There is a special time in a student’s life where he feels the desire to get out of his comfort zone and experience something new that will help him grow deeper as a person.
There is a special time in a student’s life where he feels the desire to get out of his comfort zone and experience something new that will help him grow deeper as a person. That particular time came into my life when the opportunity to be part of the SHS-AdC & Eiko Gakuen Student Exchange Program was opened for me and I decided to come in.
Being an exchange student for two weeks at Eiko Gakuen in Japan has been an extraordinary event in my life as it gave me a mosaic of wonderful and fulfilling experiences. At first, it was difficult to adapt since everything was new – the food, the people, the lifestyle, and many more. However, as the days passed by, I was quick to adapt since my foster family welcomed me with open arms. It was great to see how my foster family would treat me as one of their sons. They would often bring me to famous tourist places that are educational, at the same time, fun. They would always sacrifice their time to be able to spend it with me.
From these, I realized that for every experience, there is an invisible certificate attached to it: a lesson that will be my guide in life. My experience of being part of this program enriched my knowledge about the Japanese culture and the value of sacrifice. It increased my self-awareness of being responsible since I had to do things independently – no more yayas and parents to help me prepare for my day-to-day experience. It honed my values as a student, as a person, and as a citizen of the world.
Moreover, my two-week stay in Japan stretched the horizon of my values and principles. As I got connected with individuals of the Japanese culture and built good and healthy relationships with them, my eyes were more widely opened to the realities of life – realities that we are not the only people in this world and therefore we need to learn how to live with other people as well. We have to communicate with our hearts to show that we care. It became a cure for my homesickness – to enjoy the places where I am, to love the people around me, and to explore different cultures and traditions while not forgetting my own.
All these realizations and experiences of being an exchange student further honed my personality, knowledge, skills and values – something that I am grateful for. As a future businessman, I believe that this is a great preparation for the career that I will walk through in the future.