2021/02/24 Ryukoku University
Greetings to everyone considering studying abroad at Ryukoku University!
Today we will be sharing an interview with Ken, who will complete the Ryukoku University Japanese Culture and Language Program (JCLP) at the end of the 2020 academic year. Ken will enter to the Ryukoku University Graduate School of Economics from April 2021.
We hope the following will be useful to students currently considering studying abroad at Ryukoku University.
Interviewer: How did you find out about Ryukoku University?
Ken: I heard about it from a friend who is a graduate of the Ryukoku University Japanese Culture and Language Program (JCLP.)
Six years ago I became really interested in Japanese culture when my family visited Japan for the first time, and I thought that I would like to study abroad in Japan
Interviewer: What preparations did you have to do in order to take the entrance examination?
Ken: I studied Japanese at a local Japanese language school in China.
At that school I basically studied in order to pass Japanese language tests, and I passed level N2 of the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test.
I hardly did any speaking practice at all though, so when I was accepted to the JCLP I began spending more time conversing with my Japanese language teachers at the school in China
Interviewer: Did the admissions process go smoothly?
Ken: Yes, the admissions procedures went smoothly.
In order to show my Japanese language ability I had to take a video which I found very hard.
I had to give a self-introduction and talk about other things by myself into the camera, in Japanese.
Interviewer: You must have been quite nervous, right? So now, can you tell me about some fun memories that you have since coming to Japan?
Ken: Well, this may have changed now due to the coronavirus, but in 2019 at Ryukoku University, each international student was paired-up with a Japanese student who we called our tutor.
Once a week we got the chance to talk to each other, and in addition the international students and the tutors would also get together to go to karaoke or to go out.
I’m happy that I have made Japanese friends that I still keep in touch with even now.
Interviewer: Oh that’s great! Next, can you tell me if there were any memorable lessons or teachers?
Ken: Yes, the Japanese language class on “exchange” was something that made the biggest impression on me.
This class by Tezuka-sensei really stood out for me because in it we learnt by putting a lot of effort into discussions and conversations.
Interviewer: I believe you’re living in the student dormitories at the moment, how is that?
Ken: I’m living in the Ryukoku Kaikan and the rooms are very big and comfortable.
From the outside, the building looks kind of old, but inside it’s really clean.
To rent an apartment in Japan you need to prepare your own furniture and electrical appliances, plus the rental system is quite difficult to understand and you have to pay security deposits and key money to the landlord, so I really think it’s a good idea to stay in the dormitories when first coming to Japan.
And the dormitory rental fees are cheap.
But I also want to try living by myself, so when I go to graduate school I intend to move out of the dormitory.
Interviewer: Oh, that’s something to look forward to! Okay, next I’d like to ask you about what you intend to do once you complete the JCLP?
Ken: Once I complete the JCLP I intend to go the Ryukoku University Graduate School of Economics where I hope to undertake research focusing on Chinese rural economics.
After that, I hope to continue my research and go from the Master’s Program to the Doctoral Degree Program and then work in Japan as a researcher
Interviewer: Well you’ve taken the first steps towards your dream! Is there anything about living in Japan, other than your school classes, that you have become immersed in?
Ken: I’ve been working part time at a convenience store.
I wanted to practice speaking in Japanese more, so I chose a busier convenience store that’s a little bit further from my home but close to Kyoto station.
I didn’t really have a chance to use honorific language while I was learning Japanese in China, so speaking with the customers was difficult.
I’ve been working there for about one and a half years now.
Also I really like Japan’s railways so I often go and take photos, so you could call me a “toritetsu”, a railway enthusiast who enjoys taking pictures of trains.
I go and take photos of the JR, Keihan, and Hankyu line trains. Japan has a flourishing railroad culture, more so than China, so that’s one of the things I enjoy doing.
Interviewer: Wow, I’m surprised to hear that there are people from overseas who are also interested in taking photos of trains!
Finally do you have anything to say to students who are considering studying abroad in Japan?
Ken: Hi everyone, I hope you come and study at the JCLP and try your hardest to improve your Japanese!
That’s the end of our interview with Ken, who will graduate from the JCLP in the 2020 academic year.
We hope this will be useful for those of you who are considering studying abroad in Japan
We look forward to seeing you at Ryukoku University!