Amazing is really the only word that can describe my experience at the INU Student Seminar in Japan. I am so unbelievably grateful to Flinders University for giving me the opportunity to attend the seminar; it was a truly unforgettable experience.
Here is a photo of me exploring Saijo
Not only did the seminar offer a variety of Japanese cultural experiences, but it also offered an in-depth view into the atomic bomb in Hiroshima. Hearing an account from a survivor, along with visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, really brought home the level of devastation experienced by Hiroshima, devastation that still echoes today.
Through lectures, workshops, and a UN role-play, students were able learn about gender in a global context. It was interesting to examine how gender is perceived in different cultures, along with all the variables that can affect gender. For me the UN role-play was by far he highlight of all the planned activities. It involved hard work and late nights, but in the end was such a fun day. The role-play really emphasised how differing cultural interests and norms in relation to gender can effect negotiations, and vastly strengthened my understanding of international relations.
What I am most grateful for was the opportunity to meet and interact with students from all over the globe. I have made genuine friendships that will last far beyond the seminar. Shout outs must go to all of my group members, both Japanese and those from other countries, who made the experience so very special. Additionally, I was extremely impressed with how fluent the all the students were in English. In particular, the Japanese student’s level of English was outstanding. They were very helpful to all of us foreigners, especially those like me who spoke no Japanese (my main form of communication was pointing and smiling).
This is a picture of all the wonderful students in my assigned country group.
I would strongly recommend anyone with an interest in global citizenship to apply in future years, this program is truly outstanding.
Here is a picture of the Flinders University students and staff at the INU role-play.