Fanshawe Student Dives Into Japanese Culture
Ibaraki Cultural Exchange
When Fanshawe student Clayton Greene discovered he could spend part of his studies on an international exchange, he jumped at the chance.
"I saw the notice for an exchange to Japan on Fanshawe's WebAdvisor site and since I love to travel, I applied," Clayton says. "I think studying abroad can change a person's perspective and helps you appreciate your own home and culture more."
Clayton, a Computer Programmer Analyst student, will be studying basic Japanese language and taking a communications course, which will have lecture and tutorial components, at Ibaraki Christian University during the month of May.
"I will also be acting as an ambassador and speaking with local school children," he says. "I am eager to share stories of our country and perhaps change some of the beliefs the Japanese may have about Canada."
Clayton will keep up with his studies at Fanshawe through online learning. "Distance learning is the way education is going in the future," he says. "My professors at Fanshawe are deeply involved in technology and are extremely supportive of the online learning environment."
While Clayton knows he will experience cultural and language barriers in Japan, he is embracing the opportunity. "I strongly believe in travelling and living outside your comfort spot," he says. "It's a challenge but it can cause a person to grow and become more resilient to difficulties and problems you may face at home or school."
During his travels, there is one place Clayton will visit where he knows he'll understand the language. "I am an avid scuba diver and have been given an opportunity to go out with the Tokyo Dive Club," he says. "As divers, we have our own hand signs and language, so underwater, there are no language barriers."
Clayton is excited for a new experience and to soak in a different culture. "The idea that I could dive off a boat while looking at Mount Fuji seems surreal. We'll see if this dream becomes a reality."