Coco graduated from Grinnell College in May 2004 with an independently-designed major in Comparative Linguistics, focusing on Russian and Chinese language. In June of 2003, Coco traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia, to study Russian, and she fell in love with the city and the people who live there. During her four years at college, Coco also studied Chinese and Arabic, and she spent a semester abroad in Beijing. After her time on the Fulbright, Coco hopes to return to China and to move, for the first time, somewhere in the Arabic-speaking world.
On her Fulbright, Coco will return to St. Petersburg and will study the teaching of Russian as a foreign language in Herzen University. In her Fulbright year, Coco hopes to not only see the Russians' perspective on how their own language should be taught, but also to focus on how Russian teachers are instructed to teach Russian to different groups of foreigners (Americans,