Name: Josephine Weymon
Location of Study: Tokyo, Japan
Program of Study: International Christian University
Sponsors: Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures and the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies
A brief personal bio:
I am a junior with a major in Japanese and a minor in Education, Schooling, and Society. I’m the sort of person to prefer a quiet get together with friends over a sprawling night at the club, and I tend to daydream often. I love learning and helping others learn, hence the minor in Education, and I hope to be a teacher someday. I’d like to teach English to Japanese students in Japan, but ultimately I want to pursue advanced degrees in linguistics especially regarding second language acquisition.
Why this summer language abroad opportunity is important to me:
I believe immersing yourself in a target language’s culture is the only way to become fluent in a language. Additionally, I am very interested in Japanese culture, and the nuances thereof can only be learned through experience. As such, I would love to visit Japan to enhance both my language skills as well as my understanding of Japanese culture. However, this never seemed within reach for me simply due to financial barriers. I will be honest in saying I would not be able to go to attend ICU’s program without the generosity of the SLA donors. Even the plane tickets would be difficult for me to acquire otherwise.
What I hope to achieve as a result of this summer study abroad experience:
I think it will be a great experience to throw myself outside of my comfort zone for a month and a half. I generally prefer suburban to rural areas over urban, so I think experiencing Tokyo will be a beneficial challenge. I hope to test how well I can adapt to foreign situations while also being mindful of the domestic culture of Japan. Additionally, I want to improve my Japanese skills, of course. I hope that by the end of my study abroad experience I will be comfortable enough with Japanese to speak conversationally while also utilizing more advanced grammatical structures.
My specific learning goals for language and intercultural learning this summer:
1. At the end of the summer, I will reach a conversational proficiency in Japanese.
2. At the end of the summer, I will be able to use Japanese casual speech comfortably.
3. At the end of the summer, I will have working experience with the Japanese transportation system in Tokyo, something I am acutely interested in.
My plan for maximizing my international language learning experience: