A Summer Abroad: CCT First-Year, Daiyang Zhang, Ventures to Japan for the Princeton in Ishikawa Program

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CCTer Daiyang Zhang selected for the Princeton in Ishikawa Program

First-year CCT student Daiyang Zhang has been selected to participate in an intensive 2-month summer program in Japan through Princeton University. Combining her desire to fully immerse herself in the Japanese language, along with her interest in learning more about Japanese culture, Daiyang will embark on a trip of a lifetime. Read on to learn more about the program, Daiyang, and her CCT focuses. 

What is the scholarship and how did you hear about it?

The Princeton in Ishikawa (PII) Program is an intensive Japanese summer school provided by Princeton University. The Program lasts for 2 months in Kanazawa, Ishikawa prefecture. Students can homestay in local families and don’t need to pay for their living costs.

In eight weeks, the Princeton in Ishikawa (PII) program covers the curricular equivalent of one academic year of Japanese language study at Princeton University. It is a high-quality intensive program taught by qualified instructors with vast experience. The program is team-taught by faculty members from American universities and several Japanese teachers from Kanazawa. I heard about it from my CCT classmate, Fanglin Wang, who is also taking Japanese classes here in Georgetown. She learned about it from her Japanese instructor. 

How did CCT help you in finding out why you wanted to apply for the scholarship? 

CCT’s Director of Academic Programs, Sarah Twose, helped me a lot in my pursuit of learning Japanese. I applied for the language scholarship in my first semester, and in the process Sarah helped me a lot in giving advice and assisting with my application. For this application to the Princeton in Ishikawa Program, Sarah was kind enough to write a recommendation letter for me, which I believe was one of the reasons that I got submitted. 

What will you be working on over the summer with the scholarship?

PII is a very intensive language learning program. We will be meeting each other three hours every morning, five days a week, and there will be tests almost every day. We will visit some government offices and national parks, and experience traditional festivals. My main task in Ishikawa is learning Japanese and finishing the program certificate successfully. 

What do you hope to learn from this experience?

I hope to understand more about the Japanese culture and its language. I want to finish Level 2 Japanese in this program, and particularly develop my speaking skills. I am also looking forward to the homestay because I think it might be a very interesting and immersive experience with local people, and I can understand Japanese culture more, especially how they see China and the United States. 

How will this help you in what you want to do with your future career?

My focus in CCT is the cultural proximity and knowledge flows in East Asia. I am particularly interested in the TV shows and motion pictures imports and exports in the region. Therefore, obtaining the skill to speak another language is of great importance. Japanese can be used as a tool to further my study in my field of interest, and can later provide me with opportunities to even study or work in Japan.