The Study Abroad Newsletter

An Unforgettable Experience

Andre Brouillette

Kinesiology major
Rikkyo University, Japan

Student in front of Disney castle This past year, from August 2017 to Spring 2018, was without a doubt the best year of my life. I studied abroad at Rikkyo University in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, as a business major. From the start things were great: I lived in a dormitory that was a fifteen minute walk from the University. It was the first dormitory I’ve been to in my live, which I was excited about. Over the first few months, I made Canadian, Danish, French, and Chinese friends. We considered each other family.

Literally, everyone was in the same boat as you, and living together makes that "study abroad bond" stronger. After returning from studying abroad, you'll keep these connections and can visit them in their home countries later.

I have many crazy stories: however, the craziest experience was with someone from my dorm. We went out to sing karaoke. We thought it was an "all you can sing with drinks included" type of place, but after five hours of dedicated singing and a table of drinks... the bill was an astonishing $500. So, let’s just say we didn’t go out to sing karaoke for a while after that.

Festival with blossoming trees In my second semester, I decided to move to an apartment in the Saitama prefecture, since one of my goals was to improve my cooking skills and my dorm didn’t have a kitchen. I can honestly say that trying to find a nice apartment that accepted studying abroad students in a different country where people don't always speak English was the most challenging and rewarding experience I’ve ever had. The shift to a life of crammed morning trains and heading home early in Japan was new for me. But, it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, since my family got to visit me in Japan and stay with me for free!

After studying abroad, the adventure definitely didn't end. I already have plans on visiting Canada and France with my new friends. Also my Japanese has improved tremendously since I was forced to practice constantly, whether it was in class or just buying a drink from the convince store.

Japan is a whole different world and I am grateful to have experienced it. Japan, you are unforgettable.