Three Eastern Michigan University students head to Japan with international scholarship

by Cherese Colston, Published June 08, 2012

Eastern Michigan University students Jessica Bryne, Elyzabeth Lynn and Olivia Ward have all been awarded the Japan Business Society of Detroit (JBSD) Foundation Scholarship.

The scholarship will allow the students to study at the Japan Center for Michigan Universities (JCMU) in Hikone, Shiga Prefecture, during the 2012-13 academic year. The three students will join 10 other EMU students studying at JCMU this fall. 

For Elyzabeth Lynn, an international business major, the news couldn't have come at a better time. After finishing a particularly rough semester juggling six classes and two jobs, Lynn said being accepted to the JCMU was the extra little push she needed to keep working hard.

"The challenge for me became trying to afford the program," said Lynn. "So receiving the award was exciting and a big relief."

The awardees were chosen for their focus on Japanese language and career interest in cultivating business connections between Japan and Michigan in their post-graduate profession.

After moving from Arizona to Michigan, Jessica Bryne was amazed to learn of the strong relationship between Michigan and Japan. 

"These ties not only build stronger cultural ties, but many business relationships that will only benefit Japan and Michigan," said Bryne, a Japanese language and culture major.

Through the JBSD Foundation scholarship, students like Bryne, Lynn and Ward can be a part of a unique cultural experience.

Said Lynn: "As a student I'm honored to have a hand in helping this existing connection and to be a part of building new ones.

"I won't just be representing Eastern Michigan University, Michigan or even the Midwest, but my nation."    

The students will be leaving in August for eight months. While at the Center, the students will take intensive Japanese language courses in addition to outside cultural electives. The JCMU also offers opportunities such as trips, community involvement and internships. According to the scholarship recipients, not many college students have this type of opportunity.  

"Thanks to the generosity of organizations like the JBSD Foundation, it allows more people to have the amazing experience of going abroad," said Bryne.

JBSD Executive Director, Mr. Shosaku Ueda, recognized the fall and academic year scholarship recipients at a ceremony and luncheon in Novi on June 1.

The Japan Business Society of Detroit awards scholarships for study in Japan and provides financial support to community organizations in the areas of education and research. JBSD allocates six scholarships for JCMU students each year: two for the fall semester, two for the spring semester and two for students participating in the full academic year.

Cherese Colston

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