Skip Navigation
Kalamazoo College

Alexis Diller

East Asian Studies
Birmingham, MI
East Asian Studies and Music
Study Abroad:
Kyoto, Japan
Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:
So Delicious’ Turtle Trails
Best Adjective to Describe You:

In 15 words or less, why should a student want to be involved in this department?
Sometimes you get to watch anime as homework.

What initially drew you to this department?  What keeps you coming back?
I wanted to learn more about Japan to pair my language studies and found out I actually really enjoy learning about the culture and history as well, so I stuck with it. Plus, what I learn about Japan within this department helps me understand what I study in ethnomusicology as well.

What’s your biggest piece of advice to first years and sophomores in this department?
Start taking classes that interest you because China & Japan both have so many different angles to look at. One class might seem boring if you’re not into one certain aspect, but other classes cover anything and everything since both countries are so old. Test around and see what you like and what interests you the most.

How does your department connect to your other interests and activities?
My main interest in music in Japan has been influenced by this department because I am able to contextual my music studies with Japan as a society, its culture, and the history of the music I study about.

What’s the most valuable thing you’ve learned at K?
Part of growing up is realizing you never have your sh*t together, but finding a way to make it seem like you do.

What has been your favorite class at K?  Why?
Psychology of Music. I’m secretly a psychology nerd at heart and this class taught me so many things I have always wondered about music but never known the reasons behind. Dr. Tan is also an incredibly passionate professor and her classes were always exciting.

What is your SIP?
I will be translating a volume of manga for my SIP, called Your Lie in April.  This includes editing scanlations to create English pages from the original Japanese manga, as well as an essay observing the rise of music genres in anime/manga.

What are your career aspirations/next steps after K?
If becoming a Pokémon master doesn’t work out, I’m hoping to either make it back to Japan, or to continue my studies in graduate school.

DSA Spotlights