Ten students of University of Aizu (UoA) had three-weeks short-term Oversea Programs at the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology USA on UoA's short-term Overseas Study Programs for Academic year 2018.
Here are their reports of their research and daily life in USA.
・Ms. Eri Miyaoka（a first-year student）
・Ms. Shion Yagi（a first-year student）
・Mr. Yuhei Yamaya（a first-year student）
・Mr. Shogen Ikoma（a first-year student）
・Ms. Taeko Yoshii（a first-year student）
・Mr. Yuki Matsushita（a first-year student）
・Mr. Kentaro Ogi（a first-year student）
・Mr. Ryo Kanazawa（a first-year student）
・Mr. Yoshiyasu Chonan（a first-year student）
・Mr. Yuhei Morishita（a first-year student）
＊Grade during the program
◆Eri Miyaoka (a first-year student)
I went to Rose-Hulman Institute Technology (henceforth as RHIT) on the short-term study abroad. The reason why I applied for this program is, that I wanted to know my English level and I was thinking of going on a longer exchange program, so I wanted to experience what it like studying in foreign university.
At first, I was so nervous that I couldn't understand what other was saying. But I got used to what the other was talking. After that, I begin to have a small talk with the students at RHIT who were taking care of us or with a teacher who taught us English. I was really happy when people understood what I said in English, so when I found a person I know I began talking to them.
There was a class where we learned programing when we were at RHIT. That class is different from the normal classes. We first had to watch a video and then take a test before coming to class, and if there were stuff you couldn't understand you just bring those questions to the next class and ask the professor about it. I thought it was quite unique.
The knowledge and experience that I gained at this program, I will use it for the long term exchange program.
◆Shion Yagi（a first-year student）
My consciousness was changed by this short-term study aboard. First, my reason why I applied for the study aboard was to develop language skills and to get desire to improve myself of programming. I wanted to watch difference about studying and attitude between America and Japan.
One of difference is the number of female college students. The ratio of boys to girls in our university is nine to one, but in Rose-Hulman Institute Technology (henceforth as RHIT) he is about six to four. There are fewer woman than men in both universities, but in RHIT, female college students asked their teacher about class. They also taught male students their homework. They voluntarily studied. When I watched it, I thought it is not good to do nothing more than what our teacher said us. I thought that I want to learn more.
Another is the time to touch the computer. In RHIT, the students are given their computer by their university and there are a lot of desks, chairs and sockets. That is that they can always study everywhere. I touch my computer more thought this condition. I felt ashamed to touch a computer except in our university. Because in Japan, people think a person who use it is office worker or Otaku who likes anime. Before study abroad, I wanted to touch my computer because I worried about what other people think about me. However, I take my computer out of my bag and I want to use it anywhere.
◆Yuhei Yamaya（a first-year student）
I have studied abroad at the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, which is an American university, using a three-week dispatch program.
I have two reason why I participated in this program. The first is that I wanted to live in places where Japanese is not practical in order to know what kind of students' life they have. The second is that I wanted to ask American students how they think about their future.
I ask American students how they think about their future, what dreams they have and then share their opinions. That is what I absolutely wanted to do. I actually did do this and felt that everyone is living with some goal, purpose or dream. This is what I always felt while living in the university. Especially in the class, the students asked many questions to the professor and they were extremely active, in contrasted to Japan.
I participated in this program and it was the best thing that I could change my mind for my future and that my motivation for language study was greatly improved. I would like to make use of this experience all over the place. Until I go abroad next time, I would like to make myself grow up more. Thank you very much to everyone who provided a lot of support for this program.
◆Shogen Ikoma（a first-year student）
In a nutshell, this study abroad program is totally success. I learned a lot of things, went various location and made many friends.
At first, I thought this program is aim to learn English. But it's wrong. To be honest, my English skill haven't improve so much. But I learned how to make friends with foreigner, how to survive in America. Here is detail:
In the beginning, I could get along with Korean and Indian students. As study abroad student, we can talk about each other's country, and America. This is very effective way to make friend. You may make friends easily when you talk to international student!
In America, I should say my opinion clearly. Because if I say something in very few word, they can't understand. So I manage somehow to speak in many words. At last I became good at communicate to foreigners than three weeks ago!
Totally, this program is very good. If you hesitate to participate to this program, I strongly recommend. Seeing is believing!
◆Taeko Yoshii（a first-year student）
I took a Python class (CSSE120) and an English class (ESL) for this short-term study abroad. Not only skills and knowledge for Python and English, but I learned attitude of students in the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology for their classes.
During classes, I felt free to ask teachers about anything because they always confirm us if we had questions. Although we had quizzes at the beginning of each class, their scores didn't influence our grades, but were only used to check the comprehension of the preparatory lessons. In the quizzes the teachers answered the student's questions while explaining.
Needless to say, people there have a lot of preparation and homework, so I saw many students are studying in the college. There are outlets, sofas, chairs, desks, counters, etc. anywhere in the university, and there are cafes that are open until late as well. I think they have a really good environment to study.
As people having some doubts about the main classes in Japan, the class style of Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology was fresh and enjoyable. I have seen the students of the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology say "I can't catch up with the classes if I don't study". They study seriously, so I would like to keep working on studying as students there.
◆Yuki Matsushita（a first-year student）
I thought that why I participated in this program was to improve my language skills and to broaden my perspective. And I noticed about my own language skills during this study abroad. When I actually talked with the local people, my English pronunciation was different and I could not tell what I wanted to say. However, I actually got the ability to communicate, such as using more words. And I became to want to study English more.
I took python class. I was surprised by contents of the class. In Japan, it is a mechanism to learn new knowledge in class and to do deep learning in home work, while it is a mechanism to learn new knowledge in home work and to do deep learning in class in RHIT (Rose-Hulman Institute Technology). I think that is better because there are more questions when I do deep learning and we can ask questions as soon as there is something you do not understand.
I understood the importance of telling something from my side. I had a lot of experiences at RHIT. For example, St. Patrick's Day. The town turned green on this day, and many people enjoyed it. I ate green cookies and drank green juice. I was surprised by various habits. There was a lot of customs that were different from Japan.
And I wanted to learn more languages and go to mid-term study abroad.
◆Kentaro Ogi（a first-year student）
The best thing that I feel I grow is that I could make obvious aims and achieved it. My aims are to communicate in English as much as I can and to learn the differences between Japanese culture and American culture.
I did my best to speak in English. There are English tutors in Rose-hulman Institute of Technology. The content is to talk in English with the tutor from 30 minutes to an hour. I took this tutor service as much as I could. In that, I talked about some events and parties, like to make a plan about the next meeting. I mean that I could communicate with him deeply.
Plus, when we were divided some groups in Chicago, I belonged the group that no one could speak Japanese except for me. Also, I found some tips to speak English. I feel I grow up. I could enjoy the differences between Japanese culture and American culture. The thing which is most interesting for me was the tip system. When you pay some money in a restaurant by cash, We can say 'Keep the change'. It is fantastic phrase. It makes everyone happy. To say this phrase was my small aim. I thought it becomes a nice example to explain about Win Win. Because I can not say it in Japan, It is still in my mind. This study abroad was amazing for me. To make the small aims that you experience in just another country may make you fun. I'm looking forward to talk with international students.
◆Ryo Kanazawa（a first-year student）
My goal of this program has received a lecture by Rose-Hulman Institute Technology, live in an English-speaking area, and cross-cultural exchange. I could achieve the goal.
First of all, it is a cross-cultural exchange, but through conversations with people from various countries, we have seen something different from Japan. For example, American people value each event. The Saint Patricks Day is one of them. Everybody has something green to celebrate this event, but I have no memories of making a special celebration even though for the National Day in Japan.
About living in an English-speaking area, classes start early in the morning. There were many free hours in the afternoon. I used that time for playing billiards with my friends, going to the gymnasium and had a lot of training and squashing to enjoy. About American food, all food was very delicious. Piza and hamburgers are delicious, but they are all high calories and I thought I need to exercise.
About receiving a lecture by Rose-Hulman, I have never touched my own Python, but I could understand it through this lecture. These lectures were very different from those at the University of Aizu. The number of students who attended the class is also different. It was about 20 students. There were several supporters and they answered my question.
Through this program I was able to feel familiar to overseas. I was also interested in mid-term study abroad. If someone is thinking about joining this program, please join it.
◆Yoshiyasu Chonan（a first-year student）
I was able to successfully complete my study abroad program at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. Before studying abroad, I felt honestly anxious and felt that I would be scared to go. There were a lot of negative emotions, such as what I could do if I could not communicate because I was not good at English. I write about what I experienced, what I gained through those experiences, and what I was able to grow in such an unconventional program.
First of all, I was surprised when I arrived at the Rose-Hulman in the United States, that the facilities were very fulfilling. I felt cold enough so that I could cope with it locally in a cold area, where the temperature was below 0 ° C at the maximum temperature, but I did not feel any cold at all in the campus, and I made sure to create an environment in which students and professors were considered. Furthermore, you can become familiar with not only the field of engineering but also a wide range of fields, such as labs for making cars, high-pressure water equipment that cuts even hard materials such as diamonds, and laboratories for preparing chemical substances. It was one of the points I was very interested. There are other facilities besides places related to study, such as sports grounds. The sports ground is divided into indoor and outdoor, and I think that there are facilities such as swimming pool, gymnasium, exercise room, 400m track outside, soccer ground, baseball ground and so well enough for me. When I asked the local students (roommates) if they had any dissatisfaction with the facilities of this university, they said that the annual payment was not too small, but there were no complaints about the facilities. As you can see, Rose-Hulman has made enough capital investment to satisfy the students. I thought that I could no longer have such a valuable experience, so while studying abroad, I was able to take advantage of the facilities with basketball and training in the training room together with the local students.
Next is the class I received locally. We studied the programming language Python. The contents were not so difficult, but there were many situations such as English lectures that suffered from understanding in English. However, I had a time to ask questions, and I was able to finally understand it. There was also an English class. The course policy was to always have a conversation with everyone, and rather to solve problems. It was something that everyone enjoyed using English.
The last is about interaction with local students. They are very kind and very caring. For example, if you want to take a meal, or if you want to go shopping, they take you there by car. And at the same time, you can enjoy with them. It is full of gratitude and help. There were a lot of kind people who seemed to want to interact again.
Through these experiences, I believe that communication in English is important, of course, but the will to communicate is the most important. As with the cultural differences between Japan and the United States, I thought that his/her will is very important to understand the differences in order to live in a foreign country. This intention is essential not only for conversations with people abroad, but also for the students who want to be engineers like us, such as developing new ideas in teams and developing with teams in the future. It is an element. After studying abroad, I would like to use this valuable experience to work on various things, and if I have the opportunity, I would like to try medium- and long-term study abroad again.
Photo: Dormitory Photo: With my roommate
◆Yuhei Morishita（a first-year student）
I studied Programing and English and experienced good 3 weeks with good Rose-hulman's student, teacher and other people in Rose-hulman Institute Technology.
And we worked on showing Japanese culture to them. For example, we cooked Japanese foods that are- -miso soup, 'Onigiri', 'Shiratama' and doing presentation and fair that are Japanese culture for them.
And we went to Chicago and Indianapolis for sightseen. In Chicago, we went to big museum and mall and ate Chicago pizza. In Indianapolis, we went to mall. And the day that we went to Indianapolis was St Patrick day. Many people were putting on green costume on the day. It is very good experience for me.
After this program, I improved my English a little bit. And I knew that American try to understand my incomplete English. So, I appreciate to them.