From forks to chopsticks

COURTESY HAKUOH UNIVERSITY

Hakuoh University bell ringers will present a free concert Feb. 17 at 7 p.m. on campus.

COURTESY FREEMAN SCHOLARS

Freeman scholars Michael Dryzomkowoski (far left), Marissa Del Rey (front right) and Jason Kang (not pictured) explore one of Japan’s gardens.

If you have ever wanted to fly off somewhere and experience a whole new culture, now is your chance to do so. There are at least five scholarships for which you can apply before March 2, 2015.

The Hakuoh University International Study Tour is a nine-day stay in Oyama City, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan during June. Students in the university’s celebrated Handbell Choir will present a free concert in WCC’s Paliku Theatre Tuesday, Feb. 17 at 7 p.m.

Monbugakusho Scholarship is a three-year paid program from April 2016 to March 2019. You will spend one year learning Japanese and the next two years studying your chosen field.

In the Aichi University Exchange Program, you pay your home campus tuition and can attend Aichi University for free. You can spend either a year there or one semester. You do not need to have completed Japanese 201 to apply for this scholarship, although you should have completed Japanese 101 and 102.

The Honda Study Abroad Scholarship is awarded to five community college students to anywhere overseas. You must have a GPA of 3.5 or higher to apply.

The Freeman Scholarship is totally free and given to 10 community college students each year.

Those selected spend one semester at KCC studying the language and the next semester abroad in the designated country. This is one of the few scholarships that wants students who do not speak the language.

Last year four out of the 10 recipients were from WCC. “This was a great success,” said geography professor and international education coordinator Toshi Ikagawa.

You can find the applications on the University of Hawaii Community Colleges website at http://uhcc.hawaii.edu/studyabroad/. The deadline to apply is March 2, 2015.

“You are still young (with) not much responsibility, and someone is paying for you. You should take this chance!” said Ikagawa.

So, give it your best shot. Fill out the applications because you will never know until you try. “It’s life- changing,” said Ikagawa, because you might fall in love with the country you visit.

Ikagawa himself left Japan to study outside his home country and has lived in the United States ever since.

by Tiffany Hayler, Ka ‘Ohana Staff Reporter