Journal 5

There are many things I learned through this program, but from them I will mention two things that I especially felt interested in.
First, the biggest thing I felt while spending time in America was importance of deeply thinking, not language barriers. Actually, my most anxiety before studying abroad was difficulties of not being able to convey what I think to American people because of my poor English skills. My first dialogue class made me realize a new thing, however. In the class, I was asked whether I had a question about the lecture before the class. I couldn’t say anything, though. The reason was that I didn’t deeply think about the contents of the lecture. It was true that my English skill was not good, but I learned the following thing. Even if you can speak English very well, you can’t say anything about something if you don’t think about it properly. Therefore, studying English in order to improve my English skills, I had a precious experience of clarifying what I think about and how I convey it to someone by using a foreign language in this program.
Second thing I learned was that individualism in America and collectivism in Japan from the differences of attitudes toward classes between America and Japan. American students positively are involved in classes. On the other hand, Japanese students are too shy to speak in class. I guess that in America a way of thinking that you should say what you want to tell develops. In contrast, in Japan students mind that how they are thought of about theirselves by telling what they want to say. In short, many Japanese students focus on maintaining the harmony or cooperation of their groups. However I think that we have to be involved in class more and more because it is necessary to make classes be active and intellectual.
Through this program, I felt that many American people had an awareness of diversity and rights. So, I thought that I should study American diversity and rights, especially the rights of LGBTQ people because I majored in gender and sexuality in university. There is same problem in Japan too, but they are not treated as a problem very much. On the contrary, the thought that loving the other sex person is natural is still very superior. Therefore, I want to learn that why American people deeply think about the problems and what perspectives they have. In addition to the study, I also must study the differences of way of thinking between Americans and Japanese more and more. By doing like that, I think I can get some hint of changing the present condition about sexual minority people in Japan.
As I put above, I was worried about participating this program at first, but in the end I was so excited during this program because W&M PAs, CIs, directors and Keio students were very kind and interesting. I was glad that I could have various experience with everyone. I really hope that I can see you again. Thank you so much for seeing and supporting me!

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