Center for Japanese Language and Culture

Students' Comments

Sabina Dudova(Czech Republic)Czech Republic

Sabina DudovaHello, everyone! I am Sabina from Czech Republic. When I started learning Japanese several years ago, studying in Japan was my biggest dream. Passionate about various aspects of Japanese culture, I made a lot of plans before coming to Japan. I wanted to go to the concerts of my favourite bands, visit historical places of the Age of Warring States and taste unknown cuisines. The campus of Aichi Shukutoku University has a perfect location for doing any of these. Not at all crowded Nagakute is close to Nagoya and other interesting places, therefore I (beside my studies) have time even for traveling and gaining other experiences. Thanks to that, my plans are becoming reality one after another.
Speaking of studies, that's of course a big part of studying abroad. It's true that we have a lot of homeworks, but the teachers always correct mistakes and explain our mistakes to us. Thanks to that, we come to know our weak spots and polishing our knowledges becomes easier. Things about Japanese I didn't understand before are now getting clear. And what's more, the lectures are actually fun. Now, I am much more confident in using Japanese than before. Of course, even now I make mistakes and sometimes lack kanji or vocabulary, but isn't that normal? On the contrary, that gives me a reason to try even harder.But it's not just Japanese, I start to better understand even Japanese culture. Before coming to Japan, I had various knowledges about it, but as a whole it was a mystery. These knowledges, now connecting to the reality, are becoming clear. I believe, that when studying Japanese, these kind of things can be understood better in Japan.
Studying at Aichi Shukutoku University and living in iHouse is not just an experience, it's a lot of precious memories. And I want to spend my time here without wasting one single day.

Sari Vanhanen(Finland)Finland

Sari VanhanenI have been interested in Japanese traditional culture and history for a long time. I have also visited Japan several times as a tourist and noticed that Japanese language is the key to better understanding of Japanese culture, people and their way of thinking. That is why I took a leave of absence from my work last year and studied basic studies in Japanese language and culture at University of Eastern Finland in Joutsenon Opisto. There I heard about opportunities of studying in Japan and searched for a suitable university in internet. I decided to apply for Japanese Studies Program in Aichi Shukutoku University.
I chose Aichi Shukutoku University because their mission is to provide students with knowledge of Japanese language to be used for various purposes and not just learning for tests and university entrance exams. My goal is working life oriented. By improving my Japanese skills, I would like to find new work opportunities and I think that Aichi Shukutoku University can help me with that.
During the application process, I got always fast and excellent answers to all my questions from the Center of International Programs staff. During my stay, they help me by doing all paperwork that is needed for authorities and I can always ask them if I have a problem. I live in iHouse, which is a modern building right on campus. Every student has their own room. Kitchen, toilet and showers are shared. You can relax by yourself in your peaceful room or spend time together with other international students in common area. iHouse staff is nice and you can come and go whenever you like. Students are always treated with respect by university staff.
In my free time I go to the university swimming pool and gym. Both are free of charge. I have joined the university tea ceremony club, where I can practice the way of tea together with Japanese students. I really like it. Weekends and holidays, I travel a lot. There are so many places to see and things to experience in Japan. I also enjoy spending time and discussing with Japanese students, “buddies”.
My class is very small, we are only 4 students. I get homework from classes, but I think that the amount of homework is not too much. I have enough time to rest and do other things. In addition to listening comprehension, reading comprehension, discussion and writing, I have chosen voluntary subjects, calligraphy and flower arrangement, which are my favorites. Teachers are friendly and willing to help me in learning Japanese.

Yuxin Tian(China)China

Yuxin TianHi there, I’m Yuxin Tian from China. The last character in my name is a little hard to remember, but it means “fragrance” in Chinese.
I first fell in love with anime when I saw One Piece as a kid. The game Monster Hunter got me interested in Japanese video games. I ended up majoring in Japanese when I got to university.
When I first started studying Japanese, it was really hard. My classmates zoomed right past me. It worried me, and I gradually lost confidence in my ability to learn the language. Then I decided to find my own way of studying, so whenever I had time I would just keep watching Japanese dramas, variety shows, movies, news, and so on. I also started getting into Japanese music, and I’d always make sure to read the lyrics, too. I started liking the band Arashi, and that gave me fresh motivation to study Japanese. I took a part-time job at a restaurant aimed at Japanese customers to practice my Japanese as well. Miraculously, my grades started improving, and I was able to take advantage of an opportunity to study abroad in Japan. Still, I don’t think I chose the best study methods. Whenever I use my Japanese, I always feel ungrounded. Once I actually got to Japan, I realized just how many gaps there were in my knowledge.
I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to study at the Center for Japanese Language and Culture. Everything I’m learning in my classes is interesting, from Japanese folklore to detailed particle usage. I also get to have fun studying aspects of traditional Japanese culture, like flower-arranging and calligraphy. We also get to go on field trips, which have allowed me to see how wonderful Osaka and Kyoto are. The teachers in the Center for Japanese Language and Culture are so kind and helpful. They’re always willing to answer student questions, and I’m really grateful for that. With classes and homework every day, my Japanese ability is improving, and my life is getting richer here. I want to make the most of the time I have left and enjoy being a foreign student in Japan to the fullest.

Hyeonseung Kim(Korea)Korea

Hyeonseung KimHi there, I’m Hyeonseung Kim from Korea. I’ve been in Japan for three months now, and I finally feel like I’m starting to get used to it. I’m majoring in Japanese studies, so I studied a lot about Japan for two years at my previous school before coming here. I had come to Japan on vacation twice before, each time for a week or so, but I was really nervous when I actually started living here. I know it sounds strange for me to say it, but I was pretty confident in my Japanese ability before I came here, and didn’t really think living abroad would be that big of a deal. But my confidence was completely crushed after a week. I couldn’t get across what I was trying to say at all, even though I was speaking Japanese. The reality hit me that the vocabulary I had learned actually had quite a different nuance than what I had thought. I realized that no matter how much personal effort I put in, there were limits to what I could do simply because I wasn’t Japanese. The classes at the Center for Japanese Language and Culture were incredibly helpful in that regard, since they’re tailored to the level of individual students. And the small class sizes mean that you can ask questions about anything you don’t personally understand. All of the teachers are so nice, so I always do my best to learn as much as I can. The homework can be really difficult, and it’s tough to have to get through it nearly every night. But the teachers know how to give just the right amount so that it’s challenging to get through but always possible. I realized that if I could just push through that moment, my Japanese ability would improve. Another thing I love is getting to meet people from all over the world at iHouse. I’m not the type of person who goes out much, so I can’t make friends outside of places like school and my part-time job. The idea of making foreign friends was beyond my wildest dreams, and the fact that I have is an experience I’ll remember for a lifetime.
Aichi Shukutoku University is located in Aichi Prefecture, which is between Tokyo and Osaka?so if you want to travel to different parts of Japan, I think it’s the perfect spot. If you’ve never studied Japanese before, being able to take classes in Japan is a precious opportunity. And if you’re already confident in your Japanese, the experience will allow you to experience firsthand a more natural, living language and the distinctive features of Japanese culture. The more you know, the more you see, so it’s best not to get hung up on any one thing. What you get is what you put in, and the possibilities are endless! I’m definitely going to make the most of the nine months I have left.

Lois Edmunds(England)England

Lois EdmundsHello everyone! My name is Lois and I'm from England. I've only been in Japan for three months and it’s been so fun thus far. I'm happy because little by little my Japanese capability has been improving.
Aichi Shukutoku University is an excellent university in my opinion. All the teachers are very compassionate and kind. If I don't understand something the teacher will explain it to me slowly. Every morning we have classes. For example, reading comprehension, workshop class, essay writing etc. we learn a lot here.
Nagakute town is a pretty place. There are a variety of shops and restaurants nearby. iHouse is also very pretty. All of the international students live together alongside the Japanese resident assistants. You can ask them any question and they will help you. iHouse is on campus so from iHouse to class it takes about 5 minutes, It's very convenient. I think living and studying here at this university is very fun!’

Timo Eichhofer(Germany)Germany

Timo EichhoferHi, my full name “Eichhofer Timo”, when written in Katakana, becomes “アイヒホファ ティモ”. However, since my German family name is quite difficult to pronounce, all the teachers and other students just call me “Timo”. By the time I was writing this little self-introduction, it was roughly 4 months ago when I got on an airplane in the 9000 km far away North of Germany. About 24 hours and 9000 km later I arrived at the Chubu-international-airport, finding myself in a completely new environment from home. Although I haven´t been here for any longer than 4 months, I already had lots of fun and there were quite a lot of things, that I saw for the first time in my life, surprised or somewhat strange to me. I for example found the daily life in Japan here in the so called “i-House” to be surprisingly convenient to an extent, where at one point in time I ended up thinking that, it is more convenient here than in my home country of Germany, subsequently surprising myself.
That being sad of course there are still things that I have my problems with. As it stands now my Japanese proficiency is sufficient for day to day affairs. But because Kanji are still very difficult for me, I have not yet been able to read Japanese newspapers and use the Japanese internet efficiently. Luckily here classes are divided into Listening, Hearing, Writing, Conversation and the likes and each subject has 5 different levels one can attend, equally to the proficiency in sad subject. So even if one lacks in a certain field that doesn´t pose any problems either.
I am certain that, in the future I will look back upon this 1 year I spent at Aichi-Shukutoku-University as an exchange student as one of the happiest times of my life.
In line with that I can only advise everybody that thinks about choosing this university as their exchange destination to do so. In general, people here are extremely nice and open-minded so there really shouldn´t be anything to worry about!