Home country: China
Graduate School of Media and Governance
Fudan University-Keio University Double Degree Program (Master's program)
Zhiwen Zhang is a participant of the double degree program with Fudan University, China, launched in 2005 with the Graduate School of Media and Governance, at Keio's Shonan Fujisawa Campus (SFC). The program allows participants to receive a master's degree from Keio in Media and Governance and a Master of Law in International Relations and Public Affairs from Fudan University. Passionate about his research on Sino-Japanese relations, Zhiwen enjoys making the most of the research resources available at Keio. Each campus has its own Media Center, each with a different specialization, and together the media centers house a massive collection of around 4.6 million books and journals.
How did you find out about your current program and what made you decide to pursue it?
I got the information about this double degree program from Fudan University, my home university. I chose it because my research domain is Sino-Japanese relations and because of the good support system offered by Keio University.
What do you enjoy about life at Keio?
I enjoy studying with my advisor, Professor Yorizumi Watanabe, because he is very kind and warm-hearted to me and supportive academically. For instance he introduced some of his acquaintances who can help me with my research, such as by helping me to locate research materials. I also like Keio University Media Center very much because it is very convenient for students and because the librarians are very kind.
Please tell us about a challenge that you have faced since coming to Keio and how you overcame it.
Language; my Japanese was poor before I came to Keio, so at first I could not communicate with others outside of campus. However, after learning elementary Japanese for one semester, my Japanese is gradually getting better.
How have you changed as a result of coming to Keio and to Japan, and how have your views of Japan changed?
I think that Keio treats its students fairly. My impression of Japan has changed in that I now realize that Japanese people are much more friendly and kindhearted than I imagined.
What are your plans after you finish your studies at Keio? What do you think you will take with you from this experience?
I will look for a job in my field. I think the language skills and research and teamwork methodology that I have learnt at Keio will be useful for my future career.
How would you recommend Keio to students in your home country?
I will recommend my friends in Fudan to apply for this program and will also introduce this famous and long historical university to my Chinese friends.
Please give a brief piece of advice for prospective international students at Keio.
Work on your language skills and communicate with Japanese friends. Take advantage of the valuable information resources available at Keio. Good luck to everyone!
(This interview is from December 2012.)