Conflicted global leaders in training

By Emily Howland

Where are you all from?Andra Bosneag: Bucharest, Romania, and I live in Kansas when I don’t live in Minnesota.

Caley Long: I’m from St. Cloud, Minnesota. Born and bred.

Luisa Jou: My parents live in Maplegrove, Minnesota, but I was born in Panama City and my parents are from China.

Anastasia ‘Nastia’ Baboshkina (’10): I was born in St. Petersberg, Russia and we moved to the Twin Cities, Bloomington, when I was 12 years old and we’ve been here every since.

LJ: I don’t think any of us consider ourselves just American.

CL: I do by default, I guess.

LJ: I feel like Caley has such a strong Spanish and Portuguese background.

CL: Yeah, I’d say I have connections with that community and am tied to that community. I love Brazil. I’m Brazilian by heart I guess and American by blood. And Andra has been to a ton of countries.

ANB: The most out of us probably.

AB: I studied abroad for a whole year. I kind of got attached to the places. My host family in Spain called me little Catalan. I still think of myself as Romanian and I can’t ignore that I’m American. If you say where you’re from it implies just that [place].

You all lived in the Spanish House together. What drew you to live there?

AB: I was trying to get out of Dupre.

CL: I also wanted to get out of Dupre and speak Spanish.

LJ: I wanted to speak more Spanish and be in a community where we were supposed to speak Spanish.

CL: We had parties in the Spanish house. They have a big basement.

LJ: We connected with everyone who lived there.

CL: We still keep in touch with everyone from there.

AB: That was one of the other reasons [I moved there], you always had someone to talk to. We loved to cook and we would take a long time cooking together.

CL: Andra made Romanian dumplings.

Is the food you like to cook mostly from where you’re “from” or where you studied abroad?

LJ: I think I cook a lot of Chinese food and Andra makes a lot of Romanian food. Caley eats a lot of Mexican food.

CL: I eat a lot of quesadillas.

LJ: Andra’s always eating bread and I eat rice for every meal.

AB: I would die without olive oil since study abroad. I went to Spain and the Netherlands.

What have been the highlights of living in GCA and senior year?

CL: We like to mediate with each other, have conversations about personal issues.

AB: I think we’ve gotten to the point where we know each other very, very well and we tell each other things that we don’t want to hear but I feel like there is no shyness anymore.

ANB: To highlight something that happened, after Founder’s Day one of the friends, Liz, invited the band that played at Founder’s Day so they came over here.

AB: We had salsa!

CL: They were good dancers.

LJ: They were. I think they invited themselves. He asked [Liz] where’s the after party? People started randomly coming in.

ANB: We didn’t have anything planned. No prepared drinks or anything.

Do you have lots of parties here?

CL: A few, nothing too crazy.

AB: We like to be selective.

LJ: But otherwise we don’t throw parties every weekend.

CL: I think we’re growing up.

ANB: I wish you guys didn’t grow up so fast.

LJ: I definitely feel like a grandma.

How many languages do you know between all of the roommates?

LJ: I speak Hakka, which is a dialect of Chinese, Spanish and I can understand Cantonese better than Spanish, I just have a hard time speaking it.

CL: English, of course. I take Spanish and Portuguese and Arabic. And then Andra knows most of the languages.

AB: I speak French, Romanian, Catalan, Portuguese and Spanish.

LJ: Our roommate speaks Russian. I want to learn Bulgarian in the future. So we’re constantly hearing different languages in this house.

CL: Yeah, someone’s always on the phone speaking a different language.

AB: We watch Chinese telenovelas.

AB: We’re starting a Russian one on Monday.

ANB: Are we really? You promise me?

LJ: Sometimes we have Telemundo on.

CL: Al Jazeera, French movies at 4 in the morning.

I hear you won the Peeps contest. What is this contest?

CL: It is a History vs. Classics department comeptition to create a historical moment for Peeps to create a diorama. We chose the French Revolution with a lot of gore and blood. We spent hours on it for some reason we have yet to know. We were happy about it. We were proud. It was our culminating Macalester experience.

How do you see yourselves in terms of internationalism at Mac?

CL: We definitely have domestic roots more so than international students. And I think that’s what ties us together more so than if we were all international students.

AB: There are elements of cultures that unite in sharing a lot of things. We’re not just one culture. We’ll pick up on food or music. Sometimes we talk about time and how obsessed people in the U.S. are with time. We try to relax and take life easier. We all thought that study abroad was more laid back.

CL: We try to incorporate things we learned abroad to our life here to be a more well rounded person.

AB: Sometimes you just have impulses to tell people what happened on study abroad over and over again.

CL: Andra likes to repeat her stories.

LJ: Wouldn’t you say you’ve changed?

CL: Yeah, I’d say I changed my perspective on life since study abroad to be more relaxed, take things with a grain of salt, chill out.

What do you plan to do next year?

LJ: I was a financial technician intern at the USDA and they offered me a permanent position. It’s in downtown Minneapolis. I love that part of the city.

CL: We want to chill around here. I know I do. I’ve had a few interviews-teaching things. I teach now in St. Paul public schools so hopefully that will continue on.

AB: I’m going to travel and utilize my last piece of freedom. I’m going to Ecuador for two weeks and then I’ll be home with my family and then I’ll be in Romania for one month and then a three week thing in Finland for my cousin’s wedding and then I’ll come back and be with these gorgeous people.

CL: We’re getting a cat.

AB: There’s no way we’re getting a cat. And then I guess look for a job and live happily ever after.

ANB: And they’ll be here for my senior year!

CL: And you’ll steal toilet paper for us.