Difei Li

Master of Arts in Higher Education, '12

Difei  Li, School of Education

Field of Study: MA Higher Education

Year in Program: c/o 2012

Geographic Region: Shenyang, Liaoning, China

Undergraduate: Dalian University of Foreign Languages

Prior to UM: Prior to coming to SOE, I worked as education and production coordinator at a chamber music presenting organization in Kalamazoo, Michigan. I wore different hats there, such as designing educational outreach programs, supervising concert operations, running the ticket office, developing patron relationships, and supervising summer part-time employees. Before my time at this position, I was a graduate student in English at Western Michigan University, where I worked as a graduate instructor, writing consultant at the writing center, and a columnist for the WMU school newspaper. Prior to my time at WMU, I was an English instructor at Northeastern University in China, where I enjoyed working with many bright and hardworking students both as their classroom instructor and mentor on cocurricular activities.

Why your program?  I worked in the higher education sector in both China and America for quite a few years. I started to raise questions about college student development, curricular structure, outcome assessment, and international higher education that I earnestly wanted to seek answers for. The program description for higher education at CSHPE seemed to contain all the elements related to my questions and curiosities, and that was when I decided to apply to this program.

The best part of SOE so far: The best part of my experience as a graduate student here has been meeting a cohort with a diverse background, broadening my views on many social and cultural issues. Opportunities to attend educational events hosted by SOE and U-M, such as lectures by guest speakers, have introduced me to lots of cutting-edge information and ideas and helped me develop more open and sophisticated thinking. Rigorous demands from coursework plus the practicum component of this program make life here very busy. However, it is fulfilling to me, knowing that I am able to bring the combination of efficiency and quality to a higher level to meet the challenges of this program.