Japanese students visit La Trobe University (Issue 44, 2010)


Mr Marshall with one of the students

A group of Japanese students from Hiroshima University visited La Trobe as part of an introductory study tour to the University.

The students were accompanied by Hiroshima University staff and they spent six days familiarising themselves with the University and the Australian culture.

Students were formally welcomed at the Davidson Room by Mr Larry Marshall, Project Manager for the Centre for Dialogue, Mr Leon Lyell, Executive Director, International Relations and Ms Elise Foxworth, Japanese studies lecturer.

The action-packed schedule organised by La Trobe Abroad staff included a ‘scavenger hunt’ around the scenic La Trobe Melbourne campus, lectures on multiculturalism, Japanese studies, and Aboriginal history and culture at La Trobe, and fun activities, such as quizzes, lawn bowls and a tour of the La Trobe Wildlife Sanctuary.

On the second day of their tour, the visitors interacted with La Trobe international students during an ice breaker activity, followed by an Australian lingo and an origami session.  Junko Yamauchi, a Japanese exchange student taking marketing and management subjects at La Trobe, talked to the visiting students about her past seven months studying here, her highlights and her achievements.

‘What I enjoyed most in Australia was meeting new people not only from Australia but also from different countries. I could learn about other cultures through making new friends and I realised that I had lived in a small world before I came here,’ said Junko.

The closing ceremony at the end of the tour was an emotional event, with many of the students having to say goodbye to new friends they made during their stay. The Japanese students sang a song of farewell and Mr Marshall and Mr Lyell made speeches.'

'You can’t make something work unless you have your eyes open, your mind open, and your heart open,’ said Mr Marshall congratulating the students for their cross-cultural adaptability.

The students took turns in thanking the La Trobe team for the welcome and commenting on the highlights of the week.