Question about academics

Davide Gualandi basement
Thu Nov 3 11:29:05 EST 2005


My name's Davide and I've been avidly keeping track of your discussions for 
the past few years. Even if I can't recall ever posting on the mailing 
list, I've been a fervid Japanese film enthusiast for several years.

Anyway... to make the story short... a couple of years ago I relocated to 
San Francisco all the way from Italy with the intention to "go back to 
school". In Italy, I worked as a contributing writer for a few film and 
music magazines, but always "drooled" thinking about moving away from home. 
Here (in SF) I now completed (well... I'm close to complete) lower division 
courses (mostly general education and the equivalent of Jap101) and I now 
find myself questioning what I really want to do.

While "rhetoric" at Berkeley (with a focus in Narrative and Image) looks 
great to gain more experience at researching/writing, I'm not sure 1) how 
many chances I have to get in as an international student (residents have 
full priority) and 2) if the prestige of the university at undergraduate 
level is worth all those money.

Considering that my plan is to get the BA out of the way in the shortest 
time possible and to pursue a master or a Ph.D at a university that has a 
good East Asian studies program (with emphasis in film), I'm wandering 1) 
if I should keep going with Japanese and strive for a BA in Japanese or 
keep it general (let's say, Film Studies or Humanities). Also, as the 
application deadlines start to get closer, I'm wondering if I should stress 
applying at prestigious universities across the country or just go to the 
local State University, planning to hit renowned universities as a graduate 
students (considering that I'll then have more chances to receive some 
financial aid).

I'm sorry if this is too "off topic", but I was curious about your academic 
background and the path you took to get "closer" to the cinema you've been 
passionate about.

Thanks in advance,


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