|Faculty||Environmental and Life Science|
|Period of stay||March 2019 to March 2020|
Why Did I Apply?
From the time I entered university, the interactions I had with Japanese and international students at L-Café and other places were very stimulating for me. I thought it would be fun to come into contact with new values and cultures, so I applied to live in International Student Shared House for one year when I was a third-year undergraduate student. At that time, I admired the senior RAs who were enjoying living in the dormitory and organizing a diverse group of students, and that was the reason why I applied to become an RA. I wanted to develop my ability to express my opinions and take action through this activity.
What I Learned and What I Liked about Being an RA
There were only 8 RAs for about 150 international students, and I felt a great sense of responsibility for managing the dormitory myself, so I learned a lot from this experience. In particular, I think the experience of working together with the university staff and dormitory managers is very valuable. Personally, I had a tendency to take on a lot of work on my own, so I think it was important for me to learn the importance of asking others for help and cooperation.
The good thing is that I have found a new community. As a graduate student, I was worried about balancing my research, but having a place to stay separate from my laboratory was a plus. As an RA, you will have the opportunity to meet many students in your daily life and at events. Talking to people you wouldn’t normally meet or make friends with can help you think more flexibly and give you a chance to reevaluate yourself. This is also true for RAs who see each other a lot. RAs are fascinating people and a lot of fun!
How Do I Want to Use This Experience in the Future?
I believe that the qualities that I will learn through RA activities, such as English, communication, and the ability to understand different cultures, are all things that I will need in my personal and professional life in the future. I would like to use this experience to further develop these qualities when I enter the workforce so that I can play an active role globally as an engineer.
Message to Applicants
I have never studied abroad for a long period of time, so this opportunity to manage a dormitory for international students and engage in cross-cultural exchange was a valuable experience and definitely a major turning point in my life. There are many different kinds of people in RA, including those who are fluent in English, those who like to discuss, and those who are good at working in harmony with others. If you have a desire to help make dormitory life better, I am sure you will be welcomed to do what you like and what you are good at. Above all, it’s great fun to work on something while cooperating with a wide variety of people. I hope this experience will be useful for those who want to have this kind of experience in their university life, and for those who want to challenge themselves in a new community based on their past experiences.