Tags: Issue 4, June 2021
During these unprecedented times, non-essential travel has been mostly put on hold across countries and industries. This has had a major impact on student mobility at colleges and universities across the world. But, with Internationalization as a priority at Humber, there have been some exciting developments over the past year, that have offered students new ways of experiencing study exchanges during these times – through virtual mobility.
In Winter 2021, 13 students across the Faculty of Social and Community Services registered for courses at Kansai Gaidai University (KGU), in Japan. These elective courses were taken online, with other students from across the globe, through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous lessons. Course topics included Globalization, Culture and Identity in East Asia, Asia in World History to 1500, Monsters, Ghosts and the Making of Modern Japan, and Shinto, amongst several others.
"I have always been interested in Japanese culture as I find it so unique. That’s why, as soon as I saw the opportunity to take a course at KGU, I jumped on it immediately. The class that I was in was a class that I had only dreamed about ever taking – Cultural and Creative Industries in Japan/East Asia. After registering, I was introduced to being an event leader and had the opportunity to organize events as part of an Intercultural Exchange Program for international and local KGU students virtually during the semester. It was an additional experience on top of the course that helped me become more involved, engaged and meet others during my time at KGU. This experience has been nothing less than exceptional."
"Taking a KGU has been the highlight of my semester. It has been a very busy semester however, strangely enough, the course that I was taking through KGU (Globalization and Identity in East Asia) had been a sort of a stress-relief. It felt like I had been taken into another realm of learning, with content close to home, as I am Southeast Asian and grew up in the Middle East.
If I were to remember only one thing from this experience, it would be our discussions we had in the class, on the stories that have made us into the people that we are today"
"I decided to sign up for KGU because it took me out of my comfort zone, and I was itching for new experience. When I saw the opportunity, I decided to go for it. What I enjoyed the most about the program is how it offers electives which are different from course topics that I would usually get to take. I also enjoyed virtually interacting with my classmates, who were all from different countries, in different time zones, but in the same class at the same time. This positive experience has made me decide to take another course abroad virtually in the future. I even signed up to take another course virtually at KGU this summer for CCR, because I enjoyed this experience so much!"