The Fukuoka city skyline. (Image credit: GaijinPot)

SNHU Study Abroad opens a new door to Asia. Aichi Shukutoku University(ASU) in Nagoya and Seinan Gakuin University (SGU) in Fukuoka are the two new partners.

The Office of Study Abroad finalized two exchange agreements with these two universities. The program will officially start sending students to Japan in the Fall of 2017.

“This is a unique opportunity for our students to engage, enjoy and benefit from a different study abroad experience,” said the director of Study Abroad and Exchange Program, Stefano Parenti.

According to Parenti, this partnership will be above and beyond the traditional and most common programs, such as U.K., Italy and Ireland where students go the most.

The International Student Services office worked with the Office of Study Abroad to select the best universities where SNHU students can benefit from.

In Japan, through the whole program, courses focus on Japanese culture and society, extracurricular activities, housing, etc. Students could be “exposed to the beauty of differences,” said Parenti. “We believe that the engagement with different perspectives helps develop awareness, in terms of alternatives, for a more critical approach to life.”

Parenti visited both universities, ASU and SGU. The Japanese peaceful society and culture amazed him. “My thoughts were captured by the harmony of this peaceful society, by the genuine and authentic kindness of its people and their idea about social responsibility,” said Parenti.

ASU adopts “living with diversity” as its philosophy for education. “The pillar of our education is to nurture the ability, knowledge and skills of students while deepening their understanding of each other regardless of their culture, nationality, religion, age, gender, or disability,” said Parenti.

This university has two campuses, Hoshigaoka, located in Nagoya, the heartland of Japan, and another located in Nagoya’s neighboring city of Nagakute.

Osaka and Tokyo are easily accessible from Nagoya. “It takes about 1 or 2 hours by bullet train respectively,” said Parenti. At ASU, students can take a wide range of communication courses in English, along with a two-week intensive Japanese language program.

However, there will be some challenges that study abroad students might face, such as the language barrier. Not a lot of Japanese speak English.

SGU is one of the top comprehensive universities in Fukuoka, Japan. This university currently accepts international students from 68 institutions in 21 countries all over the world. The office of Study Abroad and its new partners believe that the new program of Global Communication is the perfect fit for SNHU students.

On the other hand, Japan is also not a traditional destination for students interested in studying abroad. “We need to build the culture of study abroad with the help of our faculty. We need to share that the world is not only Italy, U.K. or even America,” said Parenti. “There are many other wonderful places where we can learn other perspectives.”

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