AIU Student Voice: It is not fancy but will be meaningful for me and you – Yuki Ise, Degree-Seeking student (Senior year)


In “AIU Student Voice,” AIU students introduce their experiences with student life at AIU that they would like to share with international students. In these articles, you might find some information that only AIU students would know, as well as tips for enjoying your study abroad life at AIU.

Here is a message from Mr. Yuki Ise.

My first year of university life in Akita was far more diverse and novel than I could have ever imagined. As you know, our university is located in Akita Prefecture in the Tohoku region (northern part of Japan), and the university is surrounded by nature. When I was a high school student, AIU was new to me compared to universities in the city, and I longed to be on the AIU campus surrounded by nature, where a diverse range of people live. Although I was confused since I discovered that the campus was separated from the city center, the reality exceeded my expectations for AIU. 

I could live a fulfilling daily life with friends. Many Japanese students live on campus, and I could study with them in the library and IT room, which are open from early in the morning until late at night. You can meet your friends anytime, even at midnight, or take a walk around campus at night to take a break from your studies (but watch out for bears!).

Moreover, there were a lot of opportunities to experience the essence of “Akita.” Kanto festival, held at the beginning of August, is the most famous and traditional festival in Akita. Our university also has a performance team, and students participate as performers. 

Night time picture of Kanto festival


Besides all this, I enjoyed participating in the farm stay in Odate city. It is a bit far from the university, but I stayed at a farmer’s house where I tried cooking kiritanpo (a traditional Akita dish made of rice and shaped like a rod) and took a bath in the local hot spring.

Grilled kiritanpo during the farming stay


It might be hard to go outside of campus, but if you get up the courage to go out with some friends you made, you can enjoy a variety of “Akita” experiences. The Covid-19 pandemic that began in 2020 has deprived us of these opportunities to some extent, but I hope we can continue to enjoy such wonderful experiences from here on out.

From the Center for International Affairs

In the summer of 2022, famous festivals such as Kanto and Fireworks in Omagari will restart for the first time in three years. We hope that you will not only have a great experience at AIU, but also go outside of campus and spend some quality time at Akita’s festivals, trying local cuisine, coming to know the culture, and visiting the surrounding nature, all of which you can only experience here.