Student Voice: My Take on Life at AIU - Camilla Gunther, Philipps-Universitaet Marburg, Germany

Akita scenery, through the eyes of Camilla


When I prepared for my stay at AIU, I painted a vivid picture in my mind of what I anticipated here in Japan. I was ready to embark on an adventure I had been longing for over a year. First and foremost, I wanted to challenge myself by immersing myself into something foreign, something I had never experienced before.

I was looking for growth and personal development. Where better to do than in a faraway country, where I did not come as a tourist but where I came to spend the next six months of my life? I felt no fear because my heart and mind were ready. When I arrived at AIU, however, I soon noticed that my time here would not be plain sailing. Suddenly, I confronted with a cultural circle. I thought I had done my research on sufficiently. I did not fully comprehend nor know how to interpret it correctly. Suddenly I found myself amidst a bundle of challenges that I knew I was ready to tackle. It was one sunny afternoon in late summer, where I took a bit of time away from the hustle and bustle of the campus and sat outside the Student Café, sipping on my matcha milk and gazing off to the trees in the setting sun.

It was then that I realized that all this was already part of the challenge I hoped to encounter. It was already me growing, and I highly believe that had I not come here, I would not have seen where my inner potential of growth lies. Summer has gone by and made a place for autumn, one of my favorite seasons. It marks my three months at AIU, half-time. In these three months, I have learned so much and embraced all the challenges, which I like to call “opportunity to become a better version of myself.”

I am not alone, and I have my family and friends at home as well as my little AIU family who give me continuous support. Most of all, however, I have myself, and I keep finding the answers I am looking for within myself. I know that this is only the beginning of my journey in life, but I firmly believe that AIU is a significant step stone on my path towards myself.


Studied at AIU in the Fall 2019 Semester.