LHS grad earns Chinese degree at Notre Dame

On May 15 Rona Mae Vaselaar, a 2012 Luverne High School graduate, graduated cum laude with Latin Honors from the University of Notre Dame with a major in Chinese.

Earlier in the month Vaselaar received the 2016 Chinese Language Award and her name will be added to the permanent plaque in the East Asian Languages and Cultures Department.

Vaselaar received honors of distinction from the East Asian Languages and Cultures Department and was presented with a gold-bound copy of her thesis during the department awards ceremony.

The Center of Languages and Cultures at the University of Notre Dame presented Vaselaar with an award for being the 2015-16 Outstanding Foreign Language Peer Tutor.

Her other accomplishments include a summer of study in Beijing, China, in 2013 through Duke University and a semester at Peking University in Beijing, China, in 2015.

Next fall Vaselaar, will study at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies in China, which is a joint graduate program through Johns Hopkins University and Nanjing University. After the first year of study in Nanjing, Vaselaar plans to return to Johns Hopkins University in Maryland to complete her master's degree.

Attending the graduation ceremonies at the University of Notre Dame were Vaselaar's parents, Eric and Meredith, as well as her brother, Eldon, and sister, Samantha Thompson.  

Speakers at the commencement ceremonies included United States Vice President Joe Biden and former Speaker of the House John Boehner.

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