Tokyo Institute of Technology: Three international students complete Intensive Japanese Course with final presentations

Three of Tokyo Tech’s international students recently completed their Intensive Japanese Course, which culminated in final presentations and a closing ceremony held online on July 30. After 3.5 hours of persistent study each weekday for four months, the trio demonstrated impressive progress in their language abilities while taking the audience on unique cultural journeys around the world.

Tokyo Tech’s Institute for Liberal Arts (ILA) offers short-term intensive courses twice a year to international students who want to improve their Japanese language skills rapidly. When joining the class, most students only know a handful of phrases in Japanese. Despite being held online due to COVID-19, the first course of academic year 2021 once again proved extremely effective.

At the final presentation session, participating students spoke in Japanese about the differences between Chinese and Japanese noodle dishes, the festival of Diwali, and the castles of Thailand and Japan. After each talk, presenters also answered a variety of questions from the audience. At the end of the session, all event participants voted on their favorite presentations to determine the award presented to each student.

At the closing ceremony, moderated by Intensive Japanese Course coordinator and Associate Professor Junko Morita, Tokyo Tech’s Vice President for Teaching and Learning Jun-ichi Imura offered the participants some encouraging words. “We are all in the midst of a harsh environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but I urge you to stay positive. This is an opportune time for you to think about what learning is all about, what your friends mean to you, and what Tokyo Tech campus life can offer. I am sure that when we turn the page on this global pandemic, you will see how much you have grown through your valuable experiences.”

In return, the intensive course students voiced their gratitude to their Tokyo Tech instructors and fellow students, and expressed a sense of achievement after wrapping up the course with their presentations.

The event concluded with a congratulatory message to the international students from ILA Professor Hilofumi Yamamoto. “Feeling a sense of accomplishment is an essential part of human life. This feeling can be found in various ways — through big, small, long-standing, or daily achievements. It is important to live every day in such a way that we enjoy this feeling in a range of situations. However, to feel a sense of accomplishment, we must first sow the seeds of accomplishment. What are these seeds? Do they exist? I think you already know. They are the challenges that we set for ourselves. At this closing ceremony today, I am truly proud of you and your accomplishments. And remember, you will not always be in the company of people who offer you praise. At such times, find a way to praise yourself. You deserve it, always. Congratulations.”

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