I can’t believe that it’s already over. Given that i’m still in Japan, it still feels as if the program hasn’t ended, but it simply isn’t the same being in japan without the incredible people and learning I’ve done this trip. I’ve gained so much from my interactions with some of the most wonderful people I’ve met at Dickinson, and I’m so glad to a part of a summer program as amazing as this one. Although I miss my fellow classmates, I know that this program couldn’t have been as powerful as it was, if it were not for our passionate instructor, Professor Alex Bates. His constant effort to make sure we were comfortable and educated on the trips and places we visited made this program 100% more rewarding in every way. I’m thankful to have this experience, and I wouldn’t have done it with any other group of individuals at Dickinson because I know that any change in our class would have made my experience drastically different than how it was.
As I head to New Zealand in less than 10 days, I am so honored to have spent the short Summer I had, in Japan. This country truly is a beauiful place, and I’m proud to be a citizen of Japan. I definitely learned more about how Japanese culture is an huge part of my identity although I’ve never been back until now. I’ve been able to talk to local students and people, and seeing how welcoming and caring they are has opened my eyes and helped me remind myself to be nicer to other and treat others with more respect that I do now. This trip has helped me solidify the fact that being Japanese is truly one of the three most important aspects/identities that personally define who I am. In coming to Japan, I’m more motivated to continue my learning for the Japanese language and make that more of a priority in my life.
Thank you Professor Bates, thank you Dickinson, Thank you Japan. You’ve all given me the opportunity to grow and learn about myself and a culture that I hold close to my heart.
Although I am leaving the country soon, I wish that it will not be my last time here. I hope to return soon, very, very soon.