Wednesday, January 09, 2008

You Go, Girl

I just found out that Yukari Yoshihara (nee Yukari Umezawa, the name she still uses on books and whatnot) is a graduate of Keio University's Shonan Fujisawa Campus, where I teach. Yukari is a 5-dan professional go player and holds the Women's Kisei title, making her one of the best women players in the country, indeed, probably the world.

Pro go players rarely graduate from college; they usually become "insei" (apprentice go players) at about fifteen, and some don't even bother to finish high school. She, like most pros, was recognized early for her genius.

Yukari is the official technical adviser to the "Hikaru no Go" series of manga. Reportedly, she likes teaching, which is one of the reasons she elected to graduate from college.

Although Keio is Japan's oldest (and, of course, best :-) private university (150 years old this year, making it older than either of my other two alma maters, Caltech and USC), but the SFC campus is only about 17 years old. Yukari, no surprise, was one of the founders of the SFC go club.

I must hang my head in shame that I haven't played a game at all in over six months. Moving, commuting, three trips to the U.S., piano lessons, and that minor thing called work got in the way of more important things, like family and go.

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