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Study Japanese at Purdue University

Purdue University, who has heard of this wonderful university located in Indiana?  Hopefully all of you have at least once in your life.  To those of you whom are loyal Genki Readers, you already know I am a Proud Boilermaker.  A few weeks ago my oldest niece had her final orchestra concert for her elementary school.  This is the first concert we have been able to ever go to because it’s the first time living in the same state as my sister and her family.  Moving to Indiana, in part was due to my two nieces and wanting to see them grow up.  As an added plus, her family still lives in West Lafayette, IN – home of the boilers.  So I get to see part of my family and my Alma mater.  As I was walking around campus on a fast tour around the campus sharing my favorite places with my youngest niece, I thought to myself how fun it would be to share a few fun facts about myself at PU and also this international known university.

Fun Facts: (Some Random, Some Not So Much)

Fun Fact #1:  Purdue is my Alma Mater, actually I graduated with a double major so I guess one could say I graduated twice at once.  These two majors were in Japanese and Asian Studies.  Since I’m terrible at being bored, I also double minored in international business and also pre-veterinary medicine.  Weird combination, I know.

Fun Fact #2:  PU is best known for being one of the world’s best aerospace engineering university.  In fact, the first man to go into space, the first man to walk on the moon and the last man to be shot into space were all PU graduates.  Although the government isn’t supporting space exploration, PU still pushes on with education in the concentration and thus is said 1 in every 3 astronauts have studied at PU.  Not a bad statistic I think.

Fun Fact #3:  Speaking of the aviation department at PU, it is also a fact Amelia Earhart was teaching/consulting just before her last flight.  It was at PU she prepared her plane for her last flight.

Fun Fact #4:  PU is not just known internationally for it’s contributions to space exploration but also is know for the extracurricular sports success.  Drew Brees, which I’m sure you football fans have heard of him, is a famous quarterback and graduate from PU.

Drew Brees at PU

Drew Brees while he was still playing for PU. Photo from Instagram.

Fun Fact #5:  My sister also went to PU but she graduated with a degree in English and, I think, minored in international law.  It’s a fun fact that she actually took classes with Drew Brees and graduated with him.  It must be strange to remember someone sitting in your class and now seeing him/her on television.

Fun Fact #6:  It’s not all serious though at PU, there are also fun myths and true stories that some might not know unless in a fraternity and/or sorority.  Fun fact, I was a member of a fraternity and a sorority.  Yep, you read that correctly.  It was not due to a sex change or anything of the such but rather the bands fraternity and sorority are held together (at least they were when I was a member).  So I belonged to both in a sense.  Fun Fact:  Neil Armstrong was a member of the band  fraternity Kappa Kappa Psi which I was a member of the band sorority Tau Beta Sigma.  He took his fraternity pin to the moon with him.

Fun Fact #7:  Many of you might be surprised to hear I was actually in the PU bands.  Actually my freshman year I earned a spot in the orchestra/symphony- something rather rare for freshman as it’s a spot usually for more senior students.  Additionally I was the first chair my second semester and it was at this time I helped record the PU fighting song.  So if you ever hear the PU fighting song, it’s available on iTunes, you can hear me playing the top spot for the trumpet section.  Fun fact:  Neil Armstrong was actually a member of the PU band, he played the baritone (if I am remembering correctly).

Kermit Named after PU Professor

It’s said Jen Hensen was childhood friends with the PU professor so Kermit was named after him. Not sure if this is a myth or not but fun nonetheless. Photo from Instagram.

Fun Fact #8:  Another historical fun fact about PU is Kermit the Frog was actually named after a PU professor.  Not sure if this is true but the story is passes around by many people and something we were taught while studying to be a member or TBS (Tau Beta Sigma).

Purdue University Clock Tower Myths

The famous clock tower. There are a lot of myths about walking under this clock tower and it’s purpose.

Fun Fact #9:  The famous clock tower also has a few fun facts within it that many students might not be aware.  As you can see in the photo, the clock is black and white instead of the normal red/white combination.  Red/White is generally used in close proximity to airports, which this one is but had to be changed for very important reasons.  Every PU student knows Indiana University (IU) is not to be mentioned on campus so this clock tower had to get special permission to be made without that school’s colors.  So today it is still black/white.  Additionally, look close and you will see the #4 isn’t written with the normal IV but rather IIII.  That’s because no one wants a confusion to be with it being IU.  Another fun fact is if you kiss someone under the clock tower, that two will get married and live happily-ever-after.  Yep, it happened to me and my husband.

Learning Japanese at Purdue University

Stanley Coulter Building where some of the best Japanese professors have offices. This is where I spent countless hours studying Japanese and teaching others about America.

Fun Fact #10:  Another fun fact that I love being as I passed it everyday.  My Japanese classes were all in a building called Stanley Coulter (right next to the clock tower) and also the famous lucky Lion Water Fountain.  It’s the location all spirited PU fans go before a football game to sing spirit songs, cheer on the team, rub the nose of the lion for luck and greet the Boilermaker Express.  But did you know there is a myth at this very location?  Well, it’s said that if a virgin walks past, it will come alive and roar at that virgin.  I can attest to this one, and nope it is false.

Purdue Lion Water Fountain Myth

The lion fountain at PU. There are four and each one spits water that is supposed to be good luck. So, next time you are there, get some fresh lucky water.

So those are just a few of the fun facts for this blog, hopefully it was a little entertaining to all of you readers.  Anyone else out there from PU?

Spring at PU

It was spring when we visited PU last and these were some gorgeous yellow flowers on a bush outside my favorite building on campus. No idea what they are though, any ideas?