Special Contents

Interview with Sakura Scholars​ (AY2018)

Yubin CHUN & Brencis KIM

American University Ritsumeikan University Joint Degree Program, College of International Relations

As the first Sakura Scholars, Yubin CHUN from the Republic of Korea (left) and Brencis KIM from the United States (right) talk about why they chose the first joint degree program in a Japanese university, how the classes are and their future dreams. Interviewed by Dr. Sumiyo Nishizaki, Assistant Professor, College of International Relations.

Why did you apply for the Joint Degree Program(JDP)?

Yubin: I applied for the JDP because students in the program will be enrolled both at American University and Ritsumeikan University and earn one degree jointly awarded by both institutions. The degree will help me purse my global career. In addition, I really wanted to learn in international environments and also got interested in studying Global International Relations (GIR) .

Brencis: When I first learnt about the JDP from my family, I was taking a gap year from my previous university in order to reconsider my own future. The JDP immediately fascinated me as I used to enjoy history in my high school and am very much interested in learning GIR. Moreover, I had visited Japan before and love the country. So, I decided to change universities and am now very happy to refocus in my life in the JDP!

What have you found good/enjoyed so far in the JDP?

Brencis: JDP students are always provided strong support and detailed advice by university faculty and staff members. We truly appreciate it. I am determined to respond to attention I have received as a first Sakura Scholar.

Yubin: One good thing about the JDP is that I can access AU’s academic resources from the start of my study, which will be very helpful for me.

Prof. Nishizaki: The collection of American University Library resources is very rich. You can definitely find what you need to help you with your learning and research.

How do you like studying in international classes?

Yubin: At RU, you can meet friends from all over the world and it’s quite interesting to know how people see things differently. For students like me who wish to join global communities, it will be very helpful to experience such international environments beforehand.

Brencis: Diversity is important, but here I can also learn about Asian values by interacting with a lot of Japanese students.

Prof. Nishizaki: Learning non-Western viewpoints at RU will be a good preparation for your studies at AU.

What are you looking forward to at American University?

Brencis: A lot of renowned guests visit D.C. for seminars and give speeches. I will look forward to meeting these people in the city.

Yubin: I’d like to have deeper experience both at and outside AU, and to travel around the U.S. to discover new horizons.

Brencis: The advantages of studying in D.C. includes an access to a number of internships that can build professional networks.

What are your future career ideas after finishing the JDP?

Yubin: My original plan is to get a job at the United Nations. However, I’m now interested in the gaming industry in Japan and becoming an international marketing specialist is one of my career ideas, too.

Brencis: One of my future dreams is working for the International Olympic Committee. I love sports and hope to be part of an international sports federation. On the other hand, I will remain open to any other career fields where I can contribute.

Yubin and Brencis seem to enjoy their new life in Ritsumeikan, while already working hard for their future goals. We look forward to seeing our Sakura Scholars play an active role in the global community in the future!

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