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Graduate Student Testimonials| APU Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University Graduate School Admissions

GSA Student Testimonials

Student testimonials

Over the years, our alumni have put to use the skills they gained at APU and continue to shape the world in a variety of different ways. Here are a few testimonials of APU’s graduate students.

Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies (Master's)

ASIA PACIFIC STUDIES (APS)

International Relations (IR)

  • Dinar Swastiningtyas Theosa (Indonesia)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       Asia Pacific Studies (APS)
       International Relations







    APU’s GSA program provided me with outstanding experiences both inside and outside of the classroom. Not only did courses in the International Relations (IR) division challenge me to think in-depth and analytically about current international affairs, the multicultural environment allowed me to do so with a worldwide network of friends and classmates whose different perspectives were precious learning resources during classroom discussions. Additionally, the ample opportunities for research funding and assistance have gave me the invaluable experience of presenting my research at reputable international conferences around the world. I was constantly enriched by the academic setting at APU, whose embrace of global values inspired me to approach both my research — and my personal life — from multiple perspectives. I feel that the master`s program there not only helped to shape me into who and what I want to be, but also prepared me thoroughly for my next journey.

Society and Culture (SC)

  • Nhu Ngoc Nguyen (Viet Nam)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       Asia Pacific Studies (APS)
       Society and Culture







    Every choice we make is a step on the path of self-discovery. Whether or not to pursue a degree in higher education, when and where to do so, and under whose guidance - these are choices that, when made wisely, can enable self-betterment and shape future visions in one’s chosen profession. The choice to join the Society and Culture division at APU’s Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies not only gave me the chance to pursue my master’s degree, but also acquainted me with the right people who supported me unfailingly and helped recognize my passions, strengths, and weaknesses. While professional consultation was always available when needed, I appreciated that in our division we were encouraged to explore and develop our research freely and independently. The program duration of two years was indeed short, but filled with rewarding experiences, valuable lessons, and cherished memories with professors and friends. It was a choice that I'm proud of making, for it has made me a better person - rich in knowledge and gratitude.


INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION POLICY (ICP)

International Public Administration (IPA)

  • Swe Sett (Myanmar)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       International Public Administration







    I’ll never forget my life at APU, which was full of exciting academic challenges and deep satisfaction with the unique multicultural environment. During my time as a student in the master’s program for International Cooperation Policy, I was able to create strong bonds with friends and colleagues all over the world — a personal network of accomplished professionals that I am still a part of today. After graduating under the expert guidance of my professors, I accomplished my dream of rejoining the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in my home country as a diplomat. I am now serving as First Secretary in Myanmar’s embassy in Washington DC, USA. The real-world experience, knowledge, and awareness of international issues that I obtained through my studies at APU are invaluable to me as they have proven to be essential tools in my career in international diplomatic relations. I am very grateful for and will always remember my dear professors and classmates at APU.

Public Health Management (PHM)

  • Sisca Wiguno (Indonesia)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       Public Health Management







    Thanks to the nature of my work in the humanitarian field, I am exposed to a variety of cultures from many different countries on a regular basis. But at no other point in my life, however, have I encountered such sheer diversity and inclusiveness as I did in the APU community. My interactions with colleagues and professors from all over the world in APU’s friendly and progressive learning environment sharpened my knowledge of global affairs and increased my understanding of public-health related issues. As there is currently a shift in the focus of public health intervention toward middle-income populations and developed countries due to challenges such as non-communicable diseases and the decline of healthy cities, the knowledge of and exposure to these realities gained through my research in the Public Health Management program at APU have been indispensable in advancing my career. After graduation, I had the chance to work for Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) as a medical coordinator in Iran and as a deputy medical coordinator in Pakistan. Now, I have the honor of working with UNICEF as a health officer for malaria and EPI interventions.

Sustainability Science (SS)

  • Malili Nair (Fiji)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       Sustainability Science







    My time at APU was one of the most significant milestones in my career. Its culture and its location proved to be a boon to me both professionally and academically. I was able to get to know professors and peers from various backgrounds and with different expertise while taking in APU’s beautiful natural surroundings, with the added benefit of being assisted in my daily life by APU’s engaging staff. I will never forget the relaxed and secluded learning environment of APU, with its globally connected and yet accessible social setting. The diversity of students, faculty and staff at APU was a resource that allowed me to grow as a person, to see myself contrarily, and to be self-governing in my academic and social life. My experiences at APU have allowed me to strengthen the relationship between Fiji and Japan, and I hope one day to raise the educational standards of the Asia Pacific region in general. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to be a part of APU.

  • Ariane Albers (Germany)
    Jun Hu (David)

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       IMAT Program







    The two-year IMAT graduate program broadened my horizons, reaching beyond the conventional boundaries of discipline, culture and business. IMAT provides a unique theoretical and practical setting within small-sized classes, enriched by valuable debates and input on sustainability issues and challenges. This included looking at issues such as management practices and policy aspects of waste and wastewater management, energy efficiency, renewable energy and technology from different perspectives. Thus we were encouraged to develop critical and holistic thinking skills as well as problem-solving capabilities tailored to specific projects or situations. From this study, I learned to view things differently and to see potentials and opportunities in every challenge to move towards more sustainable development. Also, I appreciated the international and multicultural integration of the program offered both in Japan and Germany. I personally valued meeting people from different parts of the world which boosted my intercultural competence and open-mindedness to succeed in today’s global community.

Tourism and Hospitality (TH)

  • Pimlada Bunthornwan (Thailand)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       Tourism and Hospitality







    Studying tourism as a master’s student at APU has given me a greater understanding of the current state of international tourism — and what potential it holds — through an emphasis on the connection between local and global stakeholders. My astute and resourceful professors take advantage of APU’s location in Beppu, as it is one of the most well-known tourist destinations in all of Japan, by drawing upon on the robust local tourist industry for their course material. We as students are encouraged to draw from such sources, but also expand our sights to incorporate global dimensions in our research; this is in turn facilitated by the range and depth of specializations and expertise of our professors. Another layer in APU’s education exists thanks to the global student body, as I have daily opportunities to discuss various topics and issues with classmates from different countries from all over the world. This has enabled me to view my own studies through countless perspectives and to truly appreciate the unity that results from diversity, both on campus and in the tourism industry itself. I am very thankful for being a part of this strong and multicultural community at APU.

  • Ri Sil Park (South Korea)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       Tourism and Hospitality







    Studying at APU significantly impacted my life. Under the division of Tourism and Hospitality in International Cooperation Policy, I studied and researched destination development and tourism policy. Through this, I learned the importance of policies and how to apply the ideas of tourism into destination and regional development. Furthermore, the environment at APU taught me how to shape my own world in a multicultural society by interacting with people from various countries. As a result of active participation in several school activities, I realized that mutual understanding can only happen when we accept the differences of each other and seek ways to work and live together. I believe APU is the perfect place where you can experience a real global society!

Development Economics (DE)

  • Mirna G. De La Portilla F. (Mexico)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       Development Economics







    Studying my Master’s degree at APU was a life changing experience. While at APU I had the opportunity to meet, and more importantly work with, people from many different countries. The worldviews of the people I met made me revalue and expand my own range of thought. After graduating from APU, I began working as a coordinator in the Secretariat of Human Development of my local government. I organized and implemented Social Programs and workshops such as: FORTAMUN 2015 - Gender Equality, which consisted of workshops, citizen forums, and awareness campaigns, impacting around 4,500 woman in the City of Altamira. The knowledge and experience I gained from interacting with many different people while at APU allowed me to work more effectively within my local government. The knowledge and social capital I was able to build within APU, along with the opportunities I was given to experience the intricacies of enriching cultures with unique people from all parts of the world, is something that I will forever be grateful to APU and Beppu for.

  • Felix Besseah (Ghana)
    Morse Caoagas Flores

       Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies
       International Cooperation Policy (ICP)
       Development Economics







    As an APU student, I found that the genuinely international and multicultural environment that the university offered greatly influenced students’ intercultural communication abilities and contributed immensely to our personal development and leadership potential. This type of interactive relationship also existed between students and faculty in the Development Economics division, which resulted in a positive rapport that contributed to the development of students’ research topics as well as created a strong sense of community. My APU experience helped to increase my research capabilities and apprised me of beyond-the-classroom opportunities such as international mentorship programs. These skills I obtained were even further enhanced by serving as both a teaching assistant and a research assistant. Even as a master’s student, I was eligible and encouraged to present my own research at international conferences, which proved an invaluable means towards improving my research methods. Should you choose to study at APU, you can be confident that the program will draw out your leadership abilities and help you stand out as a global leader wherever your career path leads you.

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