Ms. Koh, who has acquired Japanese proficiency at Tokyo Galaxy Japanese Language School since April 2019, has passed the entrance exam for the Jewelry Creator Course, a specialized course for studying jewelry craft technique at Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry.
We asked her in detail about her life studying abroad at Tokyo Galaxy, and the key to succeeding with the entrance exam for Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry.
Please tell us how you are feeling now, after successfully passing the entrance exam for Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry.
I started studying abroad in Japan last year and have set my goal to go on to a vocational school in Japan. It seems that the efforts I have made so far have paid off, and I am really glad. I’m also excited to study in a new environment.
Would you name any teacher of Tokyo Galaxy Japanese Language School who you would like to express your gratitude?
I’ve been studying for quite a long time at Tokyo Galaxy, so I had many opportunities to hear lectures of good teachers. All of my teachers were nice and kind, but if I have to choose someone, I would say that Ms. Kaida and Ms. Okamoto are the ones I feel most grateful to. They helped me a lot, not only on studying Japanese but also with my life abroad as a foreign student. I also received lots of kind and helpful advice on my preparation for entering Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry.
What do you think was the key to your success with the entrance exam?
I think that there were two things. One is that I concentrated on studying in my classes each and every day, and the other thing is that I always tried to extend my knowledge based on what I learned in my classes.
While attending Tokyo Galaxy, I stepped up from the afternoon basic class to the morning intermediate class, so I became able to take the optional subjects. I chose to take classes that suit my goal of going on to a Japanese vocational school. One of those classes was the essay writing class, and my teacher gave me specific comments on my essay, which helped me a lot with the essay test at Hiko Mizuno’s entrance exam. I was able to put it together well with no particular mistakes.
Your Japanese has improved so much compared with the time when you entered Tokyo Galaxy. How have you been studying so far?
At the time I entered Tokyo Galaxy, I could read only hiragana and couldn’t even speak basic Japanese. So I had to start from the most elementary class, but I was convinced that whatever I study, the more I make effort in studying it, the more I get better. So I did preparations and review before and after each school lesson, and also studied by myself using textbooks I bought when I was living in South Korea. As I did so, my Japanese proficiency improved so much before I knew it. I became more confident in using Japanese, and it became even more enjoyable to study Japanese. Although I started from the beginner class, I made it to the advanced class before even realizing it. Now the contents of the lessons are getting more difficult and I have to learn a lot of things, but I’ll continue to study steadily as I have always done.
Can you name any impressive lessons in Tokyo Galaxy that you have taken so far?
It’s the “Learning Japanese through songs” class that I am currently taking. It might be pretty boring if all of my classes were preparations for entrance exams, so I’m glad that there are some enjoyable classes like this one. I’m enjoying this class recently, because you can study with interest while having fun.
What made you decide to enroll in Tokyo Galaxy?
I know that there are so many Japanese language schools in Japan, but of all of them, I believe that Tokyo Galaxy has the best facilities and the kindest teachers. Above all, Tokyo Galaxy holds a variety of events for its current and prospective students, and that was the biggest reason I decided to enter this school. I knew Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry, the school I’m going to enroll, at an event held at Tokyo Galaxy.
Now I come to think of it, It was fortunate of me to choose Tokyo Galaxy because I was able to come in contact with many opportunities and gain a lot of experience.
Tell us your idea of the most notable features of Tokyo Galaxy.
Despite the fact that it has quite a large number of students, the teachers of Tokyo Galaxy pay attention to each and every one of us, and the atmosphere of the class is very good. Its environment is well-developed; we can keep focus on studying at this school.
Please give some advice to those who are thinking of studying abroad and going on to a vocational school in Japan.
I came to Japan with almost no knowledge of Japanese, only a little bit of hiragana, but I think it’s definitely better to study basic grammar and conversation before coming to Japan. When I first arrived in Tokyo, I had a lot of trouble because I was barely able to read and speak Japanese. I recommend that you study in advance to a certain extent.
We know that your life in Japan as an international student has changed unexpectedly due to the impact of COVID-19. How did you overcome its influence?
School classes were switched to remote learning, and all of my part-time job sites were closed, so I spent more time at home. Since I had a lot of unoccupied time, I spent a lot of time focusing on self-development in order to make good use of it. I had to cut down on my activities because of COVID-19, but I tried to look at the positive side of it and think that this coronavirus thing gave me time to focus on myself.
What are your goals for studying at Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry?
I’ve always dreamed of working in a foreign country, so I’m going to work harder than anyone else when I start studying in Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry.
I would like to work for a Japanese company after acquiring the technical knowledge and skills related to jewelry, so I also will keep up with studying Japanese.
Ms. Koh, with great communication skills, has always been participating actively in classes. We are happy to see her taking steps towards her dream career.
We hope that she will gain knowledge and skills at Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry and become a first-class jewelry designer in the future.