Report from Students

Report Entry


Study Abroad Report (2015 inbound: Thammasat University)

My Experience in Japan

My name is Teerawat Patamalai and I came to Japan as a foreign exchange student through the AIMS program. I have been living in Osaka City, Japan for the past four months, and during these months, I have attended Ritsumeikan University at their new OIC Campus. For me, life in Japan is different in many ways compared to my native country, Thailand.

Here in Japan, people are very polite and peaceful. The streets were very clean and the public transportation system was well built and efficient. I would like to deepen the relationship with my new friends in Japan further so that I can become a person that represents my generation.

I can still remember my first day here in Japan. It was filled with an air of excitement and curiosity that I’ve never felt before, and despite seeing things for four months, I still feel that it is not enough and that the air of excitement and curiosity still lingers around me.

I like the AIMS program very much. Most of the classes I took were small, so it was easy to have close student-teacher, as well as friend-friend relationship. I love my life in Japan. I truly hope that one day I will have the chance to come back and experience Japan again. I know that the knowledge and language skills that I gained here in Japan will be beneficial in my future profession.


Study Abroad Report (2015 inbound: Universitas Indonesia)

Surya Aditama Mahardika
Universitas Indonesia

First of all, I would like to say how thankful I am to have this amazing opportunity. Words cannot describe how honored I feel to have been selected as one of the AIMS participants. To be able to study in Japan might be one of the best things that has ever happened to me in my life. I have learned so many things I have learned while living here. Through the courses I gained so much knowledge that I might not be able to learn at my home university. I took some courses such as Gaming Simulation Method, International PBL seminar, Ecology, etc. One of my favorites was International Accounting. It was really interesting for me because I learned subjects which have strong correlation with Japan’s economy.

I had the chance to join the Tennis club. It was so much fun to be among them. They were so friendly and kind. They were so eager to teach me so many things about Japan and its culture. From them, I learned great values such as dream big, be highly motivated, and more. I am also amazed by how much Japanese people value nature and time.

Living in Japan also made me realize several differences between my country and Japan. Growing up in Indonesia, people made me believe that Indonesians were very friendly. However, when I finally came to Japan, I realized that my people were not nearly what people would call “being friendly”. Whenever I wanted to go somewhere, Japanese people, mostly old ladies, would ask me if I was lost and if I needed directions. One lady that I had never met before even gave me her umbrella when she saw me burnt under Japanese sun. ; One thing that I know for sure is that never happen in my country. They seem to always be eager to help others, even when they know it might bother them. That is only one of the many things that impressed me. Sometimes I found it difficult to communicate because my Japanese friends were quiet, but I know it’s only because they worry about saying the wrong thing or hurting someone’s feeling.

All in all, Japan is a great country that I learned so much having lived and studied in one of the most prestigious universities there. I am very grateful that I could experience amazing things through this program. My expectation for the prospective students is that I wish they could enjoy their stay in their destined countries. I would like them to choose subjects that they like and be conscious about it. Studying is, of course, the most important, but being active in several club/activities is not insignificant either. Getting to know the people would be a good way to get to know the culture. I hope this can be helpful for future students. I also believe this program will benefit me in the future.


Activity Report 1 (2015 outbound: Universitas Gadjah Mada)

Masashi Umemoto
College of International Relations, 2nd year

Campus life

The University of Gadjah Mada is one of the top universities in Indonesia, so  many of the students here are very intelligent. Especially when it comes to FEB, the Faculty of Economics and Business, where all of the classes are held in English. The  language barrier leads to a great, educational experience. Almost all of the students are thinking about becoming entrepreneurs after graduation. Some of them have already started their own business, even though they are still freshman. You can see and understand their strategies and plans for the future.

Students are not only involved in academics, but they also belong to clubs. I ‘m a part of the softball club here, and teach freshmen how to play. Although some members can’t speak English at all, it is awesome to see them improve. This club also motivates me to study Indonesian to better communicate and teach softball.

Additionally, I’ve noticed that a lot of people love Japanese culture and language. For example, many students come to the Japanese class that I am teaching even though they receive no credit for taking the class. Also, the University of Gadjah Mada has Japan week once a month! You can eat various kinds of Japanese food there, and so many students are cosplaying. I’m sure that your experience at Ritsumeikan University can benefit the people of Yogyakarta (Jogja).


Activity Report 1 (2015 outbound: Chulalongkorn University)

Kenta Imaizumi
College of Business Administration, 3rd year

Hello everyone! My name is Kenta Imaizumi, and I am studying in the Faculty of Arts at Chulalongkorn University in Thailand as an exchange student through the PBL program. I started to study here from the beginning of August, and two months have passed since I started living here in the international dormitory called “CU I House.” Today, I would like to tell you about my life here in the dormitory and the atmosphere around the CU I House and the University. 

Firstly, my dormitory is located right next to the campus! It only takes 5 minutes to get to the campus by CU shuttle bus, and it takes 20 minutes to walk to Siam, which is central Bangkok. Although I am sharing my room with a Japanese roommate, there are other types of rooms, such as for one person, two people, or even a family. My dormitory is quite new and has many facilities and services, such as a study room, dining room, and 24-hour maintenance services.  A big difference between Japan and Thailand, in regards to dormitories and apartments in Thailand, is that there is no kitchen. When it comes to college students in Japan, cooking for ourselves is common, however, students in Thailand do not usually cook for themselves. Because of this, there are many restaurants and stands that are selling cheap and delicious food for students around the University. I usually eat from stands serving food around the dormitory. When I went to this kind of stand for the first time, its appearance was a bit scary, but I am getting used to it now!

When it comes to the atmosphere around campus, as I mentioned before, there are many restaurants and stands nearby making it a vivid and lively place. Also, the central Bangkok area, Siam, is surrounded by businesses and facilities, giving you an atmosphere of the latest and greatest.

During the rest of my time studying abroad in Thailand, I want to adapt to life in here and interact with other international students through the international environment provided by the CU I House!


Activity Report 1 (2015 outbound: Institut Teknologi Bandung)

Hiroya Suefuji
College of Business Administration, 3rd year

Hello, my name is Hiroya Suefuji and I would like to describe college life at the Institut Teknologi Bandung in Indonesia. I was surprised in regards to students' English ability, especially their ability to speak when I first came to this university. On the other hand, most Indonesian people in Bandung cannot speak as much English as the students can. Because of this, I use a little Indonesian and body language to communicate. Also, there are many group activities in classes. I have to concentrate in class and be a part of the class. When I joined a group activity in class, I felt that ITB students are very smart because they make quick, high quality decisions. I need to catch up with them before I return to Japan. Life in Indonesia is very exciting for me!

ITB students are very kind and friendly when they communicate with me. I also learn a lot of Indonesian playing futsal with my friends, talking in the cafeteria, meeting people in the smoking area, and so on. When we play futsal, we can become closer and talk about anything! Also, I can make new friends every day. On the other hand, it’s difficult to remember their names because I meet so many new people and the pronunciation is very difficult. I truly enjoy this activity.
I thought that the Muslim religion was very strict before I came to Indonesia, however, Indonesian men love joking around just like Japanese people do! When I tell them about Japanese culture, habits, and everyday life, they are surprised and interested. This gives me a chance to communicate with people often.

I want to communicate with many Indonesian people as much as possible and go to many places, because I want to learn more about Indonesia. Above all, I will study management as much as I can. It’s not easy studying management in English, but I’m sure that I’ll improve as a person through this experience. I’ll do my best to learn as much as possible during my time here at the Institut Teknologi Bandung!


Activity Report 1 (2015 outbound: Thammasat University)

Erika Kondo
College of Economics, 4th year

My Points of Improvement

Two months have passed since I came to Thailand as an exchange student.  I can feel how fast these 2 months have already flown by, but I still have 2 more months to go! I would like to describe how I am growing as person through this program and how amazing the food is.

1 My Happiness
I would like to tell you about my experience here using “foods”. I love eating so much that my friends say, “You always look happy when you eat!” So for me, Thailand food is like the Japanese saying, “ichi-go ichi-e”, meaning to “treasure every encounter”.  There are so many different kinds of ingredients and food to try! It helps me to enjoy trying new things. If I leave my room, I have the chance to try traditional Thai food, completely different than what I ate it in Japan. Also, the  same food doesn’t always have the same taste because the university cafeteria, restaurants, and street venders have their own styles and flavors. That’s why it is fun to try new places, meet new people, and  try various foods! I feel fortunate that I get to taste food that Thai people eat every day. Going out to eat with my Thai friends shows me what food is popular. However, at the same time, I keep in mind how delicious Japanese food is. Studying abroad in Thailand has shown me how important it is to try something new because it helped me gain experience and knowledge. These 2 months taught me what it means to be beyond borders.

2 My Kindness
I  like street venders in Thailand, and I love trying different ones often! It gives me the opportunity to speak the Thai that I learned in class. I never give up, even if I make a mistake! There are not many foreigners in Thailand, however, I’ve found that Thai people have a strict but kind way of communicating. Through this experience, I feel that I can show more kindness towards others. When I feel helpless, I remember everyone’s compassion and it gives me peace of mind.



Activity Report 1 (2015 outbound: Universitas Indonesia)

Takuro Maeda
College of Business Administration, 4th year

Apa kabar? `Apa kabar` means how are you in Indonesian. Hello, my name is Takuro Maeda, and I am studying at the Universitas Indonesia through the AIMS study abroad program. I am currently in my senior year studying Business Administration at Ritsumeikan University in Osaka, Ibaraki. I would like to describe to you my everyday life in Depok. To give you a better idea, I will use 4 examples: Margo City, Moffee, Traffic Jams, and the dormitory.

Depok is a city of Jakarta, and is very, very big. In Depok, you can get anything and everything what you need. I think that Depok is convenient because it is a big city. One example of its convenience is a large shopping mall called Margo City in Depok. The Margo city shopping mall is about a 10 minute walk from the dorm. There are a lot of students there because it’s located near other universities as well. I also go there to get things over the weekend.

As you may already know, Indonesia is one of the biggest coffee producers and exporters in the world. I enjoy a nice café to drink coffee and relax. Here in Depok there are some really good cafés. My favorite is called “Moffee”. I like the taste of their coffee, and also the atmosphere. This is one of my favorite places in Indonesia. I go here around 3 times in a week, and the owner is really nice.

From now, I would like to introduce one of Jakarta’s most famous problems, traffic. Before I came here, I learned about basic business logistics at Ritsumeikan University. So of course I knew about Jakarta’s traffic jams, but actually it’s even worse than I could have imagined. I still remember the first day that I came here. It was rush hour, so there were tons of cars, bikes, and people! My Indonesian friend told to me, “Around here, it can be very dangerous. Car accidents happen often, should be careful ya!” That is when I realized how important it is to pay attention. There is a lot of traffic just in front of the dorm, so if you come here, please pay attention and take traffic seriously.

Lastly, I would like to describe the dormitory. It’s called “Margonda Residence Dua” and is really nice. The room is not that huge, but I like how clean it is. Also it’s located near Universitas Indonesia, so it is very convenient. There is a swimming pool, but I have never gone swimming in it…maybe I will later.
Today I described my everyday life in Depok, but there is so much more to explore here. Next month I plan on writing more about “Campus Life at Universitas Indonesia”! See you later.


Study Abroad Report (2016 inbound: Institut Teknologi Bandung)

Ellian Jaisy Rahman
Institut Teknologi Bandung

Yo! Minna san Konnichiwa, I am Jaisy. I’m really proud to say that I am living in Japan now as an exchange student from the Institut Teknologi Bandung in Indonesia at one of the most exciting campuses in Japan, or even in the world, Ritsumeikan University OIC (Osaka Ibaraki Campus). I have a wonderful story to tell you, so prepare a cup of tea and relax in your favorite garden, as I hope the story of my adventures, experiences, and feelings inspires you.

Let me first bring you to the story of my studies. I took the Problem Based Learning classes (PBL) with Professor Toyoda, Professor Francis, and Professor Piyada. These classes taught me a lot and really opened up my mind about many aspects in the global perspective, which I think all international students should have in their way of thinking nowadays. To be honest, these professors are very interesting, and make the classes even more fun to attend. Professor Toyoda has really cool Japanese hair and a great teaching style, Professor Francis has a broad experience about Japanese jokes about daily life, and I will not forget when Professor Piyada asked me to help her find the famous drama film in Indonesia “Ayat Ayat Cinta” for her other class teaching material at Ritsumeikan University. Summing up all of my other classes that I took, which are related to special topics on international business management and strategy, I find myself speechless and amazed with the learning methods, environment, and of course the super modern study facility at Ritsumeikan OIC. Two of my favorite professors are Professor Miyata and Professor Raupach. They give me interesting, deep analyses and insight of international business in the best way through storytelling in their classes.

Now, let’s jump into the most interesting part that I want to tell in my story, Japan. Trust me, Japanese students at Ritsumeikan are the most modest and kind people I have ever met, especially all of the TISA members, the tutors for international students assembly. Even from the first day I came to Japan with heavy luggage, taking care of the confusing Japanese residence card at city hall, to the amazing adventure of exploring Ibaraki city - EXPO’70 park event, they are always ready and by my side to ensure that I can adjust to life in Japan and truly help me enjoy my time here. Of course TISA is not the only thing that amazes me! I’ve made hundreds of great new friends at this campus, both Japanese students and International students from the USA, France, Sweden, Norway, Russia, Korea, China, Mexico, Iraq, and many more. I joined some student circles and events, such as being the International Student Ambassador of Ritsumeikan University, Talkfest, SUP, COSMEDIA, and many more.

Talking about my daily life in Japan, of course I would bring up some of the cultural and social aspects that I feel here. No wonder Japan is famous in the international society. One of my Thailand and USA friends once told me at the campus cafeteria when we had lunch together, “Japan is a surprise everyday …”. I’ve witnessed and been impressed by Japan’s hygiene, time punctuality, work spirit, interpersonal respect, modern technology, as well as local wisdom which are what Japanese people hold dear in their society.

Whoever is reading my story, you are so lucky that you have a fruitful chance in your beautiful life to get in touch and create an everlasting moment at Ritsumeikan University. This campus will show you that it is worth it to explore life. Don’t get stuck with what you have only known until now, at Ritsumeikan you will find not only a strong root for global knowledge, but also precious moments, unforgettable encounters, and unexpected things that might change your life and the way you see the world. If you asked me what I have found in Japan, just remember this quote, “there is always a sky beyond those starry skies”. See you in Osaka, Japan at Ritsumeikan University guys!


Study Abroad Report (2016 inbound: Chulalongkorn University)

Anakavee Termsinsuk
Chulalongkorn University

Hello! My name is Anakavee Termsinsuk, or Vee, as people usually call me. I am currently studying in the College of International Relations at Ritsumeikan University. Through the AIMS program, I have acquired priceless knowledge, experience, and memories, which I will always cherish.

In terms of academic experience, classes here have offered me the chance to take a look at my own country and culture from a different perspective by comparing it to other countries. Global Simulation Gaming (GSG) is one of the recommended classes for AIMS students and I am glad that I decided to take it. The fun challenge that I inevitably have to take on is explaining Thailand’s situation in terms of politics and international relations to Japanese students who are not familiar with it.

Additionally, the Special Lecture classes which was also recommended for AIMS students has become something that I look forward to every week. Through student presentations, I have learned a lot about Indonesian and Japanese culture. We always have lively discussions in class regarding the difference between our cultures and how people of each country will react to certain problems or matters in different ways. I also learn a lot about Thai culture through questions about Thailand which were asked by classmates as well. As I tried to answer them, I realized that I have taken many aspects of Thai culture for granted. These classes give me a chance to gain more understanding and appreciation of my own culture, as well as the others, which is something that I am very thankful for.

Aside from the classes, living in Japan brings new challenges and excitement everyday. Going grocery shopping and cooking with friends is something that I was not able to experience in my home country. Traveling around Kyoto and the Kansai region by bus and train makes me realize that the convenience of public transportation can unexpectedly cause confusion. It’s easy to go anywhere by bus and train, but it’s also as easy to get lost. However, the kindness of Japanese people always helps me find my way back home, and I can’t express how much Japan has impressed me.

Through the participation of the AIMS program, I have the opportunity to communicate with people from all over the world and my perspective has widened greatly through interactions with people from other cultures, both inside and outside of class. The experience is invaluable and will certainly help me grow as a person, and I will make sure to make the best out of my time left here at Ritsumeikan University!


Study Abroad Report (2016 inbound: Universitas Indonesia)

Anselma Widha Prihandita
Universitas Indonesia


Hi! My name is Anselma Widha Prihandita. People usually call me Widha. I am an English literature student at Universitas Indonesia, but for the past 5 months I’ve been studying International Relations at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, through the AIMS exchange program. This student exchange experience has given me so many lessons, not only academic lessons, but also practical lessons for life at large. (P.S. It’s also a lot of fun!)

When I first stepped into the land of the rising sun, my first impression was how clean and orderly Japan was. This was a stark contrast to my home country Indonesia and my hometown Jakarta, which is famed for its sprawling urban areas and traffic-jammed streets. Shortly after, as I took more steps into Japan, I encountered a toilet which has very different norms of usage from Indonesian toilets (you can flush the toilet paper into the toilet?), and thus got my first taste of culture shock.

Don’t worry about culture shock, though. When you come to live in Japan, the culture shock that you experience will mostly come in the form of wonder and amazement, with some eyebrow-raising moments when you encounter Japan’s various quirkiness. It’s more fun than shocking, really. Japan is a very advanced and orderly country, but in spite of that, it remains beautiful, comfortable, and surprisingly friendly. You will be amazed at how technology can exist side by side with beautiful and well-preserved nature, how modernity can accommodate traditions, and how in spite of the rigid discipline employed by Japanese people, they are still so polite, warm, and caring, especially towards confused fresh-off-the-boat foreigner like me. I have learned from Japan that you can have the best of both worlds: development and nature, modernity and tradition, professionalism and warmth.

But the best thing of my student exchange experience is probably the global environment provided by Ritsumeikan University. In the dormitory, Ritsumeikan International House Taishogun, I was able to taste the wonderful experience of living with people from various countries with various cultures. Only by cooking together, watching movies, playing games, or having casual chit-chats in daily life, you can get so many insights about the world outside, about other countries and cultures that you have never lived in. I learned that people actually have more in common although they come from different countries. It is far easier to make friends with them than to turn them into enemies, if only we keep an open mind. Furthermore, in the classroom, you can also get the same multicultural experience, because the classes in Ritsumeikan actually have students from many countries, not only Japan. This makes discussions in class more interesting, as you are able to discuss an issue from more varied perspective, drawing from the experiences of different people.
From all the classes that I have taken, the two Special Lecture classes that I have with Tomomi-sensei are probably the most impressive to me. In these Problem-Based Learning classes, which is exclusive for AIMS students, we learn about social and cultural issues in Indonesia, Thailand, and Japan. Because of the nature of the class, I was encouraged to learn about specific issues in Indonesia, propose solutions to those issues, and then share my findings to the class and discuss those with them. As a result, at the end of the course, I got my most valuable lesson yet: a deeper understanding of and reinforced tie with my home country, Indonesia. I found that although Indonesia has much to learn from other countries, we also have a lot of things to be proud of. I think that I wouldn’t have gotten this realization if I hadn’t experienced this multicultural, problem-based learning that Ritsumeikan provides.

Aside from all the valuable life lessons that you can get through this student exchange program, there are also plenty opportunities to have fun. Hangouts with friends are always just a few steps towards the dorm’s kitchen and lounge, and of course there are a gazillion places to visit and matsuri to attend, especially if you live in Kyoto. Go out. Travel. Visit a thousand temples. Wear a yukata. See a geisha dance. Climb a mountain. Walk on nightingale floors in centuries-old castles. All these you can do, and more. Remember that every moment can be a lesson, not only in classrooms, but also in every step you take in places you’ve never been. And this is the perfect opportunity to be anywhere you’ve never been, experience everything you’ve never experienced. Good luck and have fun!



Study Abroad Report (2016 inbound: Thammasat University)

Tacha Chitrattana-a-nan
Thammasat University

Sawatdee ka, Konnichi ha, Hello! My name is Tacha Chitrattana-a-nan or you can call me Jull. I am an economics student from Thammasat University. I also had the wonderful opportunity to be an international relations student of Ritsumeikan University for one semester through the AIMS program (ASEAN International Mobility of Students). All my experience in Japan is very important and precious to me.

At Ritsumeikan University’s Kinugasa campus, I enrolled in two special classes that you can only find at Ritsumeikan University. The first class is GSG or Global Simulation Gaming. As the class title describes, this class is the simulation of the world’s current problems based on the theme of each year, and this year was about Security Issues. Since I have not studied international relations before, enrolling in this class was very challenging for me. The actual GSG class is a lot more fun that I thought. I am very glad that I took this class, not only for the new knowledge that I got, but also the group work with students from all over the world. The second class is a special lecture where students who participated and will participate in AIMS and PBL programs are recommended to take. Through the presentation of different perspectives by Japanese, Korean, Indonesian and Thai students, my opinion and point of view have changed a lot. It is a great class that helps you to adapt with the country you are visiting and gives you the opportunity to look back on your own country’s problems or point of views.

There are also some special activities for foreign students arranged by student clubs or the university. I attended one of the activities arranged by TISA, it was about Japanese make up styles. It was very interesting and useful! They also gave you a discount for a hair salon. Other than that, they also have language activities, either in Japanese or other languages. There is a partner program which you can learn other languages too. If you have any chance, please register for this program. I think it is very useful!

I stayed in the Ritsumeikan University I-House Taishogun dorm which is located in Kyoto and not far from campus. I was very excited because this was my first time to stay in the dorm. The room, kitchen and bathroom were very nice and clean. Also the staff were very helpful when I had any problems. There is also a piano in multipurpose room which I like the most because I did not expect that the university dorm would have any instruments. Since the dorm is not far from the university, you can walk or ride a bicycle to get there. There are convenient stores and supermarkets nearby and also train stations which makes it an even better place to stay!

Kyoto is an amazing city, even though most of it has been developed for tourism. Compared to other cities, I think Kyoto is the best city to travel around. Not only the city, but also my time at the dorm which I spent with my friends was very fascinating. This exchange program has opened and changed my perspective a lot. All of these experience and memories will never fade away and I will cherish them with all my heart. I hope it will support me in the future. Thank you to all the staff from both Thammasat and Ritsumeikan, the dorm managers, the teachers and professors, and friends that I have met during this program. Without you, I wouldn’t have been able to have these wonderful experiences. Lastly, thank you for reading about my story and experiences. I hope you enjoy your time in Kyoto too!


รายงานการศึกษาในต่างประเทศ (เมื่อปี 2016: จากจุฬาลงกรณ์มหาวิทยาลัย)

นางสาว อณรรฆวีร์ เติมสินสุข

สวัสดีค่ะ ฉันชื่ออณรรฆวีร์ เติมสินสุข ตอนนี้กำลังศึกษาอยู่ ณ College of International Relations มหาวิทยาลัย Ritsumeikan ผ่านทางโครงการ AIMS (Asian International Mobility for Students) แม้จะยังไม่จบโครงการ แต่ช่วงเวลาที่ผ่านมาก็ทำให้ฉันได้รับความรู้และประสบการณ์อันประเมินค่าไม่ได้

โครงการนี้ทำให้ฉันได้คิดทบทวนและลองมองวัฒนธรรมของประเทศไทยจากมุมมองใหม่ๆ หนึ่งในวิชาที่ทางโครงการแนะนำให้ผู้เข้าร่วมโครงการลงทะเบียนเรียนคือ Global Simulation Gaming (GSG) ซึ่งนักเรียนจะจับกลุ่มและสวมบทบาทเป็นประเทศต่างๆ หรือองค์กรนานาชาติ โดยนักเรียนจะต้องศึกษาสถานการณ์ในประเทศดังกล่าวหรือนโยบายการต่างกระเทศให้เข้าใจ และสวมบทบาทให้สมจริง โดยทุกคนจะได้มีโอกาสพูดคุยและต่อรองกับประเทศและองค์กรต่างๆ ในสถานการณ์จำลอง ซึ่งกลุ่มของฉันรับบทเป็นประเทศไทย แม้การพูดคุยเรื่องสถานการณ์ทางด้านการเมืองและความสัมพันธ์ระหว่างประเทศด้วยภาษาอังกฤษและภาษาญี่ปุ่นแบบกะท่อนกะแท่นนั้นไม่ใช่เรื่องง่าย แต่มันก็คุ้มค่าและสนุกเมื่อมันทำให้เพื่อนคนญี่ปุ่นสามารถเข้าใจสังคมไทยได้มากขึ้นอีกแม้เพียงนิด

Special Lecture เป็นอีกวิชาที่ทางโครงการแนะนำให้ลง ซึ่งจะมีสองตัวได้แก่ Core Related และ Area Studies เพื่อนร่วมชั้นเรียนได้แก่ผู้เข้าร่วมโครงการ AIMS จากไทยและอินโดนีเชีย รวมไปถึงคนญี่ปุ่นเช่นกัน ทั้งสองวิชาทำให้ฉันได้เรียนรู้วัฒนธรรมไทยใหม่อีกครั้ง รวมไปถึงวัฒนธรรมของอินโดนีเซียและญี่ปุ่นด้วย การเรียนการสอนส่วนมากเป็นการนำเสนอของนักเรียนและการแลกเปลี่ยนความเห็น ซึ่งการได้ฟังเรื่องเกี่ยวกับวัฒนธรรมหนึ่งจากคนในวัฒนธรรมนั้นช่างน่าสนใจ มันทำให้ฉันเข้าใจความคิดและตัวตนของเพื่อนๆ ต่างประเทศมากขึ้น รวมไปถึงประเทศของพวกเขาในภาพรวมด้วย นอกจากนี้ มีหลายครั้งที่เพื่อนร่วมชั้นถามฉันเกี่ยวกับประเทศไทย และมันทำให้ฉันเพิ่งรู้ว่าความคุ้นเคยมันทำให้ฉันมองข้ามที่มาและความหมายของหลายๆ สิ่งที่ฉันทำอยู่เป็นประจำหรือคิดอยู่เสมอ บางครั้ง การเรียนรู้เรื่องของตัวเองก็ไม่ได้มาจากความเข้าใจในสิ่งนั้นเพียงอย่างเดียว แต่ต้องอาศัยการเปรียบเทียบกับสิ่งอื่นด้วย

นอกเหนือไปจากเรื่องเรียน การใช้ชีวิตในญี่ปุ่นก็น่าตื่นเต้นและท้าทายไม่แพ้กัน การได้ไปซื้อของสดและทำอาหารกับเพื่อนๆ เป็นสิ่งที่ฉันไม่เคยได้สัมผัสในประเทศไทย แต่กลับกลายเป็นเรื่องปกติไปเมื่อฉันมาอยู่ที่นี่ บทสนทนากับเพื่อนต่างชาติในหอมันทำให้ฉันลืมไปได้ว่าเราต่างมาจากคนละที่ และพูดกันคนละภาษา ความประทับใจต่อแหล่งท่องเที่ยวในเกียวโตและแถบคันไซนั้นไม่แพ้ความประทับใจต่อความสะดวกสบายของรถเมล์และรถไฟของที่นี่ การไปไหนมาไหนนั้นง่ายดายพอๆ กับการหลงทาง แต่คนญี่ปุ่นก็เต็มใจช่วยเหลือเสมอในยามที่ฉันมีปัญหา ญี่ปุ่นทำให้ฉันประทับใจในหลายด้านเสียจนฉันไม่รู้ว่าจะบรรยายอย่างไรได้หมด (ตอนแรกอยากจะติว่าการแยกขยะนั้นละเอียดเสียจนชวนสับสน แต่เมื่อชินแล้วก็ทำให้ฉันยิ่งประทับใจกับความมีระเบียบของคนที่นี่แทน)

โครงการ AIMS ทำให้ฉันมีโอกาสพูดคุยกับเพื่อนจากหลายประเทศ และทำให้มุมมองต่อโลกของฉันกว้างขึ้นอีกหลายเท่า และทำให้ฉันเติบโตขึ้นทั้งในแง่ความรู้และมนุษย์คนหนึ่ง และทุกอย่างที่ฉันได้รับและเรียนรู้จากการเข้าร่วมในโครงการนี้จะเป็นส่วนหนึ่งในชีวิตของฉันไปอีกแสนนาน หากเทียบกับเวลาทั้งชีวิต ไม่กี่เดือนที่มหาวิทยาลัย Ritsumeikan อาจจะดูน้อยนิด แต่ฉันจะทำให้มันเป็นช่วงเวลาที่มีคุณค่า และน่าจดจำที่สุด


รายงานการศึกษาในต่างประเทศ (เมื่อปี 2016: จากมหาวิทยาลัยธรรมศาสตร์)

นางสาว ทัชฌา จิตรัตนอนันต์

สวัสดีค่ะ ฉันชื่อ ทัชฌา จิตรัตนอนันต์ หรือ จูล ปัจจุบันฉันเป็นนักศึกษาคณะเศรษฐ์ศาสตร์ มหาวิทยาลัยธรรมศาสตร์ค่ะ ฉันได้รับโอกาสให้เข้าร่วมโครงการแลกเปลี่ยน AIMS ณ ประเทศญี่ปุ่น คณะรัฐศาสตร์ ระหว่างประเทศ มหาวิทยาลัย Ritsumeikan เป็นระยะเวลาหนึ่งภาคการศึกษาค่ะ ประสบการณ์ต่างๆ ที่ฉันได้รับระหว่างเข้าร่วมโครงการนั้นสำคัญและมีความหมายต่อฉันมากค่ะ เนื่องจากฉันอธิบายไม่ค่อยดีซักเท่าไหร่ ฉันจะพยายามเล่าประสบการณ์ที่ฉันได้รับจากโครงการนี้ให้ดีที่สุดค่ะ

ฉันได้ไปเรียนที่วิทยาเขตคินุงาสะ และได้ลงเรียน 2 วิชาพิเศษที่มีแค่มหาวิทยาลัย Ritsumeikan เท่านั้น วิชาแรกคือวิชา GSG หรือ Global Simulation Gaming เป็นวิชาที่จำลองปัญหาต่าง ๆ ของโลกในปัจจุบัน โดยจะขึ้นอยู่กับหัวข้อของแต่ละปี ซึ่งในปีนี้หัวข้อคือปัญหาด้านความมั่นคง ฉันไม่เคยเรียนและไม่มีความรู้เกี่ยวกับรัฐศาสตร์ระหว่างประเทศมาก่อนเลย การที่ฉันตัดสินใจลงเรียนวิชานี้จึงเป็นการท้าทายมาก ๆ ค่ะ ในวันเจรจาจริงของวิชานี้ก็สนุกมากกว่าที่คิดไว้เยอะเลยค่ะ ฉันรู้สึกดีใจมากที่ได้ลงเรียนวิชานี้ค่ะ นอกจากจะได้ความรู้ใหม่ ๆ แล้ว ยังได้เรียนรู้การทำงานร่วมกับนักเรียนจากประเทศอื่น ๆ ไม่ใช่แค่จากประเทศญี่ปุ่นด้วยค่ะ วิชาที่สองคือวิชา Special Lecture ซึ่งมีนักเรียนที่ได้ไปแลกเปลี่ยนมาแล้วและกำลังจะไปแลกเปลี่ยนที่ประเทศไทยและอินโดนีเซียเข้าร่วมเรียนด้วยค่ะ ฉันได้เรียนรู้ความคิดเห็นและทัศนคติใหม่ ๆ ผ่านการนำเสนอจากนักเรียนของแต่ละประเทศด้วยค่ะ และทำให้ความคิดและมุมมองของฉันเปลี่ยนไปอย่างมากค่ะ ฉันรู้สึกดีใจมาก ๆ ที่ได้เรียนวิชานี้ค่ะ วิชานี้จะช่วยให้นักเรียนที่กำลังจะไปแลกเปลี่ยนนั้น ได้รู้ถึงข้อมูลเบื้องต้นของประเทศนั้น ๆ และสามารถช่วยให้ปรับตัวกับประเทศนั้น ๆ ได้ง่ายขึ้นด้วยค่ะ

นอกจากนี้ยังมีกิจกรรมพิเศษสำหรับนักเรียนต่างชาติซึ่งจัดขึ้นโดยชมรมของนักศึกษา ฉันได้เข้าร่วมกิจกรรมการแต่งหน้าแบบญี่ปุ่นค่ะ กิจกรรมนี้น่าสนใจมากและสามารถนำมาประยุกต์ใช้ในชีวิตได้ค่ะ ทางผู้จัดกิจกรรมยังมอบส่วนลดสำหรับตัดผมที่ร้านให้ด้วยค่ะ และยังมีกิจกรรมที่เกี่ยวกับภาษาด้วยค่ะ ไม่ใช่แค่ภาษาญี่ปุ่นเท่านั้น ภาษาอื่น ๆ ก็รวมอยู่ในกิจกรรมนี้ด้วยค่ะ กิจกรรมนี้จะใช้ระบบจับคู่นักเรียน โดยให้นักเรียนแต่ละคนสอนภาษาจากประเทศตัวเองหรือภาษาที่ตนเองถนัดมาที่สุด ให้กับนักเรียนที่สนใจในภาษานั้น ๆ ค่ะ แต่ว่าน่าเสียดายมาก ๆ เพราะระบบการจับคู่นี้เป็นระบบใหม่ ทำให้เกิดข้อผิดพลาดขึ้น ทำให้ฉันไม่ได้คู่ค่ะ ถ้ามีโอกาส ฉันแนะนำให้เข้าร่วมกิจกรรมนี้ค่ะ รับรองว่ามันจะต้องมีประโยชน์มาก ๆ

ในส่วนของที่พักนั้น ฉันได้พักอยู่ที่หอ I-House Taishogun ซึ่งอยู่ที่เมืองเกียวโตค่ะ หอนี้ไม่ไกลจากมหาวิทยาลัยด้วยค่ะ ฉันตื่นเต้นมาก ๆ เพราะนี่เป็นครั้งแรกที่ฉันจะได้อยู่ที่หอค่ะ ห้องส่วนตัว ห้องครัว และห้องน้ำสะอาดและดีมากค่ะ เจ้าหน้าที่ทุกคนก็ให้ความช่วยเหลือดีมากค่ะ ฉันชอบห้องอเนกประสงค์มากที่สุดค่ะ เพราะว่าห้องนี้มีเปียโนอยู่ ฉันไม่คิดว่าที่หอพักของมหาวิทยาลัยจะมีเครื่องดนตรีด้วยค่ะ เนื่องจากหอนี้ไม่ไกลจากมหาวิทยาลัย ฉันจึงเดินไปมหาวิทยาลัยทุกวันค่ะ เป็นการออกกำลังกายที่ดีมากเลย นอกจากนี้ยังมีร้านสะดวกซื้อและซูเปอร์มาร์เก็ตอยู่ใกล้ ๆ หอด้วยค่ะ และสถานีรถไฟก็ไม่ไกลมาก สะดวกต่อการเดินทางมาก ๆ เลยค่ะ

เกียวโตเป็นเมืองที่ดีมากค่ะ ถึงแม้ว่าพื้นที่ส่วนใหญ่จะถูกปรับปรุงให้เป็นจุดท่องเที่ยวแล้วก็ตาม เมื่อเทียบกับเมืองอื่น ๆ แล้ว ฉันคิดว่าเกียวโตเป็นเมืองที่ดีที่สุดในการท่องเที่ยวรอบ ๆ ค่ะ ไม่ใช่แต่เมืองเกียวโตเท่านั้น ฉันชื่นชอบช่วงเวลาที่ฉันได้พักอยู่ที่หอกับเพื่อน ๆ มากค่ะ การมาแลกเปลี่ยนครั้งนี้ได้เปิดและเปลี่ยนมุมมองความคิดของฉันมากค่ะ ฉันจะไม่มีทางลืมประสบการณ์และความทรงจำทั้งหมดที่ได้รับ และจะรักษามันไว้ให้ดีที่สุดค่ะ ฉันหวังว่าประสบการณ์เหล่านี้จะช่วยและสนับสนุนฉันในอนาคตค่ะ ขอบคุณเจ้าหน้าที่ทุกคน อาจารย์ และเพื่อน ๆ ที่ได้สร้างประสบการณ์แสนวิเศษเหล่านี้ให้กับฉันค่ะ ขอบคุณที่อ่านเรื่องราวของฉันจนจบนะคะ ฉันหวังว่าคุณจะมีประสบการณ์ที่ดีและสนุกไปกับเกียวโตค่ะ


Laporan Studi Luar Negeri (inbound 2016: Institut Teknologi Bandung)

Ellian Jaisy Rahman
Institut Teknologi Bandung

Hai semua, namaku Jaisy. Bangga sekali rasanya bisa menjadi mahasiswa pertukaran pelajar dari Institut Teknologi Bandung (ITB) di Universitas Ritsumeikan, salah satu kampus terkeren di Jepang, atau mungkin juga di dunia. Aku punya kisah menakjubkan yang ingin aku ceritakan kepadamu, siapkanlah secangkir teh hangat dan duduk santai di taman kesukaanmu sambil membaca ceritaku ini.

Mari kita mulai dengan cerita tentang pengalaman belajar di Ritsumeikan. Aku mengambil mata kuliah Problem Based Learning (PBL) dengan dosen Profesor Toyoda, Profesor Francis, dan Profesor Piyada. Kelas ini memberikan banyak sekali pengetahuan baru dan membuka mataku pada aspek penting sudut pandang global terkini, yang aku pikir sangat perlu untuk diketahui oleh para mahasiswa internasional. Sejujurnya, dosen-dosen di mata kuliah ini sangat menarik dan membuat kelas menjadi lebih menyenangkan. Profesor Toyoda dengan gaya rambutnya yang keren dan cara mengajarnya yang asyik, Profesor Francis dengan lelucon khas Jepangnya, dan aku tak akan lupa saat Profesor Piyada tiba-tiba memintaku untuk mencarikan film “Ayat-Ayat Cinta” untuk bahan mata kuliahnya yang lain. Kelas lain yang aku ambil, yang semuanya berkaitan dengan manajemen dan strategi bisnis internasional, juga membuatku takjub dengan cara mengajarnya, suasananya, dan fasilitas belajarnya yang supermodern. Dua dosen favoritku ialah Profesor Miyata dan Profesor Raupach. Mereka memperlihatkan analisis mendalam yang menarik tentang wawasan bisnis internasional melalui kisah di kelas-kelasnya.

Sekarang, mari lanjutkan cerita ke bagian paling menyenangkan yang ingin sekali aku sampaikan. Percayalah, para mahasiswa dan mahasiswi Jepang di Ritsumeikan adalah orang-orang paling ramah dan rendah hati di bumi ini, terutama para anggota TISA, yaitu perkumpulan kawan mahasiswa internasional. Mereka bahkan sudah menemani sejak hari pertama aku datang ke Jepang dengan koper yang sangat berat, lalu membantu mengurus KTP Jepang di kantor dinas, hingga petualangan menjelajahi kota Ibaraki –Taman EXPO’70 yang tak terlupakan- mereka selalu ada untuk memastikan bahwa aku menikmati setiap waktu yang aku habiskan di Jepang. Tentu saja cerita seru tidak berhenti di TISA, karena hingga menulis kisah ini, aku sudah mempunyai ratusan teman menakjubkan di kampus, yang terdiri dari mahasiswa Jepang dan juga internasional seperti dari Amerika, Perancis, Swedia, Norwegia, Rusia, Korea, Cina, Meksiko, Irak, dan negara-negara lainnnya. Aku juga bergabung dengan beberapa perkumpulan mahasiswa, seperti Delegasi Mahasiswa Internasional Universitas Ritsumeikan, Talkfest, SUP, COSMEDIA, dan lainnya.

Bercerita mengenai kehidupan sehari-hariku di Jepang, tentu saja akan menyinggung banyak hal tentang budaya dan kebiasaan masyarakat di Jepang yang aku rasakan. Sekarang aku tahu mengapa Jepang sangat terkenal di kalangan masyarakat internasional. Salah satu temanku dari Thailand dan Amerika pernah mengatakan suatu hal menarik dan sangat menggambarkan apa yang kamu rasakan ketika hidup di Jepang, “Jepang, setiap hari adalah sebuah kejutan…”. Mataku menjadi saksi akan bagaimana kebersihan; ketepatan waktu; semangat dan etos kerja; penghargaan dan penghormatan antarsesama; teknologi modern; serta nilai-nilai lokal sangat dijunjung tinggi oleh masyarakat Jepang disini.

Siapapun dan di manapun kamu yang sedang membaca ceritaku saat ini, bersyukurlah karena kamu adalah orang yang beruntung karena dapat berhubungan dan merasakan pengalaman yang indah di hidupmu, serta membuat banyak momen yang abadi seperti di Kampus Universitas Ritsumeikan. Kampus ini akan memperlihatkan dan membuktikan padamu bahwa hidup bergitu pantas untuk dijelajahi mati-matian. Jangan hanya berhenti pada apa yang kamu ketahui saat ini, di Ritsumeikan kamu akan bertemu dengan hal yang tak terduga yang dapat mengubah hidupmu dan bagaimana kamu melihat dunia ini. Jika kamu bertanya apa yang benar-benar aku temukan di Jepang, cukup ingatlah dengan kalimat bijaksana ini, “akan selalu ada langit di atas langit penuh bintang itu”.


Study Abroad Report (2017 inbound: Universitas Indonesia)

Talitha Nabila
Universitas Indonesia

Hi everyone. My Name is Talitha Nabila. I am an exchange student from Universitas Indonesia. In my home university I am majoring in economics, but here at Ritsumeikan University I have been studying international relations at the Kinugasa Campus. I will be studying here in Ritsumeikan for one semester through the AIMS Program. It has been more than 2 months since I came to live in Kyoto. Everything feels like a dream for me. I never imagined an ordinary girl like me could study abroad in Japan. Of course, I have been to some other countries for travelling, but this experience is different because here in Japan I will not only go sightseeing around the city but also study in the university, get to know about the culture, communicate with the local people, and get in touch with the local community.

The first time I arrived in Japan was on March 14th. It was cold at that time, so different from the weather in Indonesia, but I really liked it. I feel so impressed with everything here, such as the transportation, health, punctuality, cleanliness, modernity, and politeness. Many people use bicycles and public transportation, or just walk on foot. For the public transportation they have bus, train, subway, shinkansen, and many others. It is not as if we do not have these in Indonesia,  but it is just different because here they have something like an exact timetable. At first I was not really used to the punctuality, but now it has become a habit. People in Japan also have to register themselves for the National Health Insurance, which will cover 70% of their medical costs. Everything is very well-organized. In Indonesia, we have started to separate our trash, but it is still not common. In Japan, I need to separate my trash into five different types. The people are into it, so it’s no wonder I rarely see trash strewn about. I also feel like everything in here is very modern, not to mention how cool the toilet is. I can see many kinds of vending machine around the corner, and I can order food from a machine. The technology is super. Moreover I feel touched with the kindness of the people; they aren’t hesitant to ask and help me find my way when I am lost. Yes, I have been lost in translation many times. But I like being lost in Japan.

On campus I am taking PBL courses such as the global simulation gaming class, which is so challenging for me. The class is something like Model United Nations. I need to do many research, discussion, and debate activities. This course encourages greater understanding and develops my lifelong learning skills. There are also many other kinds of interesting courses that I am taking. Here I live at International House Taishogun, a dormitory for international students. I have met many students from different countries, which made me learn about other cultures and customs beside Japan. By interacting with people from different countries, it has expanded my knowledge and information. I also managed to join a softball circle on campus with Japanese students and do volunteer work in a childcare center nearby the dorm. That is a good opportunity for me to get in touch with the local people and community.

Being chosen as one of the representatives from Universitas Indonesia to study here at Ritsumeikan University is such an honor for me. As an exchange student, this program is the opportunity to see the world and I really recommend everyone, especially prospective students, to give it a try because you will experience different styles of education, have the opportunity to witness a completely new way of life, immerse yourself in a new language, have the opportunity to meet new lifelong friends from different backgrounds, and discover yourself while gaining an understanding of a different culture. So that when you finish your study abroad program and return home, you will return with a new perspective on culture, language skills, a great education, and a willingness to learn. But most of all, do not forget to have some fun! It really is worth a try.


Study Abroad Report (2017 inbound: Thammasat University)

Rattapon Thadnork
Thammasat University

If you think of how to change your life in a better way, to be an exchange student in Japan will be the most recommended answer for you. As an exchange student at Ritsumeikan University, Japan, through the AIMS program, I have been bombarded with a ton of experiences and great memories. I also have lots of great classes with an international atmosphere that are really challenging and fun. Not only can I learn new cultures and have many chances to tackle new things, but I have also developed great friendships during my stay here.

For the classes, there are a lot of good classes, especially International Industries and International PBL seminar. The International Industries course is run by Prof. Dr. Raupach, one of my best professors at Ritsumeikan University. The professor is aware of the purpose of the exchange program: the Japanese government would like students to be able to come up with solutions based on problems. The professor is enthusiastic to address the questions and kindly encourages students to give the solutions. During the class, students have lots of chances to work and hold discussions with one another. The most interesting thing is that the students are from different parts of the world such as Southeast Asia, Europe, America and Japan. The different problems in different countries are eagerly shared and discussed. Furthermore, the International PBL seminar was set up internationally and gathered students to make a project. This enables students to have the experience of cooperating with other international students.

Japan is well-known as a strongly disciplined country. My discipline has unconsciously changed in a good way. For instance, I now consider that being punctual is really important after coming to Japan. Thus, I can manage my time to do things more efficiently than before. While a student, I have part-time jobs such as a house keeper and an English teacher. I would like to try to be like Japanese students, who normally do part-time jobs and have to allocate their time to study as well. I have learnt tremendously from this and I would like to raise this awareness for Thai students if I have the chance to do so.

I have had the opportunity to stay at Oak Town Higashi Ibaraki, where my neighbours are local. I can learn how Japanese live their daily lives, and moreover I can notice how Japanese consider time as one of the most important things. They have to walk fast to compete with time in order to catch the very punctual trains. In addition, I can go to the university on foot and by bicycle—approximately 3.3 kilometres away from Oak Town Higashi Ibaraki—so I can simultaneously keep myself healthy while being a hard-working student. To live at Oak Town is such a good opportunity for me.

Finally, all of my Japanese and international friends are friendly and supportive. Even though I came here by myself, I have never felt alone. Both Japanese and international peers have always cheered me up and cared about me. So, there is no need to worry even if you are joining a program alone without initial companions. You are going to create such great friendships here.

To be an exchange student is something that must be experienced once in your college life, in my opinion. You will surely grow up and be able to have a high ability to make good decisions in the future, due to the fact that you have to wisely orchestrate everything by yourself all the time. I, for example, know myself what I would like to really do in my future because of being an exchange student here.




รายงานการศึกษาในต่างประเทศ (เมื่อปี 2017: จากมหาวิทยาลัยธรรมศาสตร์)

รัฐพล เทศนอก

ถ้าจะให้เล่าถึงประสบการณ์การมาแลกเปลี่ยนที่มหาวิทยาลัยริทสึเมคัง ณ ประเทศญี่ปุ่น สิ่งที่ผมต้องการจะเล่าสู่กันฟังก็คงจะหนีไม่พ้นการใช้ชีวิตท่ามกลางสิ่งแวดล้อมที่ไม่คุ้นเคยและผู้คนที่ไม่คุ้นตา แต่อย่างไรก็ตามสิ่งที่เราไม่คุ้นเคยเหล่านั้น เป็นจุดเริ่มต้นของเรื่องราวและความทรงจำดี ๆ ที่จะประทับใจไปตลอดทั้งชีวิต
ประการแรก การได้มาเป็นนักศึกษาแลกเปลี่ยนที่ประเทศญี่ปุ่น ทำให้ผมเรียนรู้การใช้ชีวิตคนเดียว ฝึกการกล้าตัดสินใจ และมีระเบียบวินัยมากขึ้น การที่่จะต้องทำอะไรทุกอย่างด้วยตนเอง เราจะต้องคิดให้รอบคอบและรู้จักแยกแยะอะไรที่เราควรทำก่อนหรือทำหลัง และทำให้เรียนรู้ว่าการออกจาก comfort zone เป็นเรื่องที่ดี ผมต้องทำตัวให้กระตือรือร้นและเรียนรู้สิ่งใหม่ ๆ ตลอดระยะเวลาที่ผมอยู่ที่นี่ ทำให้ผมสามารถนำไปประยุกต์ใช้ได้ในอนาคตหลังจากสำเร็จการศึกษาและเตรียมความพร้อมที่จะเป็นผู้ใหญ่ที่มีประสิทธิภาพสืบไปในอนาคต
ประการที่สอง การได้อยู่ในสังคมนานาชาติ ทำให้โลกของผมเปิดกว้างมากขึ้น กล่าวคือ ผมได้เรียนรู้ว่า คนแต่ละประเทศมีกระบวนการคิดและมองสิ่งต่าง ๆ อย่างไร และการได้ใช้ภาษาอังกฤษติดต่อสื่อสารกันก็เป็นเรื่องที่ท้าทายและเป็นประโยชน์อย่างมากในอนาคต การมาแลกเปลี่ยนในครั้งนี้ทำให้ผมรู้ว่าผมจะต้องไม่หยุดพัฒนาตน เหมือนกับที่คนชาติอื่น ๆ เขาไม่เคยหยุดพัฒนาตนเช่นกัน
ประการที่สาม การได้มาแลกเปลี่ยน ณ ประเทศญี่ปุ่น ทำให้ผมได้ลองทำสิ่งใหม่ ๆ ที่ผมไม่เคยได้ทำมาก่อน เช่น การทำงานพาร์ทไทม์ในขณะที่เป็นนักศึกษา ซึ่งสิ่งนี้ทำให้ผมมองตัวผมแตกต่างออกไปจากในอดีตอย่างมาก กล่าวคือ ผมได้เรียนรู้ว่า สิ่งต่าง ๆ ที่ผมคิดว่าผมทำมาอย่างหนัก อันที่จริงแล้วมันเป็นแค่เพียงเศษเสี้ยวเดียวที่นักเรียนญี่ปุ่นทำกัน นักเรียนญี่ปุ่นมากกว่าร้อยละ 90 ต้องทำงานพาร์ทไทม์และเรียนไปด้วย ไม่ว่าฐานะทางบ้านเขาจะจนหรือรวยแค่ไหนก็ตาม สิ่งนี้ทำให้ผมรู้สึกประทับใจและต้องการให้คนในชาติตระหนักถึง เพื่อเพิ่มศักยภาพให้กับประเทศชาติสืบไป
ประการสุดท้าย มิตรภาพที่ดีได้รับการก่อตัวขึ้นจากการมาเป็นนักเรียนแลกเปลี่ยนที่นี่ ผมได้ทั้งเพื่อนคนไทยและคนต่างชาติที่พร้อมจะช่วยเหลือกันและมีความสุขไปด้วยกัน มันทำให้ผมได้เรียนรู้การใช้ชีวิตแบบน้ำพึ่งเรือเสือพึ่งป่า และผมรู้สึกได้เลยว่า การเป็นห่วงคนอื่นและการใส่ใจคนอื่น ๆ เป็นเรื่องที่ดี เพราะว่ามิตรภาพที่ดีนั้นเป็นสิ่งที่มีคุณค่าและไม่สามารถซื้อได้ด้วยเงิน



Study Abroad Report (2017 inbound: Institut Teknologi Bandung)

Pratiwi Prameswari
Institut Teknologi Bandung

Hello, everyone! How’s your day today? I hope you have a great day.  So, talking about a life of an exchange student, have you ever thought of doing grocery shopping with international friends? Or having unique stationery like stapleless staplers? Or…accidentally strolling across your neighborhood and getting a warm welcome into an-old-Japanese style house? Actually, I had also never thought and imagined about that before. However, these are all real and indeed pleasant experiences that I have had. Now, let me take you to have a glance of my exciting journey as an exchange student in Japan.

My name is Pratiwi Prameswari, an exchange student in the College of Policy Science at Ritsumeikan University. My original major at ITB is Urban and Regional Planning. During my stay at Ritsumeikan University, one of the most interesting classes that I took is International PBL Seminar. In this class, I needed to work together in a group with members from different majors and countries. We got big two projects to solve, a business case and a campus case. We shared new knowledge and perspectives to solve the problems. The amazing thing about this class was that you can choose and create your own stories with your international friends during the projects. For me, the unforgettable thing during this class was spontaneously going to the grocery store after a group meeting. My group had decided to sell Japanese, Thai, and Indonesian flavor portable food for a business project. However, we didn’t have any idea about the price of the materials. So, we spontaneously went to the nearest grocery shop in the evening. Even though we aimed at only checking the price at first, we ended up sharing stories about each other’s traditional foods and buying some raw materials for the prototype. It was a sudden yet exciting thing for just taking a single class.

Japan has also never failed to surprise me for its technology and unique products. I’ve always been amazed by many products in Japan. Here, many common products have gotten a deeper attention and been turned into masterpieces. One of the simple examples is stationery. You can find a bunch of unique stationery products, such as erasable highlighters or erasable pens. The unique stationery that grabbed my attention was the stapleless stapler. I’ve never seen a stapler without metal staples and I really like that idea. 

Another thing that I love about Japan is the culture and the friendliness of the people.  Japanese people are very nice and helpful. Japan has also preserved its cultural heritage very well despite its development of sophisticated technology. One day, when I was going back to my apartment in Suita, I accidentally found an old-Japanese-style house with a huge wooden gate. I stole a glance at the house and a woman came out. The house turned out to be a Japanese cultural heritage site. She smiled and asked me whether I want to go inside or not.  I decided to go inside. The entrance fee was surprisingly free and the house was very huge. She was very nice to me and showed me everything around. Even though it was hard for her to explain everything in English, she tried her very best to explain everything. It was a really nice and exciting experience.

However, this is only a small part of my amazing experiences. I strongly recommend you to take your chance to be an exchange student here to get your own experiences. Get your own interesting stories, learn many new things, and experience the excitement of living in Japan! Many amazing journeys are waiting for you to be discovered.


Laporan Studi Luar Negeri (inbound 2017: Institut Teknologi Bandung)

Pratiwi Prameswari
Institut Teknologi Bandung

Halo, semua! Bagaimana harimu hari ini? Semoga menyenangkan ya. Kalau berbicara mengenai kehidupan mahasiswa pertukaran pelajar, pasti setiap orang punya bayangannya sendiri. Tapi pernah tidak terbayang untuk berbelanja bersama teman-teman dari negara lain? Atau punya alat tulis unik seperti staples tanpa isi? Atau.. disambut hangat di rumah kuno tradisional Jepang? Sebenarnya sih, dulu aku juga tidak pernah terbayang. Tapi ternyata itu semua terjadi dan sangat seru! Nah, sekarang tengok yuk sekilas cerita tentang pengalamanku sebagai mahasiswa exchange di Jepang.

Kenalkan, namaku Pratiwi Prameswari. Di Universitas Ritsumeikan, aku merupakan mahasiwa pertukaran pelajar di Fakultas Ilmu Kebijakan Publik. Kalau jurusan aku di Institut Teknologi Bandung (ITB) sebenarnya adalah Perencanaan Wilayah dan Kota (SAPPK). Nah, selama berkuliah di Ritsumeikan, salah satu kelas paling menarik yang aku ambil adalah Seminar Internasional PBL. Di kelas ini, aku belajar untuk bekerja sama dalam kelompok dengan anggota dari beragam jurusan dan negara. Kami mendapat dua proyek utama untuk dipecahkan, yaitu sebuah studi kasus bisnis dan sebuah studi kasus kampus. Berbagai pengetahuan dan perspektif baru aku dapatkan. Tapi menurutku, yang paling seru dari kelas ini adalah kita dapat menciptakan sendiri cerita menarik bersama teman-teman lainnya sesuai minat kita. Di kelompok kami, pengalaman yang paling tidak terlupakan adalah ketika berbelanja ke supermarket secara tiba-tiba. Pada awalnya kami sama sekali tidak ada rencana untuk pergi ke supermarket. Tapi karena kami butuh mengetahui harga bahan makanan untuk proyek bisnis, kami pun secara spontan mengunjungi supermarket dekat kampus. Meskipun awalnya kami hanya berniat melihat harga, pada akhirnya kami justru saling bertukar cerita mengenai masakan tradisional masing-masing negara.

Jepang juga selalu menyimpan kejutan di bidang teknologi dan punya segudang produk unik. Di sini setiap barang yang awalnya biasa berubah menjadi luar biasa. Contoh yang paling sederhana adalah alat tulis. Beragam jenis alat tulis lucu, seperti pensil dan stabilo yang dapat dihapus, bisa ditemukan di Jepang. Selain itu, ada juga staples tanpa isi yang bisa dibilang keren. Bayangkan sebuah staples tanpa ada isi tapi bisa merekatkan kertas. Wah, itu bisa menghemat pengeluaran untuk membeli isi staples.

Hal lainnya yang aku suka dari Jepang adalah budaya dan keramahan orang-orangnya. Orang-orang Jepang sangatlah ramah dan bersedia membantu kapanpun. Selain itu, Jepang juga memelihara peninggalan sejarahnya dengan baik walaupun teknologi berkembang sangat pesat. Pernah ketika aku sedang dalam perjalanan pulang menuju apartemen di Suita, aku tidak sengaja menemukan sebuah rumah berarsitektur Jepang kuno dengan pintu gerbang kayu yang sangat besar. Aku pun mencoba melihat ke dalam. Tiba-tiba seorang wanita keluar menyapaku. Ia tersenyum dan mengajakku masuk. Rupanya, rumah tersebut merupakan warisan sejarah. Biaya masuknya gratis dan ternyata dalamnya sangat besar. Wanita yang menyapaku tadi sangat ramah dan mengantarku mengelilingi rumah. Meskipun ia sulit berbicara dalam bahasa Inggris, ia berusaha keras untuk menjelaskan semuanya dengan baik. Buatku, pengalaman itu sangat menarik.

Pengalaman-pengalaman tersebut hanyalah sebagian dari kejadian menarik lainnya di Jepang. Aku sangat merekomendasikan kamu untuk mengambil kesempatan menjadi bagian dari program pertukaran pelajar di sini. Banyak petualangan seru menantimu. Dapatkan cerita menarik kamu, belajar banyak hal baru, dan nikmati hidup menyenangkan di Jepang!


Study Abroad Report (2017 inbound: Thammasat University)

Piriyapong Nhuthep
Thammasat University

My name is Piriyapong Nhuthep, or Nook for short. As a Thammasat student, first of all, I could say that is once in a lifetime opportunity to be able to exchange a semester here at Ritsumeikan University.

Where should I begin? It’s been nine weeks already since I have set foot on the land of the rising sun. Living in here brings renewed challenges and a sense of insatiable curiosity every day. Ironically, in Japan where the concept of time is invaluable, I seem to lose track of my own time accompanied by newfound friendships and experiences. Remembering the first day of my arrival, despite different nationalities, everyone was so welcoming with their arms open, so that I could feel the sense of belonging; a feeling of home. The weeks that followed were a blissful compilation of nonstop events, from a Hanami picnic at Osaka Castle and throwing BBQ parties to holding a karaoke party at my own apartment (we weren’t too loud though).

Aside from a touristy exchange life, the academic journey here is insightful. I am taking a variety of classes and two of the highlighted courses are Gaming Simulation and International PBL. Both of these classes offer a rich interaction between professors and students, and in the end it is not only educational but also deepens the relationship with my fellow international classmates as well.

Moreover, to me, when speaking of Japan, “discipline and punctual” were the first words that came up, and it’s true. One of the things I really admire is how most of my Japanese friends have their own Baito (part-time job); it is a respectable cultural norm here, which is different in Thailand. Personally, I believe having such experience would not only teach the value of savings but the future as well.

The experience so far is beyond my words and expectations, and I am cherishing every memory and relationship I have fostered. Through coming here, I have learned to embrace the unexpected, to step out of my own comfort zone and go enjoy every second of it. And lastly, if there is one thing I could wish for it would be that my exchange could last for a year instead of just one semester – there is so much yet to learn and explore!