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Corlis Taylor learned quilting after she came to Alaska, then transferred her newfound skills into clothing she calls "wearable art." Approaching retirement from Fairbanks Memorial Hospital, where she's worked for twenty-seven years and serves as the education department manager, she reflects on her life, her art, and her Alaska experiences. She came north in 1979 as a Vista volunteer, moving from Florida to Bethel. “I thought, ‘Oh, what have I gotten myself into?,’” she said. What she found was home.

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David James is an Alaskan author and literary critic whose work has been published by the Anchorage Daily News, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, Anchorage Press, Alaska Dispatch News, and Ester Republic. He is editing a forthcoming anthology of Alaska writing.


The Literacy Council of Alaska helps immigrants in Fairbanks find their way to work, success, and citizenship.
“In the borough there are over 10 thousand people who don’t speak English as their first language. That’s over 10 percent of our population,” explained Mike Kolasa, the council’s executive director, adding, “Last year we had 175 English language learners students.”
A winding path brought Chidozie Menakaya from Lagos, Nigeria, to Fairbanks, Alaska. The latest installment in "Becoming Alaskan."
When I landed back in Fairbanks and walked through those airport doors, I was relieved,” recalled Chidozie Menakaya after returning to Alaska from Lagos, Nigeria. “I thought, ‘What does that mean if Fairbanks gives me relief?’” Then he broke out laughing.