successfully completed all the grant goals established under the collaborative project titled “The South Florida Partnership in Japanese Studies (SFPJS) Housed at FIU.” Overall, this grant has allowed the program to grow significantly in the knowledge of Japanese history and culture through developing an interdisciplinary curriculum and supporting a multi-institutional consortium for promoting research, teaching, and outreach. In the years of the grant, several achievements were completed in this project, including the staff expansion with a full-time faculty in Japanese History (Dr. Amy Bliss Marshall), enriching the curriculum in Japanese Area Studies, as well as the addition of several valuable library acquisitions and digital resources that were purchased for our FIU Library. Furthermore, Japan Foundation Grant Workshops were held every year to allow for the Study Tour participants to present their research completed in Japan. The grant also permitted the continuation of our annual peerreviewed journal, Japan Studies Review, out for publication at the beginning of Fall 2017. Finally, the grant allowed for several partners and institutions in South Florida to connect and share Japanese Studies to the community.

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he NEH Summer Institute titled “Tokyo High City and Low City” was held last summer at FIU. This grant project, led by Dr. Steven Heine and Dr. Hitomi Yoshio, provided an in-depth humanistic exploration of the literary, religious, and philosophical movements that have visibly—and invisibly—contributed to the construction of modern Japan. By providing a platform in each session for a focused yet flexible investigation into the markers of tradition and modernity in Japan’s capital city, we infused college teachers with new critical knowledge of diverse local and global perspectives on Japanese identity. The Institute was meant to inspire new thought on what it means to understand world civilizations from diverse geo-cultural perspectives. Some of the educators that participated in the seminar reported the following:

Lisa Brown, a newly admitted student for the MA in Asian Studies beginning this coming Fall 2017, remarked the following: “I was thrilled to be able to use material from the readings and lectures for my Fall course on the cultural history of Tokyo and other cities in Japan. I could not have taught the course without this information.” Helena Thevenot: “This summer institute has contributed greatly to my course planning and teaching and I will continue to use these materials in my teaching and research. It was a fabulous experience.” Yanfei Zhu: “I appreciate so very much all that has been accomplished in the summer institute, and how it has contributed to the professional development for all participants.” Patricia Welch: “Thank you again for your time and attention last month as part of the NEH summer institute on Tokyo. It was wonderful to be with such interesting people studying one of the world’s methods great mega cities. I very much enjoyed my time at FIU.”

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S F P J S Pa r t n e r s FIU’s Asian Studies Program received the Institutional Project Support Program Grant from the Japan Foundation for 2013-2017, for a collaborative project called "The South Florida Partnership in Japanese Studies (SFPJS) Housed at FIU." The SFPJS partners include Florida Atlantic University (FAU), the Morikami Museum & Japanese Gardens, and the Florida Delegation of the Southeast U.S./Japan Association (SEUS/Japan). The SFPJS also collaborates with outreach organizations including local community colleges, such as Miami-Dade College, in addition to the Association of Florida Teachers of Japanese, Miami Hoshuko, and the Japan Business Association of Miami..

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Ja pa nese L a nguage Proficie ncy Te st FIU hosted the 2016 Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) for the first time. Next Test Date: December 3, 2017 Click here for test site and registration information. Please visit the American Association for Teachers of Japanese website for general information about the JLPT.

Upcoming Events & News 2017-2018

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September 2016  JET Program Information Session  Welcome to Asia @ FIU  NCTA Seminar  Chan Rhetoric of Uncertainty in the Blue Cliff Record – Book Signing by Dr. Heine  Mid-Autumn Festival October 2016  Yeonmi Park: A North Korean Girl's Journey to Freedom  Chinese Film Screening Old Stone  Japan Film Festival  JET Program Application Workshop November 2016  Spirit of Ainu – Super Natural Environment of Kamuy  Alumni, Where are they now? (Asian Studies Career Workshop)  2nd Annual FIU Language Day  Japan Film Festival  ASGSO – End of Semester Movie Night and Karaoke December 2016  Japan Immersion Day January 2017  "The Origins of Christianity in Korea" - Lecture by Deberniere Janet Torrey  Welcome to Asia @ FIU

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February 2017  "Chinese Religion and Society" - Lecture by Dr. Morten Schlütter  Chinese New Year Celebration 2017 – Year of the Rooster  “Walking the Kiso Road” Lecture by William Scott Wilson  ASGSO Workshop on Conferencing and Funding March 2017  Southern Japan Seminar (SJS)  Buddha of the Celestial Gallery: The Art of Romio Shrestha  Japan at the Forefront of Emerging Issues: A Conversation with Japanese Fulbright Scholars  Cool Japan @ FIU 2017  ASGSO Move and Karaoke Night April 2017  10th Annual Florida International Chinese Speech and Skit Contest  Our Jewish Troubadours: Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen - Celebration of their Songs  Opening of: Ichi-go Ichi-e: Photographs of Kansai Japan 2013-2017  ASGSO Spring Soiree June 2017  Japanese Traditional Music—Special Presentation at FIU from Morikami Museum Japanese traditional music education program.  National Consortium for Teaching About Asia (NCTA) K-12 Summer Seminar Please be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date on news and upcoming events!

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ASIAN STUDIES PROGRAM Florida International University Modesto A. Maidique Campus Steven J Green SIPA Building, Room 505 11200 SW 8th Street Miami, FL 33199 Phone: (305) 348-1914 Email: STEVEN J GREEN SCHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS


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