Here is the place to have an opportunity to expand your worldview and cultivate a deep understanding of international relations in a richly diverse environment.

Second-year Global Studies Major

We interviewed BATKHUYAG Tamir, a second-year Global Studies major student who was awarded the Saionji Memorial Scholarship, about her study and the impact the academic environment had on her at Ritsumeikan University.

What motivated you to apply to the College of International Relations, Ritsumeikan University, and what did you want to learn in International Relations before enrollment?

TamirUpon my high school counselor's recommendation, Ritsumeikan University was placed at the top of my list of universities to apply to due to its renowned social sciences programs and its position as the most international school out of the Japanese institutions. I was particularly drawn to the College of International Relations because of its interdisciplinary curriculum and the opportunities for global engagement and cultural exchange through the academic and extracurricular activities offered by the school.

Despite my majoring in A-levels in Business Studies, my interests in other areas of the humanities and social sciences prompted a major decision. Faced with the choice between familiarity and the unknown, I weighed continuing what I excelled at versus exploring uncharted yet intriguing academic fields. The College of IR's appeal lay in its interdisciplinary model, which allowed me to pursue my interests in the humanities while branching into new fields simultaneously. The curriculum options align with my desire for a comprehensive education, offering the flexibility to navigate diverse subjects. This approach played a primary role in the decision that Ritsumeikan is the ideal platform to blend my fascination with international relations with my eagerness to explore various disciplines.

Reflecting on my choice of school as a second-year college student, determining my genuine academic interests would have been impractical or costly in terms of time and resources without opting for this multidisciplinary approach. Distinguishing between subjects I am genuinely passionate about and excel in and those that are merely side interests is a challenging task unless I enroll in actual courses, allowing for exposure to diverse perspectives.

What attracts you to study Global Studies?

TamirWhat drew me to study Global Studies is the systematic mandatory courses provided in each semester that are designed to guide the students from learning basic academic skills to completing their graduation thesis. The Introductory Seminar, for instance, groups students into small classes of around 20 students. In this setting, students not only enhance their foundational academic skills but also engage closely with both their peers and professors.

Within the Global Studies program, the student body has great diversity that brings different experiences and perspectives, which encourages the students to express their own opinions while also tolerating and respecting the opinions of others. The small class sizes and diverse student profiles enhance the prospects for interactions, promoting a collaborative and supportive learning environment.

As students progress through the courses, they not only build upon their academic skills but also cultivate a deeper understanding of global issues through the lens of diverse viewpoints. This system to the major equips the students with not only academic knowledge but also the interpersonal and critical skills necessary for navigating the complexities of today's interconnected world.

Please tell us the most fulfilling activity you participated in, and most memorable experience while at Ristumeikan University, Japan.

TamirThe most memorable and gratifying event of the previous academic year was the honor of being chosen for the Saionji Memorial Scholarship. This scholarship, granted each semester, is determined by evaluating students' performance in the preceding semester. Securing the Saionji Memorial Scholarship not only acknowledged my academic accomplishments but also affirmed my commitment and diligence throughout the term. Being selected from a pool of qualified candidates was immensely rewarding and served as a source of inspiration to persist in pursuing academic excellence at Ritsumeikan University.

Please tell us about your career intentions after graduation and what made you pursue such a career path?

TamirAs I approach graduation, my career path is taking a compelling turn towards a graduate school in behavioral economics. Despite the absence of an English-language course in this field at Ritsumeikan University, my proactive research during the Introductory Semester significantly shaped my career direction. This experience not only deepened my theoretical knowledge but also provided practical insights, sparking my interest in the wide-ranging applications of behavioral economics.

Furthermore, engaging in thoughtful discussions with peers with varying interests and backgrounds showed the interdisciplinary nature of the subject and solidified my passion. Recognizing the need for a more profound grasp of my passion before entering the job market, I am eager to pursue further studies after graduation. I do believe that this next academic step will not only refine my knowledge and skills but also position me to contribute meaningfully to the dynamic field of behavioral economics.

Witnessing my seniors, whom I have come to know through class discussions and group work, successfully gaining admission to renowned graduate schools served as a major source of motivation. Their achievements instilled in me the belief that pursuing such goals is indeed achievable. As well, the valuable contributions of professors and the guidance provided by the Career Center have proven instrumental in assisting students in charting their career paths, irrespective of their chosen fields. This support seemed invaluable in helping students make well-informed decisions that align with their individual strengths and aspirations.

Any messages from you to the students from overseas who are looking at the College of International Relations?

TamirAs you navigate through the application process, remember that Ritsumeikan University offers more than mere academic excellence—it is an opportunity to expand your worldview and cultivate a deep understanding of international relations in a richly diverse environment where you will be exposed to a multitude of perspectives. This immersive experience will extend beyond the classroom, providing you with the chance to connect with peers from around the world and participate in a wide variety of cultural and extracurricular activities.

While the application process and the challenge of moving to a new country can be overwhelming, it is notable to recognize that university is not a destination but a transformative journey where you architect your curiosity, passion, and ambitions into a meaningful career. The transformative nature of this journey is what makes it one of the best times in your life for such a change. Best of luck with your application process, and I hope you make the greatest decision that is particular to your personal and academic growth!

February 2024