Student Voice: My Experience At AIU Coming From Australia – Yoko CALETTI, Macquarie University, Australia
Yoko CALETTI from Macquarie University, Australia is participating in our exchange program starting in the Spring 2023 semester. We would like to introduce her experience at AIU.
Coming to study in Japan is already challenging enough, but being located in the countryside adds a bigger challenge on top of it. When applying to Japanese universities, at first you may think of applying to universities in areas like Tokyo or Kyoto, but living in Akita, which is quite far from any major cities, has provided me with an experience I would have otherwise never had. Being in Akita can really open your eyes to how Japanese citizens live traditionally in a rural area as opposed to in a big city, similar to my own home town of Sydney, Australia.
AIU has a really great mix of Westernized and Japanese cultures. As everyone can speak English here, you are able to learn about Akita, Japanese society, or more specific traditions like the tea ceremony class that I am enrolled in.
My favourite experiences would have to be meeting and building strong friendships with both people from all over the world as well as local Japanese students. I live in a 12-person dormitory and am fortunate enough to be close friends with each person I live with. This created opportunities for us to organise an upcoming long weekend trip to Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea, as well as to organise movie nights, pizza nights and activities as simple as late-night study sessions together in the dining room, which not every dorm gets close enough to do!
I’ve made some of my closest friendships since coming to AIU just over a month ago and have already planned future overseas trips with my flatmates for when they all go back to their home countries in Europe. I also plan to visit my Japanese friends overseas during their year abroad!
This is truly an experience I’ll cherish forever and I know we are all excited to make some more memories!