Student Voice: Beyond academic life at AIU-Polina Prikhodko, National Research University Higher School of Economics (St. Petersburg), Russia

Ms. Polina Prikhodko, in front of Hermitage Pavilion at Peterhof (State museum-reserve), near Saint-Petersburg.


When I found out that in the spring semester there would be no opportunity to study at the Japanese university other than participating in an online exchange program, I decided that I would make the most of this wonderful chance. At my home university, I was so into academic achievements that I did not pay enough attention to extracurricular activities. That is why I was so interested in club activities at Akita International university during the orientation week. I thought it could help me to make Japanese friends and I was right. Eventually, I chose to participate in the Russian Themed House, Nihongo Themed House’s Wednesday meeting, the FLCP Leader program, and RCOS online events.

Unfortunately, I could not join such a variety of activities as much as I wanted. However, I made some unforgettable memories thanks to AIU’s range of extracurricular activities. I was really enjoying the online tea meeting which was organized by the members of the Russian Themed House where I was delighted to share some knowledge about my country and language in such a friendly atmosphere.

Moreover, I had meetings with Japanese students who are learning Russian or just interested in Russian culture. We used all the languages we know to communicate and it was such fun.

My ultimate dream was to interact with the local community of Akita city despite the online format. Thus, I immediately applied for the “Online Community Outreach Program” with children of a local Nursery School. I am cheerful that my dream fulfilled. I have no doubt that it was the extracurricular activities that made my studies at AIU unforgettable.