Kevin Princic '15
Studying Abroad at the Japan Center for Michigan Universities
Studying abroad at the japan Center for Michigan Universities (JCMU) was a very valuable experience for me. Every day we had three hours of Japanese classes in the morning with an elective class once a week in the afternoon. I found this schedule to be very beneficial to my Japanese studies. It gave me plenty of time to do all of the work I was assigned and also manage to go out and have some fun. Many students are discouraged from JCMU because it is a language intensive program, but with the way the schedules are structured, I always had time to travel and experience new things.
I especially enjoyed the cultural activities at JCMU. We got to experience things such as tea ceremonies, martial arts, traditional Japanese music, flower arranging and even calligraphy among other things. These activities were always interesting and very enjoyable.
On the weekends I always had a lot of free time to travel around Japan. I found myself going to Kyoto almost every other weekend and I went to Osaka a few times as well. JCMU is located in Hikone in the Kansai region which gives students access to some of Japan’s greatest cities.
My experiences in Japan were truly great. I met many wonderful friends and great experiences that I won’t soon forget. I highly recommend this program.
Internship Opportunities at JCMU
One very unique aspect of JCMU, besides the intensive language program, is their internship program. I did an internship for an elevator company called Fujitec, which was one of the many options JCMU offered. Some students interned in a local sweet shop to improve their formal Japanese while others went to high schools to student teach English. My experience allowed me to practice my very formal Japanese and learn how Japanese businesses work. During my internship, I worked with a Fujitec employee to arrange a factory tour for JCMU students. I also corresponded with him in Japanese and wrote an official request for the tour using business Japanese. I really learned a lot from my experiences at Fujitec.