I'm a bit shy, so I didn't make too many friends, and having the opportunity to practice Japanese in a practical speaking sense was very helpful!

Dylan from Winter 2016

Which events or activities did you find the most satisfying and why?

The U.S. Culture Class -- getting the chance to go outside of the school-to-dorm bubble was absolutely invaluable to me as somebody who didn't apply for a homestay, and the lectures, especially those by non-faculty, gave me a breadth of information that certainly piqued my interest in the history of Japan. I may have learned Japanese in class, but I will continue to learn Japanese in large part due to this.

Which co-curriculum classes did you find most satisfying?

English Support. Kato-sensei is extremely helpful! Please treasure her!

Why did you select this program?

Frankly, it seemed like the best. The other programs I looked at were either heavily geared towards Chinese and Korean students or prohibitively expensive. Plus, KCP has a long history and a LOT of alumni who openly praise the program online--and I hope to be among them!

What were the most productive and interesting aspects of the program for you? The least interesting and productive?

The doubled focus on academics and cultural experiences was easily the most valuable aspect to me, in that it gave me the educational grounding I came for as well as a huge exposure to Japan that I didn't entirely expect. If I had to name anything as the least interesting, it would have to be the pace, unfortunately--I normally have no problem staying on top of things, but KCP has been very hard for me to keep up with, as the lessons move by much too fast for me to really internalize them. So I find myself still studying three lessons behind, while trying to keep up with the current one, and doing homework based in-between, and preparing for a test... I understand, though, that this speed is a necessity of the curriculum's entire organization, so I don't see how it could be solved. But that was my experience.

What activities or materials did you find most helpful (e.g., pair work, drill practice, tests, small group sessions, textbooks, games)?

Drill practice and pair work. I'm a bit shy, so I didn't make too many friends, and having the opportunity to practice Japanese in a practical speaking sense was very helpful!

What did you find most valuable in the Culture Course?

I spoke of this previously, but everything about the course was valuable to me. The opportunity to gain a wider scope of Japan, to see places besides just the dorm and school areas with my classmates, the lectures to give insight on history and day-to-day life--it might be rote to somebody who lives in a homestay, but as a dorm student, it was the highlight of my time at KCP.

Where did you live?


Were you pleased with the general living arrangements? Anything you especially liked? Any problems you experienced?

I was off-put at first, but quickly grew comfortable. Ikebukuro is an extremely cool and quiet place, exactly right for me--and the short distance to school helps! My only complaint might be that the dorm manager is so often gone and isn't easy to get a hold of. However, I never had any problems that it was necessary to contact him quickly, so that did not become an issue.

Any further thoughts or tips for those considering the program or new KCP students?

For English-speakers: do not come to KCP with no or very little prior knowledge of Japanese! Technically it's possible, but you'll be spending the entire time playing catch-up, and it'll be much more stressful. If you can, then blast through a few units of Rosetta Stone first, or take a couple of semesters in your home school if they offer it. If you can't, then expect to be working very hard to keep up.

Any other comments or suggestions?

I didn't get a chance to mention them, but my praise goes out to Tanaka-san and Ryuuhei-san -- those two work very hard, and are some of the kindest people I've ever met. Please make sure they're well appreciated.

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Past and present students share their thoughts and experiences on studying in Japan.

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KCP’s Summer (short) term program fit my personal schedule very well. It was also the most professional and affordable program that I could find. It also included a cultural aspect to its education program that I appreciated.

—Allison Hoisl