For my inaugural post, I’d like to talk a little bit about what I plan to be doing in Japan so that it’s easier for people to follow my posts throughout the year. But first a disclaimer: I have not left for Japan yet – I will be leaving mid-September for a 3-4 day Fulbright orientation trip in Tokyo and coming back to the States by roughly mid-July (2014).
My grant allows me to pursue a research project in affiliation with an academic institution and an assigned adviser at that institution. I have uploaded English and Japanese language versions of my original grant proposal if anyone is interested in getting more details. Unlike other Fulbright research grants, I was not supposed to contact faculty members at possible host institutions before I received the award – Japan-U.S. Educational Commission (JUSEC) makes these arrangements on my behalf. I wrote this proposal almost a full year ago now, so a few details about the aims and logistics of my project are subject to change. Another main component of my time in Japan will be continued language study through coursework. I am convinced one can never really attain ‘fluency’ in Japanese and that improvement is always possible.
Just this morning I received official notice of my admission to Kyoto University as a visiting research student (研究生) beginning in the upcoming Fall academic term! As a research student I’ll be able to audit some courses and work with faculty in the Graduate School of Economics (大学院経済学部研究科). I am really excited about my placement at Kyoto, as it was my top choice for my research and as a place to live. I’ll give some more background on Kyoto in a later post.