Message from Ms. Kavita Sharma

Please give a short introduction about yourself.

My name is Kavita Sharma. I belong to New Delhi, India. I finished my Masters Course in Japanese language and literature in Chiba University and currently enrolled as a doctoral course student here.


What is your favorite thing about Chiba?

There are many things I like about Chiba. In terms of living expenses, Chiba is not as expensive as Tokyo is. Good transportation network, affordable housing, network of libraries, cultural events, hospitality of people, services at shops. I think I have listed the things which are generally common in Japan wherever one goes. It does not snow here much so not that cold, which I, being from a tropical country, love the most. Almost everything necessary for living is easily available here.
Besides, its nearness to Tokyo makes the things all the more comfortable. For example, I being a student in Chiba University, sometimes have to go to find research materials, which I can access at National Diet Library, many city libraries also. Many of the conferences are held in and around Tokyo, which one can take part in.


In what way has your impression of Chiba or Japan changed since coming here?

Before coming to Japan, some of my Japanese friends in India had told me that Chiba is an Inaka (suburb). So, I thought probably, there might be some transportation problem. But, it turned out to be just the opposite. I never faced any problem living in Chiba in terms of daily life activities.

What attracted you to choose Chiba University as a place to study?

First, the Professor from the same field of my research was there who very kindly had accepted my application and allowed me to pursue my research under his guidance. Chiba University’s library services, I admire the most. The environment in Chiba University is really conducive to learning. Students are provided lots of facilities to carry out their research activities hassle free. Not only in academic field but also with the other things such as when I entered into Chiba University. Being a foreign student not knowing about the things, the International Students Division helped me with the opening of post office account, provided lodging at cheapest rates in the university dormitory, provided opportunities to take part in cultural activities and get involved with them at a more personal level. Again, its nearness to Tokyo helps me to attend the conferences being held in and around Tokyo. Most important, I wanted to go for a national university, so I chose to study here.


In what way did you adjust yourself to Japanese culture?

For me, Japan is like a home away from home. Yes, living in a foreign country, requires to follow the rules and regulations of that society. So, certain regulations are required to be followed which ultimately makes life easy.
I learned about segregating garbage, standing on the left side of escalators making way for the others to pass through. And the only thing that I had to adjust was food. I being a vegetarian, mostly cook myself, instead of eating out.


Please give a message to students or researchers in your home country who may be thinking about studying in Japan?

In order to study in Japan, learning and gaining a certain level of proficiency in Japanese language will make things a lot easier.
Instead of being shy, come to Japan with an open mind. Make as many friends as possible here. Networking with people will enrich the learning experience. Follow the rules and customs of society. Trust me these rules are really helpful in day-to-day life.
Certain things may be expensive, so try to maintain a budget and follow it. Learning in Japan and exploring Japan both are pleasant experiences.