Lemish finds this interdisciplinary program provides both breadth and depth in his studies. He focuses on China, and is able to study that nation through a wide variety of disciplines in classes at Pomona and the other Claremont Colleges. "It really gives you an opportunity to explore a lot of things," he says.
With a Freeman Foundation fellowship, Lemish spent a month in Cambodia interviewing members of the booming Chinese immigrant community there about why they left their native land. He conducted nearly all of his interviews in Chinese, without a translator. That research will become his senior thesis at Pomona.
"I've learned so much in history, religion, art, and literature from several interesting cultures. The faculty members are also amazing as educators and as people, and are not restricted to one school. I've had the opportunity to gain so much and change so much from faculty on several campuses … I feel that majoring in Asian Studies has made me such a well-rounded person."
The Asian Studies program is a great way to approach Asia through many different disciplines, and is true to the liberal arts philosophy of Pomona College. Non-majors as well as majors can benefit from the enthusiasm of the faculty and the depth and breadth of Asian Studies courses.
In an Asian Studies major, you can pick both a geographic area and subject of emphasis, which allows you to really personalize your major. The department allows you chose how narrow a focus in which you want to study, and that allows the opportunity to discover the subjects that you're most passionate about within the general field of Asian Studies.