人文学部 国際英語学科 ニュース

In another installment exploring the past and current experiences of GSE graduates, I have been speaking (remotely) with CN. As you'll hear below, she is doing very well in her new job in the digital marketing sector. CN is very much missed here at HJU, but I have really enjoyed hearing about her new life, and how, now that she has been in the working world for a while, she looks back on her time here at HJU.

CN always stood out in my memory as having particularly good English skills, but perhaps even more markedly, as being quite entrepreneurial and professional. I asked her first, about her current job, and whether she uses English.

After graduation, I was headhunted by a very small venture company in Tokyo. Currently, I am working professionally in digital marketing, as well as studying daily to improve my skills as a writer and in growth hacking (helping companies grow). In my daily work, I mostly work with Google. You probably use Google search when you shop or browse the internet, and it is no exaggeration to say that information is now the most important thing in global trade. As a writer, I write in Japanese about my specialty area, but the information I collect is primarily from international sites. In my work connected to growth hacking, the tools I use are also from overseas. Simply, these are things that you cannot master if you don't speak English. So, I'm not an active English-speaking professional such as people working in hotels or the airline industry, but I am grateful to be able to do work that I am proud of thanks to being able to use a variety of English expressions, have good reading comprehension, and other background information I developed during my studies in GSE.

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CN Busy working in her new position

Then, since I am sure many current and future students reading this want to be able to use English in their everyday lives, just like CN, I asked her what her top tips are for improving English skills.

I'm better at reading and writing than I am at speaking when it comes to English. Many people might suggest going to places where you can talk with native speakers, but I have a different view. I think you should focus on maintaining and developing your strengths. It's always possible to let others help who make up for your weaknesses. I think in society, people with expertise are more valuable than all-rounders. Do you tend to think in terms of your deficiencies ("my speaking is no better than a child!"), or in terms of strengths ("I am a match for anyone in this class when it comes to writing!"). I tend to think more like the latter, and so I tried to set and stay on top of writing challenges. Teachers will understand when you make an effort, and I tended to receive good feedback because I showed great commitment to what I was doing. Please feel at ease and make an effort in a direction that gives you confidence in yourself.

I wondered how CN looks back at her time at HJU, what the highlights were, and whether she wishes she could give any advice to her younger self.

At HJU, I was able to spend time with my classmates and teachers who all had their own unique talents. The highlight of my student life is the fieldwork in Vietnam that I participated in my first year. I put myself in an unfamiliar culture and worked on the program with Vietnamese students. I lived in an English-only environment for 24 hours and gave a presentation every night about what I learned by going to various places. The days were hard both physically and mentally, and I sometimes got sick. However, this experience is very useful for me, and in my current work at the venture company in Tokyo, which cannot afford to devote any resources to education or support, I am tough enough to cope. This is because in the marketing industry where there is no correct answer, even if you are cornered, you can laugh and say to yourself "It was even harder when I went to Vietnam." I realize that human beings can become stronger if they experience their limits. If you want to talk to yourself at that time, I would like to say "Good job! You're so tough!".
(広島女学院大学では、ユニークな才能に恵まれたクラスメイトや先生方と、伸び伸びと過ごすことができました。学生生活のハイライトは、一年次で参加したベトナムでのフィールドワークです。慣れない文化の中に身を置いて、ベトナムの学生たちと共にプログラムに取り組みました。24時間英語だけで生活をし、いろんな場所へ行って学んだことについて毎晩プレゼンテーションを行いました。心身ともにハードな日々で、不調を起こすこともありました。しかし、現在教育リソースなどに割く余裕もない東京のベンチャー企業で働く私にとっては、この経験が非常に役に立っています。正解のないマーケティング業で、自分が追い詰められても、「ベトナムに行った時はもっと辛かったな」と笑い飛ばせるからです。極限を経験していれば、人間は強くなれるということを私は実感しています。当時の自分に声をかけるなら、"Good job! You're so tough!" と言ってあげたいですね。)

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CN at Global Village Field Experience in Vietnam in 2017

Finally, some words of advice for high school students:

College students are genuinely free. University is a place where you can do anything at your own discretion. Just do whatever you are interested in or want to try. Of course, not only with academic work but also part-time jobs and hobbies are important. In any case, please visit new places and get a lot of inspiration. Each experience of success and failure will surely enrich your life. Hiroshima Jogakuin University has an environment where you can make the most of your successes and failures. Please look forward to meeting the teachers who are kind and give you advice, and your wonderful friends!

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CN looks back fondly on her days at HJU

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One of the real strengths of the curriculum at the Department of International English (KEG) is the sheer range of options of types of classes that students can choose from. There is a very wide range of culture, language, and topic-based classes, and in this article, I would like to talk about one of my personal favorites, Environment & Society.
(国際英語学科のカリキュラムの真の強みの一つは、学生が選択できる授業の種類や選択肢が本当に幅広いことです。文化や言語、特定のトピックに基づいた授業など非常に幅広い科目があります。この記事では、私が個人的に好きなEnvironment & Sociery (環境と社会)の授業について紹介します。)

This course explores many different perspectives on how human society and the natural world connect. So, we look at things like ethics, institutions, and the concept of 'nature'. One great thing about all the classes at KEG is the active learning and smaller group sizes, which means there is always time and space for every student to share their ideas and opinions.

Some content of this course is quite challenging, however, one of the methods of teaching I use is a huge range of activity types. One week the students might be interviewing their family and friends about their impression of photos of imperfect vegetables, the next they might be taking an object from their home and trying to find out where all the different parts come from and how it was made, and in another week they might be asked to be the spokesperson for a tree in a dispute.

As we are coming to the end of the semester, the students are in groups working on their 'objects' presentations. They take an ordinary object or idea from the world and discuss it from the various perspectives we have looked at throughout the course. They even create, assign, and grade homework assignments for each other.

I've asked some of the groups to talk about their impressions of the course, what they've learned in researching their own presentations, and why they recommend that high school students consider studying with us here at KEG!

First, we hear from RS and HS, who gave an interesting presentation about Wolves.

In this class, you can think about familiar topics such as protecting the environment, from new and interesting perspectives such as ethics, and anthropocentric and ecocentric approaches. It was an interesting class where I was able to learn how human society and nature interact with each other. We gave a presentation on the theme of whether it is ethically permissible to reintroduce extinct wolves through human intervention and restore the ecosystem, and who has the right to decide on this. It was a difficult topic, but it changed our view of "nature" and was a very meaningful project for us.

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RS & HS tackle the ethical problems of human intervention in ecosystems

Next, we hear from KO and MH, who based their final project around the deceptively tricky issue of french fries!

Throughout this class, we have come to understand how the environment and human society are related to, and influence, each other. We've looked at the basis of our concept(s) of 'nature', and what ethical reasoning looks like when it is applied to the natural environment. We looked at the global phenomenon of french fries, and how monocultural agricultural methods impact society and the environment, mainly from the viewpoint of risk and ethics. It's an interesting chance to think about environmental and social issues not only from Japan but also from a global perspective, which changes the way you look at the world and your daily life. I recommend this course to people who want to break the dull routine of daily life! Let's start by thinking about french fries, and then explore the environment!

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KO & MH explored monocultures and consumer expectations of standardisation

And finally, AH and NK chose the issue of plastic bottles. This familiar topic in standard environmental classes is a great chance to see why this course asks students to go much more deeply into understanding a specific issue and see it from different angles.

We learned about the intersection of humans and nature through the issue of PET water bottles, which is considered to be a major global problem, from various perspectives. Even though we thought we were familiar with PET bottles, we actually gained a lot of new knowledge by looking at ways of thinking about the environment and society. For example, we learned there are big differences in reasons for buying PET bottles of water between people living in developed countries, and people living in developing countries, where plastic water bottles are very important. So, through the class, we were able to learn new things about seemingly familiar problems.

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AH & NK looked at how developing and developed countries think about water differently

If you're interested in improving your English and learning about topics like this, and many others, please see our department website, and why not visit one of our Open Campus events! You can hear from not only teachers but also current students!

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