Have you ever heard of the term “career design”? Career designing is the process of thinking about what you are aiming to achieve through your career, and making a plan to realize it. In recent years, Japanese universities are starting to establish a course that specializes in career designing. So, what is your dream for the future? What do you want to do?
To everyone who is aiming to enter a university or to study in Japan, we would like to ask you to take a minute and think about these questions, in order to clarify your thoughts about your future career design. Since you must have been busy studying at school, perhaps you have never thought about such things. Or maybe your teacher or your parents told you to do this or that, and you have been doing them as you were told. However, we would like you to take this opportunity to reflect about yourself and your future plans. We recommend that you do this by writing down your thoughts and seeing yourself objectively.
“What were the things you liked, and what were you not good at? How did you stand up to what you were not good at, how did you think and overcame it?”
What are the things that you feel passionate about and devote yourself in? On the contrary, what are the things you never want to do, whatever the others say? What do you think is the reason that you dislike it? Maybe you can read a book about history for hours, but solving math problems might soon cause a headache before you find the answer to the second question. Maybe you love to draw cartoons and you can keep working on it forever, but you can’t make a proper move during basketball games in your physical education class. Likes and dislikes vary by person. Some people would say that they will concentrate on things that they love, and refuse to do what they hate, but some might try things like just playing with a basketball, or watching basketball games on TV, and become interested in the sport, no longer hating it.
“What kind of student life experience are you looking for in Japan and why?”
Why did you decide to go to Japan instead of studying in your home country? Maybe it was because there were faculties in Japanese universities that were not in your home country’s universities. Maybe it was because you have always been interested in Japan. Or perhaps you were watching Japanese anime and came to have a feeling of closeness to Japan. Each of you might have a different reason. But it’s ridiculous to pay lots of money to come to Japan, if you are going to spend your time in Japan without any thinking. Some of you might like traveling, and you might be planning to make use of the knowledge of tourism industry you studied in Japan when you go back to your home country. Or maybe some of you are thinking about visiting various restaurants, working part-time, going to school, and broadening your range of cooking techniques. Perhaps some of you want to leave your home country for once in order to see it through an objective perspective. There must be some reason of your own.
“What do you want to do in the future? How will you use your strengths? If you think your strength is not enough, what should you focus on now?”
What kind of work do you want to do and how do you want your life to be? Entering a university or a vocational school should be your starting point, not your goal. So, when you succeed in entering the school or department of your choice, how would you proceed with your study from there? You will need to gain not only academic knowledge but also experience. How would you gain that experience?
Your future plans will be based on how you have thought and acted so far. What were the things you enjoyed in your school life? What do you remember the most? What were the things you made your greatest efforts? What kind of thinking was the basis of your actions? Knowing yourself is the first step to find the path you should pursue.