Messages from Graduates

Messages from Graduates

As a cabin attendant

Aiko Nawa
(Graduated in 2007, working at All Nippon Airways)

I entered ANA in June 2007, and currently work as a cabin attendant in Tokyo, flying to places all over the country. A cabin attendant is different from customer service on the ground, and doubles as security work, ensuring the safety of passengers and the plane. It’s a heavy responsibility, but my time here, meeting many different colleagues and passengers, has been exciting and fulfilling.

Now that I have had time to enter society and work, I’m once again glad I enrolled at Kobe University’s Faculty of Intercultural Studies. The main reason for this is the fact that I was able to coordinate and learn the specific subjects in which I was interested. I remained in the Information Theory seminar, learning how to use computers for communication. When I first heard the introduction to Information Theory, it was completely out of my field of knowledge, and I understood almost none of it. But at the same time, I was fascinated and applied for the Information Theory seminar. In my graduation thesis, I researched using networks to fly the planes I love. It is now a very good memory.

The Faculty of Intercultural Studies has, as one of its greatest traits, a very friendly and familiar atmosphere. Personally, I was able to build good relationships with the professors and, of course, the students I lived with. There is also a broad, all-encompassing environment here that will allow you to study and learn as long as you have the slightest interest in the faculty. I hope that you will all be able to make good use of your time in high school, and enjoy a good university life in the faculty.


A time painted the colors you chose

Ken Tanii
(Graduated in 2005, working at the NHK Morioka broadcast station)

In April, it will be seven years since I graduated from the Faculty of Intercultural Studies.
At my workplace, I work with people of many different fields and backgrounds: law, finance and physics, to take a few examples.
As far as I am concerned, the main purpose of university life is to build up a “base.”
Society asks what value we can produce as an individual.
The ability to create value is a matter of overall personality, combining mental and emotional aspects.
Whether conscious or not, I feel that many of my experiences in university have eventually tied into this.
Some enter university with a clear view of their goals, and some do not.
Part-time work, education, overseas education, founding a business, traveling, creative work, romance – depending on your choices, your university life can be painted in any color you choose.
The greatest treasure from my time at university was everything I shared with my friends in the faculty. The existence of a place where I could be myself without any apprehension, speak my mind and search for a point of mutual interest to discuss is, I think, something that contributes a great deal to my work today.
The times ahead are uncertain at best in this day and age, which means that each of you will matter more than ever. If you attend the Faculty of Intercultural Studies, try to create a personalized, worthwhile university life for yourself. There is no “correct” answer. In an eighty-year life, there is plenty of time to take back or fix any mistakes.
This faculty offers plenty of freedom to pursue exactly what you want, and your life will almost certainly be richer for it.

Abandon your preconceptions and think globally!

Yuriko Konishi
(Graduated in 2006, working at the Osaka prefectural government office)

In June 2010, I completed my two-year tour in Morocco as part of the JICA Overseas Cooperation Volunteers and returned to Japan. In Morocco, I helped to open after-school classes, set up local organizations, create local specialty goods and open up more trade and commerce. I lived in the same way as the people there, working together for a very fulfilling everyday experience. The reason I decided to do this, as well as why I was able to do everything I did in the past two years, has a lot to do with what I learned at the Faculty of Intercultural Studies.

At the faculty, I was in the Cultural Anthropology seminar. Fieldwork took us to Vietnam and the Philippines, teaching us a lot about the basics of fieldwork. Also in Morocco, I started by remembering the fieldwork procedure I had learned at university, giving questionnaires to the residents and figuring out their needs. I also used the exchange program to study in Utah University in the US, where I learned that the “obvious” is painfully meaningless in another culture. This made me learn how to communicate properly in another culture.

Currently, I work as an administrative officer in the Osaka prefectural government office. A public servant’s work is varied, but in the end, I feel it comes down to reading the needs of the residents and creating a healthier, happier and more beautiful Osaka. For that, I believe that it’s necessary to take a more global view of matters without retaining any preconceptions. I want to improve Osaka by bringing all my experience in university and JICA to bear.

Please make sure that you spend your time at the faculty well, and you will soon reach your dreams!

Guide to the Syokakukai

Gentarou Kato, Syokakukai president

Syokakukai is an alumni association set up in March 1997, taking one kanji from Tsurukabuto, home of the Faculty of Intercultural Studies and Intercultural Research Department, and syo, meaning “to soar”, with the wish that the alumni will fly freely into the world.

Kobe University has an annual university-wide Homecoming Day, and we work together with teachers and staff to create events the visiting graduates would enjoy. Many of us are graduates ourselves, hoping to give thanks to the university that helped us grow. The Syokakukai exists not only to deepen bonds between graduates, but also to emphasize connections with current students and bridging the gap between them.

For instance, we work with the Career Design Center to help students find work in a variety of ways, such as providing introductions and recommendations or financial aid. Additionally, we do what little we can to provide a better student life all around, by giving financial aid to the orientations for newcomers and the graduation celebrations.

For a more detailed overview of our activities, please visit the association’s home page, at You will be able to see the group’s activities, as well as pictures of alumni meetings and more.

Faculty of Intercultural Studies/ Graduate School of Intercultural Studies, Kobe University
1-2-1, Tsurukabuto, Nada-ku, Kobe, JAPAN 657-8501