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Walnut valley Unified School District

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Foreign Correspondent Visits Suzanne Students

NEWS                                                                                        Walnut Valley Unified School District
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                 880 S. Lemon Avenue
May 30, 2012                                                                           Walnut, CA 91789

Kelli Gile, Office of Community Resources
(909) 595-1261 ext. 31204

Foreign Correspondent Visits Suzanne Students

WALNUT, CA--Suzanne Middle School 6th graders recently got a chance to meet an alumnus who has become a successful journalist based in Beijing.

Melissa Chan works as a foreign correspondent for the Al Jazeera English news media.

Social Studies teacher Steve Cusson contacted Chan and asked her to share her story with his classes after reading an article in the May 14 edition of the Los Angeles Times.

After covering over 400 stories in China, Chan became the first accredited foreign correspondent to be expelled from the country in 14 years.  The act sparked a flurry of news reports and expressions of solidarity from fellow journalists. She has now returned home to Southern California.

The Suzanne teacher discussed many of the news events Chan was covering in China during his current events prior to her visit on May 23.

“The students were amazed that they got to meet her,” Cusson said.

Chan was impressed by the intelligent questions they asked because they knew the background to many of the stories she covered, he said.

She is now looking forward to a year of clean air, Whole Foods and Starbucks chai tea lattes when she attends Stanford University in the fall. She was recently accepted for a Knight Fellowship there.


Suzanne 6th grade students in Steve Cusson’s social studies classes learned about the life of a foreign correspondent from alum Melissa Chan on May 23. 

Suzanne grad Melissa Chan recently visited with 6th grade students. Shown: Melissa Chan, teacher Steve Cusson, and students Anna Wang, Elisabeth Howard, Renee Hua, and Vivian Lee.