Japan trip open to MC students

Maryville College students interested in Japan will have an opportunity to visit the
country during spring break from March 13-23, 2014 as part of a faculty-led study
abroad trip.

Dr. Asami Segi, adjunct professor of Japanese, and Dr. Kathie Shiba, professor of
psychology, will accompany students to Japan for the 10-day trip. The visit was created
as an optional one-credit supplement to the JPN 349 and PSY 224 courses. However,
all MC students will have the opportunity to submit an application for the trip.

According to the MC website, the goals of the trip include allowing students to gain
appreciation for Japanese culture, to explore cultural connections between America
and Japan and to gain skill in communication in a country with a primary language other
than English.

The trip will include trips to colleges, museums, historical sites, temples and castles.
Students will experience travel on the Japanese railway system.
Segi said the trip’s itinerary and focuses will be partly determined by the interests of
participating students.

“Anything students might be interested in–we’ll go with that,” Segi said.
Planning the logistics of the trip will be part of the requirements for JPN 349, a
course that is part of MC’s minor in Japanese. Students in JPN 349 will be required to
coordinate the visit to Japan by assisting with making reservations and arrangements
while practicing Japanese.

These students will also be leading the trip by using their
Japanese skills to translate for students who do not know the language.
Junior biochemistry major Katie Spears hopes to participate in JPN 349 and visit
Japan.

“I would love to see my family members that are in Japan,” Spears said. “I also hope
to experience the people and culture of the country.”
Junior neuroscience major Kacey Whitteaker also plans to attend.
“I’m glad to have the opportunity to visit a new culture that I didn’t know if I would
ever see,” Whitteaker said.

Both Spears and Whitteaker have taken Japanese courses at MC, but hope that
students who have not studied the language will be a part of the trip, as well.
Participants may be spending time with native Japanese host families and will have
the option of experiencing traditional cuisine.

Spears is excited about the opportunity to have sushi and sashimi in Japan.
“I’m very excited about the traditional food,” Spears said.
The approximate cost for the trip is $3,800, which includes transportation, housing,
group trips, travel insurance, the deposit and application fees. Students will be
responsible for meals and passport costs outside of the trip cost.

For financial assistance, students may apply for the need-based Traavel Award
scholarship, which could cover up to 50 percent of trip costs. Applications for the
Traavel Award are available on the MC website.
Segi said the cost of the trip was a good value for students.

“That’s a really low price for what we are going to do,” said Segi.

The application for the trip, along with an application fee of $100, is due Mar. 1,
2013. A $200 deposit for accepted applicants is due April 15, 2012.

Detailed information about the goals of the Japan trip and contact information can
be found at www.maryvillecollege.edu/international/studyabroad/jterm/japan2014/.

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