Graduate Profile
Sondra Harper (2009 Graduate)


I attended GGSFS because I was ready for a career change. My family had recently moved from Utah to Texas. I had been a real estate agent, and now I was a mom with two young kids at home, in a new city, between careers. A feng shui practitioner consulted for my house, and I really liked the results. For my new career I was choosing between yoga teacher training and becoming certified as a feng shui practitioner.

I researched feng shui training here in Texas, but the schools taught only Black Hat Sect* feng shui. I wanted a broader and more rounded education. Golden Gate School of Feng Shui turned up in one of my Internet searches. I was drawn to the program because it taught classical feng shui and offered such a great range of classes.

I became a commuter student, flying to Northern California one weekend each month. It was a lot of traveling, but totally worth it. I stayed in a hotel with another student who was commuting from Los Angeles. Over the course of the school year she and I became close friends. We talked on the phone frequently about the homework and were able to really support one another. The school set us up with systems of long distance support, and I definitely used them. I returned to class each weekend with a good understanding of the material.

The deal I made with myself was that I would finish the program ready to work. I wanted to become certified and make feng shui my primary business, so I chose the vocational support program as well as the regular curriculum. I conducted many consultations during the academic year and as we progressed started charging for them. Learning that the service I offered was truly valuable to people -- and that I could be an expert in this subject and get paid well for it -- really built my confidence.

Each teacher at the school is unique and wonderful, with their own teaching style. They make feng shui come alive. Alex Stark in particular does a fantastic job of teaching something that is not Western by breaking it down and making it procedural and repeatable, which is so helpful. Through their teaching I fell in love with feng shui. I began to feel like this was the work I was truly meant to be doing.

I applied the feng shui principles I learned at the school in my home and saw some pretty significant changes. When we bought our first house in Texas, we didn't know that its feng shui was not supporting us. We were trying to sell it and weren't getting any offers or walkthroughs. I studied Ba Zhai in class and started making some elemental changes, which improved my husband's business -- he got more sales and started bringing in more money. Then I studied Flying Star technique, made some more changes, and the chi (energy) of the house improved. We sold it quickly after that, and I was able to ensure that the new home we moved into supported us and was healthy for everyone in my family.

I achieved my goal of making feng shui my primary business. I graduated just a few months ago (July 2009), and I now see several clients a month and am building my business. I love this work. It has been a great career change -- fantastic and fulfilling and so much more fun. It brings me joy to know that the feng shui knowledge I have is helping other people.

I believe there are no coincidences. If you feel drawn to this work and this school, there is probably a reason. If you want to make an impact on other people's lives that is positive and empowering, you should do it!

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*As taught by Professor Lin Yun, Black Sect Feng Shui is a synthesis of Tibetan and Chinese Buddhist, Taoist, and folk wisdom as well as modern psychology. Although a wonderful practice, it is not the way feng shui has been practiced traditionally for thousands of years throughout China.

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