Program Description

Program Slogan: Egao to Tasseikan

Egao to Tasseikan

At the onset of the program, students write their long-term goal and short-term goal for their study of Japanese. During the eight weeks, they enjoy various activities such as homestay, independent study, Japanese language classes, and many more activities with an eye toward accomplishing the goals. Classmates, host family, instructors, and local people in Hakodate are always there to assist each student. When the program is over, they will be surprised at their progress as a Japanese language student as well as human being with a great big smile!

Three Useful Tools for Egao to Tasseikan:

  • NDR(日本語だけルール)
  • All participants observe the Nihongo-Dake (Japanese only) Rule from the moment they enter designated areas of the HIF building.

  • Self-Evaluation(自己評価)
  • Students reflect on themselves on a weekly basis, and set an individual goal for the following week. A classroom instructor keeps a log by writing a comment on the performance of each student every week on a report (笑顔と達成感レポート), so that students can conveniently look back on what they did.

  • Independent Study(IS)
  • IS is designed to promote autonomous and collaborative learning. Each student chooses a topic based on his/her short-term goal and long-term goal of the Japanese study, then designs and works on this eight-week project. Although the IS is not a group project, students work with their “support group” by helping and sharing their experiences and creativeness. Besides “support group”, students obtain great help and benefit from people in Hakodate when they develop their IS.
    See Independent Study for more information.

HIF Award

At the end of the program, one (maybe two) student from the entire program will be given this award at the closing ceremony. This award will be chosen based on the progress and contributions made during the program.

    Jason Alexander
    Colgate University / 2016 HIF Award Winner

  • Jason Alexander (left in the back row) with his host family

When I received the HIF award at the closing ceremony, I was shocked and moved by the choice. I had tried my best to engage with the community for the sake of learning and forging connections, and did not expect myself to end up in such a position since I had found many inspiring qualities to admire in the rest of the students. I’m glad that I was able to contribute even a little to people’s studies, which I will try to support as I graduate from university this year and move onto further research. Simultaneously applying for a research Fulbright in Japan and Japan-centric PhD programs in the United States, I am planning to investigate historical memory about foreigner identity in specific regions of Japan. I am also considering working at a research institution, foreign exchange center, or non-profit organization, shaping public history initiatives and advocating for cross-cultural education programs. These goals derive in no small part from the foundation that I was able to build at HIF this summer, where I learned in an enthusiastic and inclusive community.

(written on September 2016)

    Yuanxin Chen
    Princeton University / 2015 HIF Award Winner

  • Yuanxin Chen (right in the front row) with her roommate and host families

Receiving the 2015 HIF award was a great honor, blessing, and recognition from this lovely community.
It was both easy, and hard, to win this award. Easy, because what I did was nothing more than say: “yes.” “Yes” to the invitations from other students (most of whom are at least 6 years younger than me) to share their curiosity, joy, and excitement. Hard, because it took me a long time to see and fully understand the choices and efforts every single person of the community, including all the staff, instructors, students, host families, and citizens of Hakodate, had made to make the program possible, and wonderful.
2015 HIF ended a year ago, however the community remains. I chat with my HIF friends, and practice Japanese whenever there is a chance. My roommate and I exchange news in Japanese with our former host families. I've had reunions with HIF members in Tokyo, Kamakura, Beijing, Denver, Ann Arbor, Lancaster, Long Beach Island, Princeton, NYC, and Taipei, with more to come in Chicago and California.
What HIF gave me is not only fluency in Japanese, but the motivation to keep practicing; not only good memories of the past, but all the bonds that were formed and will continue.

(written on September 2016)

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Comments from Alumni

  • Name:
    Matthew Donley
    University:
    University of
    Michigan

    HIF is an outstanding program that offers not just instruction in the Japanese language, but it also serves as a gateway into Japanese culture...
    more

  • Name:
    Clarissa Krisnawan
    University:
    University of
    Washington

    There are various activities, you can enjoy at HIF. You can also discover the beauty of Hakodate City along with friends as well as your host family...
    more

  • Name:
    Alexander La Forest
    University:
    University of
    Notre Dame

    The HIF Japanese Language and Japanese Culture Program is worth every penny. Not only do you learn a lot in class, but also outside of...
    more

  • Name:
    Matthew Li
    University:
    Ursinus
    College

    I honestly can’t believe that it’s only been two months. Within this time, my Japanese isn’t the only thing that’s changed. Despite having plenty of experience...
    more

  • Name:
    Alex Prosi
    University:
    University of
    Michigan

    HIF truly excels in providing opportunities for its students wherever they need or want them. Through the program, I found myself...
    more

  • Name:
    Griffin Roth
    University:
    University of
    Chicago

    HIF was a lot of fun and very educational, from both a language and a cultural standpoint. If you’re interested in homestay...
    more

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