After graduating in 2015, I decided to return to Asia. In my time as a student at GVSU, I had studied abroad in Japan and had fallen in love with the country. Thus, I now find myself happily teaching English in Japan. I’m currently stationed in Nagano Prefecture in a small town in the country. While the location isn’t prime for a “happening” social-night-life, simply being here is advancing my studies post-graduation. I have joined a Japanese Traditional Drumming Taiko group, advanced my level of Japanese, and climbed several mountains in the vicinity.
Every day at my job I work with kids, Japanese teachers, and other staff to broaden their perspectives on the cultural differences in the world and assist their English. Then, on the days I don’t work, I spend my time visiting neighboring countries and cities.
By being a part of the IR program at GVSU I have become interested in Japan not as just a cultural lesson, but as a political one as well. Seeing first-hand the effects of disputed islands, the decrees of a disliked prime minister, and the protests to American military, I feel that I can seek to understand these situations not only from an emotional perspective, but a factual and historical one as well. For this reason, I’m happy I have come with a desire to find the proper sources, well-backed data, and a variety of things I want to understand more.