Keio University

22 May

Keio University was the first university visit of our trip. The university itself has multiple locations, but we only visited one of its smaller locations. We were first given a tour of the campus by one of the professors; compared to MSU, it was very small, but it very attractive. The campus had a very cozy feeling, it reminded me a bit of high school. During lunch time, a lot of kids sat outside in the courtyard chatting, it reminded me of being in high school; great atmosphere. After out tour, we headed to the professor’s class to meet and talk with his students. I was already so nervous because we had to do our presentation, but on top of that, I didn’t know how the students would interact with us.

After the presentation, we all broke into groups and got a chance to talk. Some of the student’s English was better than the others, but everyone there knew enough to hold a conversation. We all just went back and forth asking and answering each others questions. In our group, the Japanese students told us how they had been affected by the tsunami. Even though they live far from where it took place, it changed some part of their lives in some way. For example, a student was explaining to us that in Japan when you become a senior, you have to go job hunting and do visits with a lot of companies before you graduate. However, because of the disaster, she and a lot of her peers did not have that opportunity, so that had to find another opportunity to catch up. This was somewhat similar to our situation, because Dr. C. told us that a few of our company visits had been canceled for this same reason.  I think we were all still trying to get used to each other, so there were some points of awkward silence, but that all changed at lunch.

All of the students (American and Japanese) sat together at lunch, and we all talked. This was the best part of our visit for me. I think by this time we had relaxed so we all just sat around enjoying good food and exchanging stories with each other. Maybe it was the stress of our professors in the room from class that stopped us from being so open before, lol.


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