Asian Studies Major

The Asian Studies Program prepares students for engaged global citizenship and life-long personal and professional involvement with Asian societies through focused interdisciplinary study.  

Spotlights

Kiandro Scavella '18, Monbukagakusho Scholar, Japan

Kiandro Scavella

Why Asian Studies?
I wasn't always an Asian Studies major, like most Bahamians at CSBSJU I delved into the sciences. I was first a Numerical Computation major, and then Computer Science, then Natural Science, somewhere along the line Art came into the mix too.  I then remembered a time a high school when I began to learn Japanese just as a little hobby on the side. However, since The Bahamas is light years away from Japan nobody took me seriously when I said, "I'm going to learn Japanese, and fly to Japan one day." I also remember defending against the xenophobic ignorance a nation based on tourism would hurl towards East Asia, due to the immigrants in The Bahamas.  It was at that moment, I knew what direction I wanted to take off in, and that direction was to the East. The feeling I received from defending something that had value to me, and others was ecstatic.

Asian Studies has been a gateway for me to expand my knowledge and boundaries around many topics deemed controversial in The Bahamas.  I've made friends from over 8 different countries, learned a slew of historical, linguistic and cultural backgrounds, and my ego has stepped down by at least 5 levels since high school (seriously, ask my high school friends, I was a mess).

Cindy Liliana Gonzales '14
Graduate Student, Saint John's SOT, MN
Cindy Gonzalez

Why Asian Studies?
When I left home for college I had one goal, learn something completely new.  I never knew that would be Chinese.  I experimented with other majors but Asian Studies truly gave me a space to challenge my mind and gain so many new experiences.  I really enjoyed all of my history classes but also dove into other departments that offered Asian Studies tagged classes such as Theology: Islam.  

Asian Studies is a major that focuses on further developing an understanding and passion for diversity.  It ignites a passion for a lifetime of learning and encourages students to think beyond CSB/SJU — there is a whole world outside of campus and Asian Studies invites students to enter into that world without fear and authentic curiosity. 

Tyler Brakner '15, IT Professional, Australia

Why Asian Studies?
My first major at Saint Ben’s was theology, so my initial pursuit of Asian studies did not have a direct academic focus. I had taken a few Japanese language courses in high school, and decided to pursue a Japanese minor at Saint Ben’s. When my junior year approached, I committed to a semester abroad and travelled to India to study economics and sociology at St. Xavier’s University in Kolkata. As a result, a lot of Asian studies courses fell into my lap in very relational, communal, and experiential learning environments. Thus I decided to add Asian studies as my second major after having cultivated many meaningful friendships and having found a home in the international frame in which Asian studies had oriented my life.

"CSB/SJU has shown me the importance of being a global citizen abroad and applying it to the classroom setting back on campus. My education in Global Business and Asian Studies has helped me to learn the tools of what it takes to be a global leader and understand the complexities of the interdependent world that exist in today's professional world ."

 Courtney Kimball, IT Program Manager, Total Quality Logistics, OH

 Courtney Kimball

Why Asian Studies?
My first major at Saint Ben’s was theology, so my initial pursuit of Asian studies did not have a direct academic focus. I had taken a few Japanese language courses in high school, and decided to pursue a Japanese minor at Saint Ben’s. When my junior year approached, I committed to a semester abroad and travelled to India to study economics and sociology at St. Xavier’s University in Kolkata. As a result, a lot of Asian studies courses fell into my lap in very relational, communal, and experiential learning environments. Thus I decided to add Asian studies as my second major after having cultivated many meaningful friendships and having found a home in the international frame in which Asian studies had oriented my life.