Japan Alumni eNews Vol. 90 October 7th, 2016

Japan Alumni eNews Vol. 90

1. Life in Japan by Photo Memories of Japan (Photo from readers)

Learn the life in Japan with photos posted by our readers! We look forward to your submissions of memorable photos of your experiences in Japan, including your student life, exposure to Japanese culture and history, travel, and more.

1 Photo title (15 words or less)
2 Name (katakana and alphabet)
3 Nationality
4 Name of your school in Japan

Landscape of study abroad location

The theme of the October issue is Life in Japan by Photo introduces Memories of Japan. (Honorific title is omitted.)


Hernan Jourdan (Argentine)
School in Japan: School of Tokyo Visual Arts
Title: Ginza in the Afternoon

2. Alumni News

Bringing you news and first-hand stories about international students!

1) News on International Students

NEWS 1 : Schedule of Job-hunting for Students in April 2018 is announced

The Japan Business Federation officially announced that the schedule of job-hunting in 2018 is going to be same as 2017. From this, company information sessions for junior (first grade in technical school) will start in March and interviews for senior (second grade in technical school) will open in June. Changes had been avoided in the job-hunting schedule for three years in a row although some member companies of Japan Business Federation have been asking to reconsider it. Schedule of job-hunting in 2019 is still up in the air; decisions will be made after the ongoing discussions.

NEWS 2 : Tokyo Holds Disaster Drill to Check Preparedness for the Evacuation of Foreigners during the Olympics

A disaster drill, simulating an earthquake, was performed in Tokyo on September 4 to train evacuation guidance for foreign tourists for the coming Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics in 2020. This drill is conducted every year at this season. This year, about 10,000 people joined including the police, fireman, and local citizens of Sumida-ward and Katsushika-ward. About 100 foreigners from 29 countries living and working in Tokyo joined this drill and acted out as foreign tourists.

2) Introduction of Current International Students

Bhattarai Jinash

Name: Bhattarai Jinash
Nationality: Nepali
University in Japan: Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
Major: International Management
Academic year: Senior
Period of Stay in Japan: April 2009 to present
Japanese proficiency level: Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1


I had thought of studying abroad in an advanced country without any particular reason after graduating high school. I chose Japan because at that time not so many Nepalese went to study here. I thought if I could learn Japanese, I would be able to use my Japanese language skills in Nepal in the future.

Before visiting Japan, I thought of Japan as a country with high buildings since it’s an advanced country. However in Oita, the townscape was like the countryside in Nepal. I was surprised that English is not really common but I was inspired by the kind people who hired me and the safe surroundings.

Since my major is International Management, I want to gain knowledge on management and operations. I chose lessons either in Japanese or English so I can learn by sharing opinions with students from all over the world. My dream is to become a person who can influence other people. There is not a clear plan yet but I take each moment as an opportunity for me to grow.

There are many memories of Japan; an unforgettable one is when I entered a national speech contest and won the prize. After the contest, it was posted in a large space of Oita Godo Shimbun newspaper. My acquaintances in Japan and my parents were very glad. I joined various events in Oita prefecture after winning the prize.

To those students who consider studying in Japan, I advise you to study not only what you want to learn but also about Japan. It is important to treat everything without worries like a newborn child.

3) List of Japan Alumni Associations

Introduction of “Support for International Students Returning Home”

Hokkaido International Student Net

Hokkaido International Student Net is co-organized by the Hokkaido-Ishikari Promotion Bureau and private companies. The portal site was created in hopes of turning international students who are studying in Hokkaido and former international students who have returned to their home country to be fans of Hokkaido. It also aims to establish networks among companies in Hokkaido, to foster people’s relationship, to expand economic relations, and to encourage international exchanges.

• Sending useful information about living and study to international students by making international students network in Hokkaido
• Using global human resources to increase the chances of international students to have a part-time job and work in Japan
• Developing the tourism of Hokkaido through the appeal of international students who would communicate to their home country in their native language
• Providing information such as culture, history, and industry of Hokkaido to make international students fans of Hokkaido

(Japanese version only)

3. Academic News

Introducing scholarships, grants, unique activities at particular universities, and more!

1) Introduction of faculties/graduate schools

Here we introduce you to particular faculties and graduate schools at Japanese universities.

Ehime University

Ehime University

General Outline of the University (as of May, 2016)
Name: Ehime University
Johoku Campus: 3 Bunkyo-cho, Matsuyama, Ehime
Tarumi Campus: 3-5-7 Tarumi, Matsuyama, Ehime
Shigenobu Campus: Shidzukawa, Toon, Ehime
Number of students: 8,305 (Undergraduate), 1,114 (Graduate)
Number of international students: 89 (Undergraduate), 152 (Graduate), 81 (Exchange, etc.)

1. About Ehime University

Ehime University is located in Matsuyama, which is well-known for Japan’s oldest hot spring, Dogo Onsen, haiku and for being one of the most comfortable cities in Japan to live. Ehime University is the largest university on Shikoku, one of the four main islands in Japan, and home of world-leading research institutes such as the Center for Marine Environmental Studies (CMES), the Geodynamics Research Center (GRC), the Proteo-Science Center (PROS) and the Research Center of Ancient East Asian Iron Culture.

Ehime University, as a center of knowledge, is taking the initiative in the sustainable development of local communities and provides education and research activities which can contribute to society from the global point of view.

2. Outline and features of distinctive courses

Ehime University has 7 faculties: Agriculture, Collaborative Regional Innovation, Education, Engineering, Law and Letters, Science and the School of Medicine. Each provides graduate school education.

In line with our goal of supporting local sustainable development, we are proud of the Faculty of Collaborative Regional Innovation which was established in April 2016. This new faculty integrating the Arts and Sciences has the ultimate goal of sustaining the development of local communities.

At the graduate level the United Graduate School of Agricultural Sciences (for Doctoral degree), there are two courses which provide instruction in English: (1) the Special Doctoral Program for International Students in Tropical and Subtropical Agriculture and Related Sciences and (2) the Special Doctoral Course Program in Agricultural Sciences for International Students from Asia, Africa and the Pacific Rim.

The Graduate School of Science and Engineering also offers master and doctoral courses taught in English in the fields of disaster mitigation:

3. Support for International Students

Ehime University has accommodation facilities which can accommodate up to 128 international students, and bicycles are provided to these and other students.

Financial support, such as scholarships and tuition exemption, is provided especially for privately funded students. About 90% of the privately funded students at Ehime University benefit from some form of financial support.

To facilitate international exchanges, several friendship or volunteer associations, both in and outside the university, hold parties and events on a regular basis, providing international students with many opportunities to communicate with local citizens and learn about Japanese culture.

A local NPO provides used household goods for free to Ehime University international students.

4. Support for Employment in Japan

Ehime University provides the “Training for Employment in Japan” for the development of human resources who can become cultural bridges between their home countries and Japan. The program includes classes in Business Japanese, Japanese Business Manners and Japanese Business Culture and provides internships in more than 140 companies in and out of Ehime Prefecture. Students who have completed the program have been working actively not only in Japan but also overseas, helping to build a global network with local communities and businesses abroad.

Of the 84 students completing the course, 50 were employed in Japan and 32 in Ehime. In 2014, Ehime University placed 13th in domestic employment ranking for the number of international students who found a job in the prefecture where their university is located, and 1st as a national university.

2) Application information for scholarships, grants, appointments, prizes etc.

Interchange Association Japan

Project Title:
Scholarship for International Students 2017 (Local application)
Applicant Eligibility:
Applicant should be a student from Taiwan (*3) with good grades who will study or is already studying full time (*2) in master’s program, professional degree program, or doctoral program (*1) in a Japanese university as of April 1, 2017.
*1 If a doctoral program is divided to 2-year first term and 3-year second term, the early 2-year term will be considered as master’s program.
*2 Full time student means research student, trainee, and majors. Special and auditing students are not included.
*3 Applicant must have Taiwanese nationality and come to Japan to study in a Japanese university with student visa. (Applicant with Japanese nationality will not be accepted)
* Please check the website to see other considerations about applicants.
Age of applicant:
Must be born after April 2, 1982. Students who have already received scholarship from us and will be applying next year are exempted.
Amount of grant:
(1) Scholarship
JPY 144,000 per month (Master's program and professional degree program)
JPY 145,000 per month (Doctoral program). JPY 2,000 or JPY 3,000 will be added to monthly amount for candidate who studies in a particular area. (Amount of grant may change.)
(2) Tuition fees and others
Grant period:
From April 2017 until graduation (standard period of study)
Application period:
Friday, October 28, 2016 as indicated by postmark
How to submit:
Download application form from the link below and send it by mail

(Japanese version only)

Charge of Scholarship, Administration Department, Interchange Association Japan
Aoba-Roppongi Building 7F, 3-16-33 Roppongi, Minato-ku, 106-0032 Tokyo
TEL 03-5573-2600 (Ext. 14)
FAX 03-5573-2601
E-mail: shougakukin@koryu.or.jp

(Japanese version only)

The Tojuro Iijima Foundation for Food Science and Technology

Project title:
Research Promotion for International Students 2016
This foundation was co-established by Yamazaki Baking Co., Ltd. and its founder, Tojuro Iijima, in 1984. The aim of this foundation is to improve the research environment of international students in Japan for better research content to contribute to better dietary habits and food culture as well as advancement of health and growth of food industry. Also, international students who had received this grant are expected to contribute to their own country in the fields of government, private company, and academic circles after returning to home country.
Applicant Eligibility:
1.Researchers who are doing fundamental or applied research in the fields of natural science or interdisciplinary fields of natural and social sciences to solve social issues in one of the three areas: energy and environment, city and transportation, and health and medical care.
2.Researchers affiliated to a Japanese research institute (a graduate school with doctoral courses or an undergraduate school connected to a postgraduate institution).
Researchers who are eligible to Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology or from Japan Society for the Promotion of Science). All nationalities are welcome.
Who can apply:
International students who conduct research on food science areas selected by the foundation. Grants, which will be based on the request of their academic supervisor, will be delivered through the latter.
Applicant Eligibility:
Students must fulfill the following requirements:
1. Students must have nationality of Asian countries including China, Taiwan, Korea and ASEAN countries and study in Japan.
2. Students must be taking a doctoral program and whose research area is specified by the foundation. Students who are going to study in April 2017 are included.
3. Age must be under 40 as of April 1, 2017.
4. Students must have recommendation from the dean of the graduate school. Only one recommendation per dean will be accepted.
5. Students must not have received any grant from us in the past.
6. Students must not have received any grants from another private research foundation.
Application period:
Friday, December 2, 2016 as indicated by the postmark
Amount of grant:
Up to JPY 1,000,000 per grant (Eight grants will be accepted.)
How to apply:
Download application form from the link below and send it by mail

(Japanese version only)

How to deliver:
Grant will be delivered after the presentation ceremony in the middle of April 2017.

The Tojuro Iijima Foundation for Food Science and Technology
Sunplaza 35 Building 6F, 1-9-2 Ichikawa, Ichikawa-city, 272-0034 Chiba
TEL: 047-323-5580, 5581
FAX: 047-323-5580
E-mail: info@iijima-kinenzaidan.or.jp

(Japanese version only)

3) Information about international symposium

29th International Microprocesses and Nanotechnology Conference (MNC 2016)

This international symposium is organized by the Japan Society of Applied Physics and held every year since 1988. The aim of MNC conference is to contribute to sustainable development of the semiconductor industry and the rise of new technologies and new industries based on micro-fabrication technology by proactively working on highly interesting next-generation technology.

(Japanese version only)
Date: Tuesday, November 8, 2016 – Friday, November 11, 2016
Place: ANA Crowne Plaza Kyoto, Kyoto, Japan

4) Academic Societies

<Literature, Philosophy, Education, Psychology, Sociology, History>

<Law, Politics>

<Economics, Commercial Science, Management>




<Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmaceutical Sciences>

5) Japanese Language Test

4.Business News

JASSO provides information about job-search for both current and graduate international students!

1) Job Hunting Event Information

The Program for Advancement of Foreign Human Resources is being launched from 2015, as a collaborative effort of related government ministries and agencies, and other relevant organizations. The Program seeks to increase employment of international students in Japan, and hence increase the number of highly skilled international professionals in the future, following the recent trend in policy that includes the 2014 revision of “Japan Revitalization Strategy – Japan is Back” (approved by the Cabinet on June 24th, 2014). The ultimate aim is to vitalize the Japanese economy further and enhance Japan’s presence in the global economy.
Through seminars, events and other activities, the Program will strengthen the system of connecting international students and other foreign nationals looking for employment in Japan, with companies in Japan looking to recruit international employees.

For International students

Useful web site for International students

2) Job-hunting report

 Kin Koubai

Name : Kin Koubai
Nationality : Chinese
University in Japan : Ferris University
Major : Department of English Literature
Period of company : April 2003 to March 2009
Name of company : HMUGENUP Inc.
Japanese proficiency level : Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

My grandmother used to study in a Japanese elementary school and speaks Japanese. When I was a kindergarten student, she taught me the song Gardenia. At that time, for me, Japanese sound was fresh. (I could still sing that song until now.) From this experience, I chose Japanese as my first foreign language at junior high school. So it’s just natural that I chose Japan as the country to study.

I studied both Japanese and English in Japan. Believing that combining my academic knowledge with social experience would be a great part of building a future career, I decided to have a job in Japan. Also, Japan is a country that many companies operate in a global scale. This gave me another reason to work in Japan since I would like to play an active role globally.

After graduating in the university, I worked in the sales department of a trading company. For the first time through work, I felt how hard cross-cultural communication was. The company had about 1,000 workers, and I was the only foreigner that time. I had to deal with a “wall” which was not about language differences but about the difficulty in understanding each other’s culture and the underlying organizational management. That experience made me interested in organizational management that uses global human recourses well and makes best use of synergy.

I am currently working at COACH A Co., Ltd. whose aim is to make the best use of organizational performance through coaching support for leadership development in order to reform the working culture and achieve one company’s goal. I provide coaching services to create new business development, which focuses on major companies operating globally, and to develop leadership. Currently, I’m doing coaching for Japanese, Chinese, and Korean leaders of major companies in different languages.

On job-hunting, analyzing a company in detail and understanding yourself well as such that you can tell your strengths and weaknesses with confidence are effective ways. The purpose of job-hunting is not only about getting a job but also to work in the company you’re interested in for a long time with a long-term vision. If you have an image of yourself growing in the company you will join, you can connect your career more to your personal growth.

When writing an entry sheet, it is important to write an account in which the company can have an image of their company’s success if they hire you. Choosing simple words is also important. Recruiter is looking at many entry sheets during recruitment, so you have to write an entry sheet that will make them want to see you right away.

3) Job Hunting Information Corner

Ceremony for prospective employees will be held after October 1

Most Japanese companies will have a ceremony for prospective employees in early October. According to the guidelines on employment screening published by the Japan Business Federation, whose members include major companies, companies can offer job officially only after October 1. So the ceremony serves as the companies’ formal event for students who were promised with unofficial job offers through the employment screening. The reasons for conducting this ceremony are to let students have the actual feeling and motivation to work, to prevent students from declining job offer, and to create connection among employees and to relieve the anxiety before entering. There are many merits to have the ceremony for prospective employees, but not every company has it since it’s not necessary.

The ceremony has merits as mentioned above, so most company would like to finish screening process before the ceremony.

To those students who are still doing job-hunting, this year’s recruiting is not easy for companies and after the ceremony, there would still be companies who will continue their recruitment. So don’t give up and keep moving.

5. Visit Japan

Tochigi prefecture

Have you been travelling around Japan? In this section, we bring you information about sights, events, and foods from all over the country! The October edition looks at Tochigi prefecture.


Nikko Toshogu Shrine is the shrine that is dedicated to Tokugawa Ieyasu. Most of all shrines there are designated as national treasures and nationally important cultural properties. It was also registered as a World Heritage Site in 1999.
Located directly north of Edo Castle (now Imperial Palace), its site is important in strengthening the defense in the said direction. The shrine complex is popular as a power spot with lots of good fortune and energy found through feng shui and yin and yang.

Ashikaga Flower Park

It has four big wisterias and an 80-m tunnel surrounded with white wisterias and was designated as a natural treasure of Tochigi prefecture. Over a million people visit here to see many flowers throughout the seasons all year round. In 2014, CNN selected this place as among the “10 Dream Destinations for 2014.” During the winter season (late October – early February) when flowers do not bloom, an illumination called “Garden of Brilliant Flowers” is presented. It is a large-scale illumination with about 3 million lights, and was designated as one of the “three major illuminations in Kanto” by YAKEI Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Utsunomiya City has about 30 dumpling shops and holds the No. 1 place for having the highest amount spent on dumplings per household for 15 years in a row since 2010. Dumplings has been popular in Utsunomiya City after the 14th army division dispatched troops to China and discovered the dumplings. When they came back to the city, it started to spread. It is also said that Utsunomiya City is hot in summer and cold in winter, so dumplings got popular in order to get stamina. Every November, there is a festival called “Utsunomiya Dumpling Festival.” With over 140 thousand visitors, it plays an important role for local economic revitalization.

Mashiko-yaki pottery

Mashiko-yaki pots are made in Mashiko-machi, Haga-gun in Tochigi. The origin of this pottery can be traced back to Keisaburo Otsuka who built a kiln and trained pottery in Kasama around 1850. It’s characterized by its sandy and lumpy texture, distinctive heavy color, and thickness. Using clay from Mashiko, and kaki-yu and namijiro-yu glazes that are unique to the area, this pottery is created with traditional techniques like glaze dripping resulting to its vibrant beauty and warm feel. It was designated as a Japanese traditional craft in 1979.


In the latter half of the year 1100, Minamoto no Yoritomo established the Kamakura Shogunate (samurai government). From April 2-23 of the following year, Yoritomo led a large-scale hunting around Nasunogahara to show his power. This hunt is called “Nasunomakigari,” and it is said that over 100,000 “seko” (beater) joined. At the Nasunomakigari Festival, you can see shows such as “Makigari-taiko (drum)” and “Makigari-odori (dance)” and try the wild “Makigari-nabe” dish, which is a recreation of the food during that time, cooked in a big pot that is 2.2 meters in diameter.

6. NIPPON Information

This section features enjoyable stories about pop culture, traditions, dining, cutting-edge technology, and more!

1) NIPPON Time Machine


Halloween is the festival held every October 31. Its origin is considered to be of ancient Celts. It was used to be celebrated as a harvest and religious event to cast out evil spirits, but now it is known as a popular event having no religious significance in the United States.

In Japan, the variety store Kiddy Land in Harajuku held in 1983 its first costume parade, which is being considered as the beginning of Halloween in the country. Since 1997, Tokyo Disneyland has been holding the event “Disney’s Halloween,” which gained immediate recognition. After that, there are many costume parades with tens of thousands of people in various places. On Halloween, many people are out wearing zombie, witch, and anime character costumes in downtown areas such as Shibuya and Roppongi recently. It is now considered as an autumn fun event. There are two cultural factors why Halloween has become popular in Japan. One is Japan’s liberal acceptance of Western culture; second is its unique cosplay culture.

Adding to these two factors are the mobilizing power of the SNS and commercial elements, centered on theme parks, food industries, department stores, and shopping arcades. The economic effect of Halloween accounts to a hundred billion yen.

2) Lifestyle Information

Autumn colors of leaves

Autumn colors of leaves
Autumn is a season of “leaf viewing.” It is one of the two major outdoor events along with the cherry blossom viewing in spring. “Leaf viewing” is a form of leisure where you enjoy looking at the changing color of leaves into red and yellow in autumn. Koyou“colored leaves in English” has two ways of reading. One is “Momiji” which means maple leaf, and one is “Ko-yo” which means the changing color of leaves before its fall. In Japan, people have enjoyed leaf viewing for more than 1,200 years. Manyoshu, the oldest anthology of Japanese poetry, includes poems about the beauty of the autumn colors of leaves. The autumn color of leaves in Europe and the United States is mainly yellow but autumn colors of leaves in Japan are red, green, and yellow. The color contrast creates a more emotional and touching visual scene. Autumn deciduous trees in Japan have 26 kinds, which is the most number of species in the world. Maple in Canada has 13 species while Europe has 13; yet the variety of colors is not as abundant. The reason why Japan has many deciduous broad-leaved trees lies during the Ice Age when trees survived and were protected by the warm coastline and landscape with its many uphills and downhills. You can do leaf viewing all over Japan. Why don’t you enjoy it to see the beautiful autumn colors of the leaves?

7. JASSO News

Information about JASSO Scholarship programs, invitation program, Japan Education Fairs, and the Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU).

1) Schedule, etc. for 2016 Japan Education Fairs

JASSO holds Japan Education Fairs overseas to provide information to high school students, university students and other individuals who are interested in studying in Japan. We also attend and cooperate to the events and seminars sponsored by other organizations.

2) Information about the “Student Guide to Japan”

For all those considering studying in Japan, we recommend you to read the “Student Guide to Japan” first.
In addition to information on the Japanese education system, scholarships, and daily life in Japan, the guidebook also includes stories on experience of international students in Japan.
You can read the guidebook on the JASSO website, so we encourage not only those who are considering studying in Japan, but also students already studying in Japan to take a look.

You can read in 14 languages such as Japanese, English, Chinese (Simplified Chinese and traditional Chinese), Korean, Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese, Myanmar language and Bengali, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, French, German, Mongolian, and Portuguese.

3) Official Facebook pages of JASSO and Overseas Representative Offices

We also provide the latest information on studying in Japan on our official Facebook pages. Check them out!

4) Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU)

5) JASSO Scholarship programs

6) Web Magazine “Ryugakukoryu”

The October 2016 issue will be published on October 11th. Please make sure to read it!

7) Follow-up Research Fellowship (Invitation Program)

This program provides former international students who play active roles in education, research and government in their home countries to conduct short term research at universities in Japan.

8) Follow-up Research Guidance (Dispatching research advisors)

This program provides Japanese academic advisors with an opportunity to visit and to help further research of former international students who are teaching and/or researching at universities or research institutes in their home countries.

8. From the Editor

How did you find the October edition of Japan Alumni e-mail newsletter? October is autumn in Japan. As we mentioned in the Lifestyle Information corner, it is said that the autumn color of Japan is the most beautiful in the world. Many tourists come and visit Japan to see it every year. You can see beautiful sceneries especially at temples, gardens, canyons, and mountains. Please enjoy the autumn of Japan by visiting the nearest autumn leaves spot.

Japan Alumni eNews Editorial Desk is looking for someone who can share their job searching experiences. We also welcome pictures from your life abroad as an exchange student and your comments for our email magazine. Our next issue of “Japan Alumni eNews” will be distributed on November 10th. Don’t miss it!

  • Information in this issue may change without notice. Please visit their web sites for latest information.


Follow-up Services Unit, International Scholarship Division, Student Exchange Department Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO)
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