alumni

Lauren Katalinich
“Being white” is not something I really think about on a daily basis and, like a lot of people, talking about race makes me cringe just a little bit. But once in China I soon realized that my entire experience would be shaped by this part of my identity that I have rarely been concerned with- the fact that I was white. And not only white, but 5 foot 9'' with sandy blonde hair and blue eyes.

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Chengdu
Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China. The Country of Heaven. The Garden City. Land of Abundance. Sounds like an alright place to spend six months to me. I hardly knew what to expect when I arrived in Chengdu, city of 11 million people, after my month-long orientation in the beautifully rural Guilin (think blue skies and Mario World-like mountains). I left early one clear, hot August morning by train and arrived 27 hours later, sweaty and tired at Chengdu Dong Train Station. Talk about an imposing introduction. It opened just three months earlier and still smelled uncommonly like a new pair of shoes. Passengers leaving the train face a mountain of stairs followed by stark white and cavernous rooms seemingly designed to maximize required walking distance or possibly to accommodate the entire population of China should they all decide to vacation here at the same time. I would soon discover that Chengdu Dong Station wasn’t the only building that smelled like new shoes in this city and is, in fact, a perfect introduction to the desired feel of modern Chengdu -- bright, new, grandiose and ever-so-slightly extravagant.

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As Peace Corps commemorates 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world, Iowa City residents will have the unique opportunity to hear first-hand how one person can help make a difference, both at home and abroad, at this community event on Monday, August 15, 2011, at the Iowa City Public Library.

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Joe Bookman and D. Jesse Damazo, two graduate students from the University of Iowa, were honored Thursday when the Cannes Film Festival announced their Official Selection for 2011. Bookman and Damazo’s film, The Agony and Sweat of the Human Spirit, was selected from more than 1500 entries to screen at this year’s Cinéfondation, the student film competition at Cannes.

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Five University of Iowa alumni will travel across the globe to conduct research or teach English as Fulbright fellows in 2009-10.

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