Alumni Voices

【Class of 2021】

My experience of studying on MJSP has been extremely fruitful. Although I knew Japanese even before enrolling into the program, it was definitely worth taking Japanese classes as they had so much to offer. Also, the flexibility in the curriculum allowed me to explore different academic areas freely in addition to the core subjects, which was the best part for me since I was still figuring out the field I was truly interested in. Moreover, the professors were supportive throughout, as they guided me regularly and in great detail during Project Study as well as when I was preparing for graduate school. MJSP helped me cultivate various skills and boost my confidence, which will be valuable assets in my life ahead. (Gunjan Sharma, Class of 2021, India)

I remember what I felt between being accepted to MJSP and leaving Finland to go to Japan for the first time. I was excited, but I also couldn’t clearly imagine what my life would be like in Sapporo for four years, and I didn’t know what to expect from such a big change in my life. However, now that I look back on the four years I have spent in MJSP, I realize how much I have grown as a person, and how much Japan has let me grow in the right direction. My passion for all aspects of Japan has led to my high interest in Japanese history and religions, and this is thanks to the wide range of classes MJSP has to offer. I have grown to understand my language skills and my capabilities as an aspiring academic, and I have really challenged myself in the program and rewarded myself with new qualities I have found. My years in Japan aren’t over after MJSP – this is just the beginning – and coming to Hokkaido University was definitely the right choice. (Juliana Hanna Maria Porkkala, Class of 2021, Finland)

As a fully bilingual Japanese studies course in Japan, MJSP offers students many unique opportunities. As well as (obviously) improving my Japanese language skills exponentially, I have been able to experience life ‒ both academic and social ‒ in a way that would not have been possible if I had studied elsewhere. As well as meeting new people from Japan and all over the world, MJSP’s ‘project study’ course allowed me to discover and explore new interests in depth; an experience which has inspired me to continue on to post-graduate study. My third-year project study paper even got published, so you never know what you might achieve if you join MJSP! (James Dewi Letson, Class of 2021, United Kingdom)

Before starting my studies at Hokudai, I was not quite sure what to expect as I had never been to Japan before – however, I fell in love with Sapporo starting from the first week. MJSP’s wide variety of courses and great teachers have helped me to learn a lot about my strengths and interests: because of this, I especially enjoyed doing independent research. After four fruitful years at MJSP, I have reached a high level of Japanese, made friends with people from all over the world and learned to see my own country from a completely different perspective. I will continue my studies at Hokudai’s graduate school to learn more about EU and Japanese relations and international policy. (Netta Julia Hongisto, Class of 2021, Finland)

【Class of 2020】

MJSP offers great opportunities for studies, academic researches and student activities, which I took full advantage of during my 4 years of study. Here, my learning skills, communication skills and abilities to live on my own have drastically improved. Various courses in both English and Japanese have not only provided me with knowledge and experience, but also gave me so many great memories and friendships. I will keep living and working in Japan after graduation, and I strongly believe that my experience on MJSP will help me greatly in the future. (Bin Xu, Class of 2020, China)

I came to Hokkaido University with the dream of becoming a bridge between Vietnam (my home country) and Japan after graduation. While doing job hunting, I deeply felt the advantages of flexible and comprehensive curriculum equipped by MJSP. Despite no prior Japanese language background and uncertainties in choosing a specific major in the beginning, I am now confident to participate in group discussions with Japanese peers and know precisely which academic disciplines I am most interested in, thanks to a range of various classes provided by different faculties. My current future plan is to work for several years and then pursue an MBA degree to maximize business-related capabilities. (Van Thi Thuy Nguyen, Class of 2020, Vietnam)

Studying at MJSP for four years Japanese society and political economy as my major has been an extremely rewarding experience. I had a bit rosy picture of Japan before coming to Sapporo, but I have developed a more critical view based on what I learned and experienced. And of course my Japanese language skills have improved drastically. There is naturally life outside the studies, too, and I think those experiences are as valuable as the education itself. The people–both locals and people from other parts of the world–I’ve met while studying, participating a university hobby circle, working as a volunteer, and working part-time are clearly the best thing that happened to me in MJSP. (Silja Maria Ijas, Class of 2020, Finland)

Enrolling in MJSP at Hokkaido University is one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life. In MJSP, I could delve into Japanese Studies in both English and Japanese. Besides relevant coursework in Japanese Studies, I was able to take various classes in Faculty of Economics & Business and learned practical skills that would be useful for my career after graduation. Moreover, MJSP gave me the opportunity to study abroad at the University of Washington as an exchange student, allowing me to explore a new culture that is different from the Japanese culture or my own. The four years that I spent in MJSP have not only become a memorable part of my life but also given me the skills, knowledge, and most importantly the confidence to head towards a bright future. (Van Thi Tuyet Duong, Class of 2020, Vietnam)

【Class of 2019】

Having completed my four years at MJSP, not only did I gain knowledge in my field and had many opportunities for research, but I also can say with confidence that my language ability has drastically improved. The wide variety of subjects and freedom to study in different disciplines allowed me to shape my education the way I want and expand my expertise. Studying through MJSP allowed me to pursue my passion and helped prepare me for the future, research-wise and career-wise. (Chao Ping Lai, Class of 2019, USA)

My 4 years at MJSP has been an extremely enriching and exciting experience. My major was the Japanese history and culture module, and I took various classes on these subjects in both Japanese and English. Studying at Hokudai in a bilingual program allowed me to build my confidence in Japanese. Living here has also helped me to experience and understand Japanese culture firsthand, as well as transition easily into Japanese working culture. Additionally, over the course of my studies, I’ve made countless precious memories with both international and Japanese friends, which I will treasure very much even after graduation. (Tai Huay Wen, Class of 2019, Singapore)

MJSP gave me an opportunity to explore many different subjects and areas of disciple, which lets me finally find my strong interest. Our professors constantly encourage us to be independent learners, and they are also very supportive and are always around to guide us. After 4 years in MJSP, I felt motivated to continue my studies to be able to gain a more in-depth knowledge in my field of interest. (Zahra Fathiya Ceva, Class of 2019, Indonesia)     

I have learned and experienced so much during my four years in MJSP. The biggest advantage of the program is that you have so much freedom in choosing and experiencing various fields of study. I took many classes at the Education Faculty because of my interest in education, but also had experienced classes related to Economics, Linguistics, Sociology and Politics. After graduating from MJSP, I will continue my study at Hokkaido University Specialized Graduate School of Accounting.  (Tran Ngoc Anh, Class of 2019, Vietnam)