Student Narratives

Sarah Ledbetter

My interest in Asian Studies developed in large part to my experience at Rollins, where I was first exposed to non-Western ideas, traditions, histories, and studies.  After taking Cultural Anthropology, I was committed to learning more about the people of the world, subsequently changing the focus of my studies from Math and Computer Science to Anthropology and Asian Studies.  My goal after graduation was to live abroad in Asia, and as luck would have it, I was accepted into the Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Program, through which I taught English in rural Japan for two years.  I have since returned to graduate school and am now completing a master’s degree in International Studies at the University of Washington in Seattle.  At UW, I have studied Japanese language, history, and society, taught courses on mixed identity and race, and am currently coordinating a study abroad program to the Philippines this summer.  My interest and study of Asia has truly affected the course of my life and has provided me with a more rounded understanding of people and the world at large, something that I believe is incredibly pertinent in our society today.