Laurie (Scholten) Arizumi

Laurie Arizumi is the Nihongo Web lead instructor. She has been working with Japanese via distance education since 1990 at The University of Alabama, first as co-instructor for the live via satellite and video programs, and now for the online courses. During these years, Laurie has traveled to Japan four times, and once to Okinawa with camera crews to shoot video. In 1994 Laurie received a Fulbright-Hays scholarship to attend the summer session at the Japan Foundation Language Institute in Urawa, Japan, to study modern Japanese teaching methodology. She also has certificates in K-12 Japanese language (UA) and ESL (FSU).

Laurie received a certificate in Distance Education from The University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2000, by distance education. She is currently instructing/managing online Chinese and Arabic courses at UA in addition to online and classroom Japanese.

At Yamato silk show trying out fabrics

Playing koto at the yacht club

Laurie's interest in Japanese culture began in 1981 when she took koto lessons at The Florida State University where she was pursuing a BA in music history. In 1982, while taking first-year Japanese language, she met Koji Arizumi, who was also a music student. It was love at first sight, and the two married in Tallahassee in 1983. OOPS! Nine months after the honeymoon, along came a baby girl they named Yuriko Amaryllis ("Amy"). Koji and Laurie took some time off from college to live in Japan for two years with the new baby. In 1990 Laurie went back to FSU to complete her Masters of Musicology with an emphasis on Ethnomusicology.

Her latest hobby is playing the Celtic harp in a band consisting of University of Alabama faculty. The band is called "Queen Anne's Revenge" and plays mostly Celtic music. She is alse head of the taiko Japanese drumming group Nozomi Daiko. For sports, Laurie is seriously into crew rowing and is an active member of the Black Warrior Rowing Club.

Amy's Scrapbook

Amy was born in Florida in 1984, but soon made the trip to Japan at 5 months of age. While living in Japan, Koji's parents enjoyed spoiling "Yuri-pea."

To the right, she is dancing in her yukata at age 2.

Amy is now a UA student majoring in Anthropology with minors in World Religions and Photography. She wants to do social work in areas of Africa and is learning Swahili and Thai.  

Amy has traveled to Tokyo, Istanbul (Turkey) and Ghana (Africa).

Amy Arizumi

Laurie's first instrument was clarinet, which she studied with Ted Lane at FSU. While getting her master's degree in ethnomusicology at FSU, she specialized in Andean, Japanese and Chinese music. At FSU from 1980 to 1990 (with a two-year break to have the baby and visit Japan) she played Andean flutes, ch'in, cheng, koto, Venezuelan harp, cuatro, steel drums, and some baritone sax in the salsa band. She wanted to stay at FSU and get her doctorate but they said "You've been here 11 years! Go away!" (Actually, it's against policy.)

Laurie has also studied Aikido in Japan (since 1983) and continues to train in Yoseikan Budo. She has a shodan (first degree black-belt) in Aikijutsu and a shodan in Goshinjutsu. Yoseikan is similar to Jujutsu with boxing, karate, and iaijutsu all mixed in.


Andean music group at FSU (Laurie first row, third from left - with the long panpipes)