I was very blessed to already have friends that lived in Japan thanks to Guilford College’s and Kansai Gaidai’s partnership. My close friend, Asuka, and her family took me under their wing and gave me that familial support that I was lacking. We have so many wonderful memories together from making mochi to playing board games late at night in their home!
Kansai Gaidai University’s East Asian studies program draws in students from all over the world. There were students from Finland, Germany, Canada, France, Jordan, Argentina, and so many more! We were truly a global community! I made so many amazing friends that I know will last me a lifetime. We have wonderful memories from enjoying Osaka’s vibrant nightlife to doing hanami and enjoying the beautiful cherry blossoms in full bloom.
Even though my time in Japan was cut a bit short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I was able to stay until early May and made unforgettable memories with my friends as we quarantined together. Saying goodbye to Japan was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. It is truly my second home and I cannot wait until I can return to continue making amazing memories!