University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota


Great memories of Gopher sports. We were never a power house like Michigan or Ohio State, but we were so enthusiastic just being able to be a spoiler or coin the ax, or the Floyd of Rosedale. As if we won the Rose Bowl. It was sublimical at the same time, we built our allegiance to the state. To this day, I still follow Gopher sports on the internet, read my Star Tribune and read about Minnesota news. That's why it's always fun whenever we get to meet students, or other guests from the U. It's the chance to get caught up with my old self. That's never going to change. Go Gophers!

- Edwin Lee, Mechanical B.S., 1976

I enjoyed every minute at the University of Minnesota! Congratulations on China 100 celebration!

- Fei Yun Linda Wang, MBA, 2003

I met my wife at Centennial Hall at the U. Went to the Twin's games with my classmates in 1987 when they won the World Series. Learned to play softball in the Intramural League with my department mates. The ski trips with the other Hong Kong students at the U.

- Peter W. Lee, Chemistry Ph.D., 1986

Farvorite Memory: I met my husband at Centennial. I am from Tokyo, Japan. My husband is from Hong Kong.) Shocking Memory: I arrived in August. Got the first snow in September. (Locals all told me it was rare in September. I was panicking! Happened in 1985.) Inspired: Professor Jeffrey Broadbent in Sociology. I was very fortunate to be his R.A. He was doing great research on Japan.

- Reiko Nakaigawa Lee, Sociology M.A., 1987

I not only gained advanced knowledge and learned about modern technology, but deepened my knowledge of the United States, a great Western nation, and enhanced my friendship with its great people...My research on the ladybug made me the "ladybug lady" of the TwinCities...I was featured in the first Matrix television series about the university. I was then invited by schools and organizations to give talks about China...The days I spent at the University of Minnesota impressed me so deeply, I can never forget them.

(Source: The University of Minnesota 1945-2000 book)

- Qihui Zhai, 1981

Long story. I can type, speak, write in English or Chinese. Long story short - I am an undergrad graduate of the ALL department of the U of MN. I began studying Chinese via the-then East Asian Studies department at UMN. I am Minneapolis born. My first year of university studies I spent in Denmark, living with a family as a student. I subsequently spent 16 months traveling in Europe. I returned to (the USA, Minnesota, and) Minneapolis, returned to UMN and went into computer science studies. After about 2 years I switched my major to Chinese. I studied one school year of Chinese at UMN and went through the U to study at Nankai U in Tianjin China...

I later studied and lived many years in Taiwan. I currently teach Mandarin in the Twin Cities, and have been doing so since 2003. I usually return to China or Taiwan yearly. An aside. Whole other bit of the story...My parents brought me to study Japanese when I was 4 years old. . ~ Favorite teachers of mine, this lifetime, have been (the past) Professor Stephen Wong, and the wonderful Professor Ann Waltner!! I have stories on how these two teachers, amongst others at UMN and with Asian studies and History departments at UMN helped me on my growing path and want to learn more about Chinese language and culture !!

- Nicole Darcy 達妮, 1982-2008

I was elected to the Humphrey Institute's Curriculum Committee. There were 2 students and 6 faculties in the Committee. For the first time, in the matter of what got taught in the school, I was suprised that my words count as a student! I was able to express what I think and vote for options that I think students would prefer. As a result of the Committee work, some economic classes were changed into shorter modules so students have greater flexibility when choosing teachers and topics. It was the first democratic excercise I experienced....very valuable to me as a Chinese. Refreshing and memorable.

- Yufeng Guo, 2002-2004

The five years I spent at the U as a graduate student and later as a staff are one of the best times of my life. At the U, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to work with caring and dedicated faculty and colleagues. I also met the most loving and fun friends, whom I cherish dearly. The U is also where I met my husband, who was a visiting scholar at the U. We are both proud to be Gophers! No matter where we are, the U is always in our hearts. Go Gophers!

- Lili Dong, 2007

I graduated in 2011 with double degrees in Economics and Spanish Studies. As an international student from China, it may be typical to major in Economics. But my experience with the Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies is more memorable. I might be the only Chinese international student in the Spanish Studies major. At the beginning, I was quite nervous in the classes because most of my American classmates had much more experience in Spanish learning than I did. However, the faculty members of the Department were so helpful and caring that they encouraged me and guided me through to better get involved into both academic and daily life in the four years. I finally graduated with distinction. What was more unforgettable was that, in the last semester, I was recognized by Associate Professor Lui s Ramos-Garcia for my outstanding work and invited to present my essay in front of the faculty. I even became the featured alumni and had my quotes and picture posted on the Department website. All this confirms the motto of the University of Minnesota: driven to discover. Driven by yourself and by all those who are cordially helping you, you will discover how capable you are and how high you can aim.

- Xiaochen Ni, 2008-2011

My husband, Gauss Rescigno, assisted some of the first visiting scholars from China beginning in 1979. Based on the contacts he made, we went to Xi'an Jiaotong University for one academic year in 1981-82 to teach English to grad students and faculty who were planning to go abroad as visiting scholars. While economic reforms had been approved by then, most industry and agriculture was still state-run. During our year there, we saw the first glimmers of new market activity: sidewalk tailor shops and small farmers markets. I returned to XJTU in 2005 and reconnected with several of my former students. Now leaders in industry and academia, they had played key roles in the development of China's new economy. I am writing a book about my experiences and impressions, and keep a blog, The blog has some pairs photographs of Xi'an showing the same spots in both time periods. Unfortunately, the website cannot be viewed within China.

- Patti Isaacs, 1973-1976