Born and raised in Taiwan, Ms. Ding first came to the U.S. in 2001, ostensibly to earn a master's degree in American Studies at SUNY Buffalo, but in reality to learn how to read and write English. In Monterey, the Institute helped her turn her language skills into a vocation. “At its best, interpreting is like retelling a good story,” she says. So it's no surprise that Ms. Ding's studies brought her back to the illuminating literature of her childhood: Tang poetry, the Analects of Confucius, and classic Chinese folktales, her personal favorite.
Upon graduation, she embarked on a freelance career with her first conference interpreting assignment from the State Department. She still remembers the excitement and nervousness, along with "the many obligatory rookie mistakes," as she puts it.
Returning to MIIS, she is happy to share her style and field experience with enthusiastic newcomers. Still impressed by outstanding public speakers, she believes that behind every memorable argument lies a good story. To do their speeches justice, she is committed to going back to the basics and striving for a succinct, beautiful and trustworthy delivery—just like her favorite Chinese folktales so powerfully achieved.
Areas of Interest
“What Americans value and strive for is straight talking, plain saying,” said A. E. Hotchner. “They don’t go in for ambiguity or dissembling, the etiquette of hidden meaning, the skill of the socially polite lie.” That is the central theme of my teaching and practice.
- PhD in Urban Planning/Regional Economics, University of California-Los Angeles
- MA in Urban Planning/International Development, University of Kansas
- Advanced Diploma in Architecture, National University of San Juan, Argentina
Professor DePaolis has been teaching at the Institute since 2001.