Alumni & Friends

yay we're glad you're here

We love to keep in contact with our alumni as best we can. Sometimes we showcase our alumni to current students so as to inspire them to pursue language degrees. We also occasionally do stories on our alumni that get shared with the University on Newswire.

You could be one of our featured alumni if you are interested!

Just fill out this quick form and let us know a little about yourself. We sincerely thank you!


Featured Alumni

Terry Vo

Terry Vo graduated from the U of A in 2007. She majored in International Relations and minored in Japanese. She lived in Japan for two years working in the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program. Afterwards, she returned to Nashville to be the MEXT Scholarship Coordinator for the Consulate General of Japan in Nashville, during which she named one of Nashville's Top 30 Under 30 honorees in 2011. She is currently working on her Master's in Governance and Public Policy at the University of Queensland in Australia.


Nathan Smith

Nathan Smith graduated from the U of A in 2012 with majors in Spanish and Latin American Studies, and a minor in Political Science. As an undergraduate, he studied Spanish and Latin American Politics for one semester at the Universidad de Belgrano in Buenos Aires, Argentina and volunteered weekly at an orphanage within the city. He currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin and works as a loan specialist with BMO Harris Financial Group. With his skills acquired from the U of A’s Spanish/LAST program, he often translates for his coworkers whenever Spanish documents are received. He plans on returning to school to work towards an MBA degree, as well as take graduate Spanish classes to continue using Spanish in a business environment.

Matthew Koeppe

Matthew Koeppe graduated from the University of Arkansas with a B.A. in Spanish and Latin American Studies in 1998. From there he went on to earn an M.A. in Latin American Studies (2000) and a Ph.D. in Geography (2005) from the University of Kansas, where his dissertation research focused on the expansion of industrial agriculture in the Brazilian Amazon. While finishing his dissertation, Matthew secured employment in the Office of International and Interagency Relations (OIIR) at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C. After the one-year program at NASA, he worked for five years at the Association of American Geographers, also in Washington, before returning to NASA OIIR on a permanent basis in 2011. He currently serves as the NASA international policy lead for Japan and for Earth science, and he still gets to use his Spanish and Portuguese language skills on a regular basis.

Neal Jensen graduated cum laude from the U of A in 2006. He majored in International Business and minored in Japanese. He worked at the Seiyu headquarters in Tokyo, where he improved his Japanese to near-native proficiency. He is currently the Director of the Japan and Southeast Asia Office with the Arkansas Economic Development Commission.