Meet the Team
Director of GO Minnesota
Cathy is the Director of GO Minnesota. She has worked as an international education professional since 1999, but her interest in the field began with a study abroad program to Germany as an undergraduate student, and continued as an English teacher in Nagoya, Japan. She holds a B.A. in German, a B.S. in International Business, and a Master of International and Intercultural Management from the School for International Training. She began working at the University of Minnesota in 2007 as a Program Director in the Learning Abroad Center, and as Director of the newly established GO Minnesota program in 2012. Prior to her employment at the University, she worked at two large public research universities and for a study abroad program provider. She has also served in several leadership roles with NAFSA at the regional level and at the national level. She has a deep interest in intercultural communication and is a Qualified Administrator for the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI).
Leah joined GO Minnesota from the start in 2012. She works as the program director providing curricula development, program delivery, student advising, and administrative support. Before joining GO, Leah grew to love international education through study abroad experiences in Mexico, Ireland, and Costa Rica. She also worked at the International Student and Scholar Services office at the University of Minnesota for 4 years after completing her M.A. in Comparative and International Development Education in 2008. Leah is a Qualified Administrator for the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI), and has worked with several academic and experiential short-term programs with dozens of students from diverse cultural backgrounds and countries from every continent but Antarctica!
Wanling Qu, Ed. D.
China Office Director
As Director of the University of Minnesota’s (UMN) China Office in Beijing, Wanling Qu advances the mission of the University’s China Center and provides marketing support for GO Minnesota. Wanling has been an advocate of expanded academic, business, and cultural exchange between China and the United States since becoming director of the Freshman Program at the Cultural Exchange College of Sichuan International Studies University (SISU) in the early 2000s. She has earned degrees in International Business and English from SISU, as well as a Master of Arts in Human Resources and Industrial Relations from the UMN Carlson School of Management and a doctoral degree in Higher Education Administration for International Education from the UMN College of Education and Human Development. Wanling’s professional background includes working for premier institutions of higher education and large corporations in both China and America. Wanling speaks fluent Chinese and English.
Marketing and Communications Specialist
Elise has been providing marketing and communication assistance to the GO team since 2014. She supports GO Minnesota’s partner relationships and is responsible for maintaining the website and overseeing the program’s print and social media. Elise’s career in international education began in 1996. She has organized and led student groups to China, Mexico, Nepal and Russia, but the majority of her career has been spent in marketing and recruiting. As an undergraduate, she was fortunate to receive a U.S. State Department scholarship to study in Beijing, China just two years after studying in Kunming, China. Elise has a bachelor's degree in International Affairs with an emphasis in Chinese, and a Master's of Nonprofit Management.
Katie provides administrative and enrollment management support to GO Minnesota students and staff. A Minnesota native, Katie's first trip out of the U.S. happened while studying abroad in Mexico as an undergraduate student at Luther College, followed by a semester in Spain. She graduated with a degree in Elementary Education and Spanish. The “travel bug” continued after graduation and led to a teaching position in Mexico for a year. Upon her return from Mexico, Katie spent four years working as an Administrative Assistant in St. Paul. However, she was still not done traveling and after completing her TEFL certification, she moved to South Korea to teach English to public school students for three years. Katie returned to the U.S. in late 2018 and joined the GO Minnesota team in early 2019.