What do graduates from our programs say about their experience at UBC?
Bomool Chung, Rits 23 AEP student
“The multi cultural society, which is different from Japan, makes this country more colorful. Surrounded by this nice environment, I learned and experienced a lot while making many international friends, joining Tandem language exchange, belonging to ASIA club, travelling with my friends, volunteering in Japanese classes, and the list goes on and on. As I look back at my life in Vancouver now, all my experiences are pleasant memories, but at first, because it was the very first time for me to live independently from my family and to study abroad for such a long time, life in Vancouver was not easy. Everything
new—new place, different language and even cooking was a challenge for me. However, I overcame these difficulties due to the support of many people”.
Hakuko Sha (Hiro) , Rits 23 GCP student
“During the term, I took some elective courses, and one of them was a sociology class called Canadian social structure. Through the knowledge gained in this course, I came to understand and consider deeply about important social problems surrounding Canadian society. I was especially shocked by the serious issue of poverty in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. In this area, there are around 700 homeless people, and about 70 percent of residents are living with low income. This reality has made me want to contribute to finding solutions to issues of poverty. And in term 2, I luckily gained an opportunity to join food preparation and conversation group programs at two community organizations in Downtown
Eastside. Although it was only for a limited period of time, I hope that I contributed to make the area a better place to live. That was a meaningful experience in the sense that I could connect learning in the classroom with positive contributions in the real world.”
Alice, Rits 25 GCP student
The GCP program provided me a precious opportunity to do the Community Service Learning placement at South Vancouver Neighborhood House (SVNH). Through a period of participation with the multicultural Women’s Peer Mentoring Program at SVNH, in-class discussions, and writing about the progress reports, I strongly feel that reflection is a profound bridge between the learning experience and theory, which allows us to work through the complexities of global citizenship. My experience properly proves Byers’ (2015) idea that it is the combination of values in the local community of our birth and the broader community of human argument and aspiration together within an individual that constitutes global citizenship. Moreover, as a cultural experience, it not only adds new information to my knowledge but rather sublimates my thought and broadens my overview. Through the contact with ladies from all ages with multiple cultural backgrounds, I have understood more about cultural barriers, and the improvement of my communication skills and people skills help me to know more about how to express and overcome them.