Student Profiles

The students in the Asian Studies Program come from all over campus. Many of them study abroad and all of them take extensive studies in Asian language and culture. Learn about some of our students below.

If you are a student at the University of Arkansas and have an interest in Asian culture, please contact any of our faculty members to learn how you can get involved with the program. 

Chelsea BrewerI used to live in Japan when I was young, which is where I gained my love for the language and culture. I plan to use my degree to go into teaching and improve Japan-America relations.

Aric CaelestraMy interest in the program grew out of my studies in International Relations. I steadily acquired more classes focusing on Asia and eventually became hooked not only because of the enthusiastic professors, but the breadth and scope of the classes in general. It is my hope to pursue an education in Asian-related courses at the graduate level.

Zoe GastineauWhen entering into college, we all face the same difficult questions. “What will my major be, and how will I use it?” Regardless of what we plan in advance, I am proof that our goals transform and develop. My second semester as a freshman I arrived a the University of Arkansas where history became my primary focus. After declaring this particular major, I had not yet decided which area of study to focus but rather took the opportunity to explore different themes and periods which would encourage growth in my studies. As a result of this, I studied abroad and gained a second major and two minors. I am a person, who in 2015, was honored to go to South Korea as a Fulbright ETA and teach at a special Science High School in Jinju. With this experience I was also able to travel to Japan, Vietnam, and Cambodia.

I graduated with honors from the University of Arkansas, receiving the Senior Scholar William J. Fulbright Award for the highest academic achievement among the history department and the David W. Edwards Scholarship for outstanding Undergraduate Study of History in 2013 and 2014.

With my academic choice I am constantly reminded of the legacies of others, but I am excited and determined to make my legacy just as grand.

Daniel MalloryI find the history and culture of Eastern Asia to be very interesting because of the strong differences present between European history (which I was used to studying), and East Asian history. I started to study Japanese due to my interest in International Business, and I found the case of the Japanese economic recovery very interesting, which lead me to develop a strong interest in Japanese.


Joshua MatlockI fell in love with the Chinese language in high school when I became friends with a Chinese foreign exchange student. The Asian Studies program has given me the opportunity to study Chinese for all five years of my education, while also acquiring knowledge about the cultural, political, and economic backgrounds of China and of East Asia in general. After graduation, I'm planning on spending one or two years teaching English in China and then pursuing a job with the U.S. State Department as a Foreign Service Officer. I feel well-equipped with all the language training and the political and economic insights the Asian Studies program has given me.

John MetcalfI have always loved learning about other cultures and history in general. As somone interested in teaching and writing, I try to learn as much as I possibly can. 

Emily MiserI'm interested in East Asian studies because I want to be a Japanese literary translator. It's important that I am well versed in East Asian culture and history. It will help me gain a more indepth understanding of Japan.

Brandon ParkerI decided to explore the major having been enrolled in Japanese classes for over a year, and fell in love with it. The classes are all simply fascinating. The history is so different from what we are familiar with in the west, and you get a unique perspective that can even be applied to other degrees.

Bishop SitesMy interest in the Asian worl comes from a fascination with Japanese aesthetics of beauty. In my research, I am focused on how early Japanese aristocrats seemed to have deliberately designed Japanese culture over history. More specifically, I am focusing on Japanese literature, poetry, and story-telling from that early Japanese literary world view.

Analeigh UlrichI have been interested in East Asian culture since I was a child, especially Japanese culture. I decided I wanted to live and work in Japan when I was about eleven years old. I feel like it is important to gain an understanding of other cultures, and for my future job, it would be important to study the culture I will be working in.