Private U.S. high schools, particularly religious schools, are enjoying a tuition windfall from high-paying Asian families eager to give their U.S. college-bound kids a head-start through enrollment on U.S. campuses. A few months ago I photographed students at St. Mary's School in Medford, Oregon for the Wall Street Journal story about U.S. academies luring a growing number of Asian students. It is such an interesting mix of cultures, religious school with Communist students, and irony that seems to work for everybody though. I was also struck by the fact that so many Chinese are clearly now wealthy enough to send their children across the globe and pay $49,000 a year for tuition, room and board (it is worth noting that locals only pay $12,000). All with the hopes of getting them into a US college where the acceptance rates are much higher (even Ivy Leagues like Harvard!) than any college in ultra-competitive China. Want to know more about this fascinating two about a clash of cultures and countries? Read the full story here.
The day after Christmas in Newport, the docks sat full of idle boats, as crabbers from northern California to Washington waited for inspectors to give them the go-ahead to fill their holds with the meaty Dungeness crab, the jewel of Oregon's seafood industry. I joined Wall Street Journal reporter and old skool music junkie Joel Millman on a trip to the coast to report on the crab season. For the second straight year, the eight-month crabbing season is starting late, after inspectors determined that crabs along a stretch of Washington coastline needed more time to get to 'meat' size. The gods of sunshine and of reporters that have to work on holidays took pity on us and we had some gorgeous weather and some very tasty seafood (I had clams, not crab). See the slideshow online at the WSJ.com
The WSJ called and asked me to shoot all the gay marriages that are sweeping across the fair state of Washington thanks to Referendum 74. So heartfelt to see couples together for 30 years or more (and with grown kids in tow) finally being able to make it legal. You've come a long way baby! And I did almost cried, I admit it. Thanks to Equality Southwest Washington for organizing many of the weddings.