Takuma TAKAOKA (Environmental Science and Technology)

Name Takuma TAKAOKA
Faculty Environmental Science and Technology
Dormitory International Student Shared House
Period of stay April 2019 to March 2021

Why Did I Apply?

The main reason why I wanted to move into International Student Shared House was because I wanted to be able to improve my language skills through daily life with international students. I stayed in Ireland in March 2019 for about a month of short-term language training, and I felt that it would be a shame to end my study abroad period and go back to living only in Japanese after I had gotten used to being immersed in English. I wasn’t confident in my language skills at all, and to be honest, I was more worried than anything else, but I thought, “It’s not every day that I get the chance to live in a International Student Shared House with international students, so why not give it a try?” and applied.

What I Experienced Living in International Student Shared House

This is my second year living in International Student Shared House, and I’ve had some tough times, especially in my first year last year. I have lived with six roommates so far. They are from different places, speak different languages, and have very different lifestyles and ways of thinking. As I lived with these roommates, I sometimes encountered small problems, and I had to think about how I could better communicate my feelings and how I could make everyone feel more comfortable. To be honest, it was hard because there were things that I would never think about living alone, but I remember how happy I was when I felt that I was getting to know my roommate a little better every day.

I didn’t expect it before I moved in, but I learned a lot about Japan through living in International Student Shared House. I was often asked about Japanese culture by international students, and each time I was asked, I learned something new through research. One of my unit mates who recently came from China is a fan of Enka (Japanese traditional style ballad), and he teaches me about Enka songs and Enka singers that I don’t know. In addition, when I asked the international students about Japan and the image of Japanese people overseas, I was able to hear new images of Japan that I had not felt when I was living in Japan. Things that I had taken for granted in my 20 years of living in Japan were not taken for granted by international students. I was once asked by an international student who had no concept of honorifics, “Why do Japanese people respect their elders?”. I was at a loss for a response. One of the great things about living in International Student Shared House is that you have the opportunity to think about things that you may have always thought were just the way things were, but now that you think about it, you’re really wondering why.

Although there are many hardships, I am very happy to have lived in International Student Shared House. I was able to interact with international students and Okadai students that I would never have met if I had not chosen to live in International Student Shared House, and more than anything, I enjoy spending every day with such people. I think it was the right decision to be brave enough to apply.

Message to Applicants

If you have even the slightest interest in living in International Student Shared House, please take the plunge and give it a try. This year, due to the influence of COVID-19, I feel like there are fewer new encounters and interactions than usual, but living in International Student Shared House, you can enjoy a fulfilling life with international students from various countries and regions, as well as the kind and friendly Japanese residents. Now that you’re a university student, why not make irreplaceable memories?