It was a treat having no agenda for this profile of an SF State nursing alumna for the College of Health & Social Sciences website - just tell Lorisa's story. She made it easy by being warm, talkative, and inspiringly accomplished.
The restrooms at Anchorage International Airport were immaculate, with ample supplies of soap and paper towels. That was Larisa Revzina’s first impression of the United States on March 3, 1993, a day indelibly etched in her memory, when she changed planes in Alaska on her emigration journey from Russia to the Bay Area. Later that day, a blooming magnolia tree and glistening swimming pool greeted her at the Palo Alto apartment that relatives had rented for her family, a stark contrast to the frigid, gray Moscow March she’d left behind. Inside the unfurnished apartment, she found a mattress on the floor, a refrigerator full of food, and a dishwasher (a device she’d never seen before) stocked with detergent — provisions kindly donated by members of her aunt’s synagogue. “I cried because I thought, gosh, it’s a very clean country, it’s beautiful surroundings and it’s excellent people,” she says, animated with the emotions of the day more than 20 years later. “This is absolutely my country.” Continue