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Study Abroad - From the world to WASEDA -

From Bolivia to Waseda

Mr. Elroy Gonzales
Ms. Karla Taboada
2nd year students in the Doctoral Program of the Graduate School of Information Production and Systems

Elroy and Carla are a husband and wife who were both born in Bolivia. After graduating from university, they worked in Bolivia as system engineers at IBM and other major corporations. "However, at the same time, we were considering foreign study in order to further heighten the specialized fields of our work," say the couple. "Japan is known throughout the world as a leader in technological growth, so we have always had a strong desire to study abroad in Japan."

"Fortunately, in 2005, Carla gained the opportunity to visit Japan for a short period as part of the Engineer Invitation Project of the JICA." At this time, Elroy and Carla learned of the existence of Waseda University's Graduate School of Information, Production and Systems (IPS). Once Carla returned to Bolivia, the couple decided to enter the Master's Program of IPS. "We felt that studying at IPS would allow us to improve each other. Not only would we have the opportunity to find rewarding work after finishing the program, but it would also be a valuable experience for our lives in the future."

In September 2005, the couple entered the Information Architecture Graduate School of IPS, and they both successfully graduated in 2007. Currently, they are continuing their research as 2nd year students in the Doctoral Program. "Our research theme is data mining. In the future, data mining is expected to play an integral role in industries such as manufacturing, service, finance and pharmaceuticals. In particular, we want to contribute to the development of methods for decision-making in the dealing market, which involves the exchange of an enormous amount of information." The results of their research also possess great value for ordinary companies, and Elroy and Carla are working to contribute to both Japan and Bolivia in the future.

"We are perfectly happy with our research and our lifestyle in Kitakyushu. Our time is spent in a fulfilling environment with extensive facilities and many friends. Our son Nicholas, who came to Japan with us when he was 18 months old, is now 5 years old and speaks fluent Spanish and Japanese." Elroy and Carla speak happily about their son's great interest in robots. "This March, a picture drawn by our son won a prize as part of a contest, and he received an award from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. We are very proud of him."

Elroy and Carla now share a common dream. "In the future, we dream of helping disadvantaged children in Bolivia. We especially want to give opportunities for education and improving vocational ability to children who live in the suburbs and rural areas. To achieve this goal, we want to someday establish a center that will provide children with sufficient education, housing and nutrition. In the future, we hope that a day will come when we are involved in a child support project held through cooperation between Japan and Bolivia." Let's offer hope and support for Elroy and Carla's dream!

(Offered by WASEDA WEEKLY)