After completing her degree in economics, Wangdi says she plans to attend the Year 2000 Folklife Festival in Washington, D.C., on July 1-2. Fellow Tibetans from all over the world are helping the Smithsonian Institution organize a festival celebrating "Tibetan Culture Beyond the Land of the Snows."
She plans to work for a year, possibly in computer graphics and Web design. "Eventually though, I plan to go to grad school (doesn't everyone at Reed?) and would like to get a degree in environmental economics, with a focus on developing countries." For her thesis, Wangdi is doing a case study of the Columbia River Gorge, to see whether its economy is moving toward sustainable development. "Sustainable development theory argues that we should look at growth in a more holistic manner and take into account both its benefits and costs. Only then will more balanced development occur. This is especially relevant to the gorge because it has great economic potential and yet is a very valuable scenic and natural resource.
After graduate school, Wangdi's career plans are still not clear. "I'm leaving that option pretty open right now," she said. But she still intends to help her people. "In the future, I would definitely like to be actively involved in supporting the Tibetan cause," said Wangdi, "as I think it's my duty to do."
As a final note, most of the students interviewed for this article said they were still basically the same people described in the profiles about their likes and dislikes that appeared in the 1996 article. Owen Edson said that glimpse into his personality (along with the accompanying photo) helped bring his girlfriend into his life. Shanna Tury said she still enjoys poetry, keeping fit, and being with friends. Amanda Macindoe said she still loves chicken and dumplings, but since she's been at Reed she has learned how to make dumplings with tofu. As for Derek Lyons, he said that after the article appeared, a number of people approached him and said simply, "So . . . you like corndogs."
(John Alexander, who is a junior at Reed this year, chose not to participate in the interview.)
Susan Hauser is a freelance writer whose work regularly appears in the Wall Street Journal. She wrote about Philip Wertheimer '48 in the May 1999 Reed.