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Top>Hakumon CHUO [2012 Early Spring Issue]>[The spring of a lively bunch] Seminar activities and research are a source of self-confidence Rounding off a fulfilling four years since starting university

Hakumon CHUOIndex

The spring of a lively bunch

Seminar activities and research are a source of self-confidence
Rounding off a fulfilling four years since starting university

Sahori Yaguchi
Faculty of Policy Studies (Kaetsu Girls' High School graduate)

Sahori Yaguchi

"The thing that struck me about the Faculty of Policy Studies was the opportunity to study a diverse range of subjects in small groups." Sahori Yaguchi had a clear goal from the day she entered university: "I'm not just going to 'be' at university for four years."

With this positive approach, Sahori got actively involved in seminar activities starting from April in her second year. She threw everything into Professor Sukehiro Hosono's public policy issues seminar, which is said to be one of the toughest seminars in the Faculty of Policy Studies. It involves analysing urban planning and the seminar included a variety of projects, such as planning, extra-curricular activities and essay writing. These exercises are interrelated and the core activity required leaving the classroom to get involved in actual town planning. Seminar participants also helped out with events in Chuo University's neighbouring town, where they hosted workshops to talk with people about problems with the shopping street. The issues raised in the workshop included those which had been studied beforehand, as well completely new issues that students got to know about first-hand by listening to what local people had to say.

Looking back, Sahori remembers that when "helping with events and coming into contact with people in the shopping street, not everyone was kind to the students to begin with." But after going there many times, "they gradually started to open up to us, which made me happy." In terms of results and lessons learned from the seminar activities, Sahori stresses that "getting to know things you couldn't by being at university alone, and learning through contact with people in a society you usually aren't involved in, was huge."

Entering her third year, activities became more demanding and essay writing also started. Every day was so busy that there wasn't a day during the week when the seminar didn't take place. At the Public Policy Student Forum held in Gifu Prefecture in October, Sahori represented the Hosono Seminar and presented a research paper, finishing as an impressive runner-up.

"My seminar colleagues and essay writing taught me the difficulties and importance of working as a team to accomplish something. And I am also extremely grateful to Professor Hosono who told us, 'I'm not going to demand that you succeed,' and gave us various chances even if we failed."

The experience of seriously focusing on just thing during university gave Sahori lot of self-confidence. Already by May of her fourth year, her job-hunting bore fruit and she received a job offer at a financial institution. "In order not to regret your university life and job-hunting activities, it is important to gather more information than others by going out as much as possible using a little footwork. I will treasure the seminar that taught me this for life." When saying this, Sahori's expression overflows with satisfaction from her time spent at university that she got so much out of.