Writer: Hania Humaira | Illustrator: Marsha Susanna | Editor: Maria Josephine & Edsel Pragiwaka
As an international student, who doesn't want to get a scholarship? This article unravels the journey of an Indonesian student who achieved an outstanding scholarship in Japan throughout his study.
Being an international student in Japan might sound challenging due to the language barrier, but it is not as scary as imagined. Let's hear a standpoint from an Indonesian student in Japan. Read along!
Meet Brian Hudiono Hieronimus or also known as Brian; he maximizes as much of his student life in Japan by applying for prestigious scholarships. He is an APS third-year and second-semester student pursuing a bachelor's degree in international relations and peace studies.
Brian Hudiono and His Scholarship Journey
Proficient in writing appealing scholarship essay applications, Brian received a JASSO Scholarship or Monbukagakusho Honors Scholarship for Privately-Financed International Students from his first semester until his fifth semester of study.
By obtaining a scholarship each semester, JASSO awarded him ¥49,000 each month which is very reliable for him to support his study in the land of the rising sun as an international student. To apply for JASSO Scholarship, Brian must write an essay containing four questions about his study, career plans, and future goals for each semester.
Getting a well-known scholarship in Japan, JASSO Scholarship, does not stop Brian from striving for more triumphs in receiving a scholarship to support his study in Japan. In his sixth semester, he was awarded an exceptional scholarship in Japan, Rotary Yoneyama Scholarship, after his long journey to apply and pass the challenging screening procedures. To finally obtain the scholarship, it took Brian roughly four months to complete all the application procedures and screening, which was very tough for him.
"Since I applied to this Rotary Yoneyama Scholarship as an APU student, I could not apply for other scholarships available for four months as APU already registered me for the Rotary Yoneyama Scholarship application. Not to mention that the procedures to apply for this prestige scholarship are tiring and challenging as it needs an advanced level of Japanese language skills to pass all the screening process."
Brian also noted, to receive a more prominent scholarship in Japan, high Japanese language proficiency is a must to open the door to success in acquiring the scholarship. Despite the challenging procedures and screening process, his hard work has been paid back by receiving the scholarship.
Rotary Yoneyama Scholarship granted the recipient of ¥100,000 for each month. However, the journey is not over as the recipient has to participate in activities conducted by the institution. Such as, give a motivational speech, provide a critical opinion for decision-making or case study, and participate in a meeting or conference conducted by Rotary Yoneyama Memorial Foundation.
Tips and Tricks to Win a Scholarship by Brian Hudiono
Write an Outstanding Essay Application
"For JASSO Scholarship, you must write an application essay regarding yourself, your dreams, plans, and career paths. My tips are to structure your essay well and convince them that you could utilize it to pursue your career with your strengths and abilities. Equally important, don't be scared of dreaming big! Beautifully visualize your plans and goals to achieve your dream to ensure the institutions on how committed you are to your life and future. Besides, for JASSO Scholarship, you can write it in English, so be sure to check and revise any grammatical mistakes on grammarly or other supporting applications to make solid and neat writings."
Train Your Japanese: Sustain Your Friendship with Japanese-speaking People
"APU, with its multicultural environment that combines the international students with the domestic students, offers you unlimited opportunities to make friends with people from various backgrounds and personalities. In my case, I am maintaining my friendship with my Multicultural Workshop (MCW) groupmates, who unexpectedly have a central role in helping me to receive the Rotary Yoneyama Scholarship. Hence, don't hesitate to ask for help and assistance from your Japanese friend with your schoolwork, writings, and scholarship applications. They are always willing to help you! In the same way, having a conversation using Japanese with your Japanese friends is very helpful to grow your Japanese language skills."
Balance Out Your Academic and Non-academic Activities
"From my personal experience, academic achievement or your GPA is significantly influential and vital to get a scholarship smoothly. A GPA between 3,7 to 3,8 is your best go to get a scholarship easily. However, you have to spice up your campus life with various non-academic activities or extracurricular activities by joining a circle to expand your connection and improve your soft skills. I joined several circles and organizational activities to enhance my experience at APU by working with various people from different countries. For example, Wadaiko Raku, We Are Aware!, SAS, Project C, and SALC."
Brian Hudiono's journey to accomplish a well-known scholarship in Japan concludes that nothing is impossible to pursue. It is on you how you want to work on your goal. Now, it is your chance to make the most of the opportunity offered by APU to brighten up your university life.