The Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies is composed of a group of fourteen primary member universities including Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, and Columbia; with Universities of Virginia and Michigan serving as associate members. This group of universities collaborates with Doshisha University in Kyoto to offer advanced Japanese language and culture courses. Each member institution has the right to nominate students to participate in the program. Participants are then selected as finalists by representatives from each member university. One to three students are nominated by UVA; all who have attended this program for a semester or a year have had nothing but good things to report on their return.
The program requires that those admitted have Japanese language training up through the 1020 level (for fall admission) or 2010 (for spring admission) at the time they begin studies in Japan and it builds on this strong base with intensive (six hours credit each semester) of language study. It supplements this with a choice of several classes on topics like Japanese literature, history, and politics in English and at least two classes a year in (easy) Japanese. Students with advanced language skills can enroll in classes at the Doshisha University in Japanese.
The KCJS curriculum provides intensive Japanese language study and the opportunity to choose from a broad spectrum of social sciences and humanities courses on pre-modern and contemporary Japan. The program takes advantage of the numerous social and cultural resources of Kyoto by incorporating into the curriculum field trips, guest speakers, and research projects based on local field work.
Students are encouraged to integrate into the local community by living with a Japanese family and through participation in a variety of extracurricular activities that provide a deeper understanding of Japanese culture.
The program is held next to the Doshisha campus, which allows intensive interaction with the academic and student communities at that elite institution. Students will be able to join student clubs and other activities, live in a homestay, and otherwise immerse themselves in the rich cultural stew of Kyoto.
This program charges the tuition rate of Columbia University and will offer Columbia University credits that will be accepted here as "transfer credit" toward participants' degree.
More information about the program and the application can be found online on the KCJS website and KCJS Facebook page. Information about the KCJS Scholarship and application can be found on the Finances section of their website.
Students must also complete the Columbia University application, and those that are nominated through UVA will be considered by a group of representatives from each partner institution.
Please contact UVA professor Gus Heldt if you have any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Students who attend KCJS
Most students who attend KCJS are undergraduate students from one of the fourteen consortium schools. A limited number of students from non-consortium schools and students who have recently graduated are admitted as well. Students are required to have at least one year of Japanese language training at the college level. Exceptions may be made on an individual basis.
Although the KCJS program focuses on the study of the Japanese language and Japanese studies, students who attend come from a variety of academic backgrounds including literature, political science, anthropology, engineering and science. Many students are able to find a way to fit the KCJS classes into their overall academic curriculum.
Many KCJS alumni return to Japan soon after graduation for study under the Fulbright, Monbusho and other grants, to work for Japanese and international firms, or take jobs in the JET program. Most KCJS graduates make Japan an important part of their long-term educational and career plans, with a number of alumni holding positions of responsibility in large international corporations. KCJS alumni are entering leadership positions in the fields of education, law, medicine, and engineering, and are actively involved with current students in promoting KCJS and its program.
- Must be a currently enrolled undergraduate student in good academic standing
- Must have completed at least one year of college-level Japanese for the fall semester, and three semesters for the spring semester, or the equivalent
- Minimum 3.0 average language GPA
- Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA