Psychological Science Major Tara Hoverstad Studies in Japan

Posted on March 26th, 2015 by

Tara Hoverstad '16 (front) with friend in Japan

Tara Hoverstad ’16 (front) with friend in Japan

In fall of 2014, otherwise known as my junior year, I decided to take a huge leap out of my perfectly comfortable world here at Gustavus and study abroad in Tokyo. This may be the most scary, wonderful, exciting thing I will ever do in my life, and I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything in the world. It all started fall of my sophomore year, when I decided it would be a good idea to take Japanese as my language credit… little did I know that this would end up being the most challenging course I had ever taken. However, like many Gusties, I like a challenge and embraced it for the most part, but was very excited to be done with the class so I could focus on classes for my major, Psychological Science. Then in my second semester of Japanese, my professor told the class about a new opportunity to study abroad in Japan that had just developed. I had been thinking about studying abroad since before I was even in college, but kind of gave up on the idea until then. I told my parents about the opportunity, and talked to the international office about it, and soon enough I was accepted into the program as the first Gustie to come to Hosei University in Tokyo, Japan.

The amazing food in Japan!

The amazing food in Japan!

Fast forwarding a couple of months, I was at Hosei University having the time of my life having amazing, new experiences every day and meeting people who would end up being friends I will be sure to keep in touch with for a long time ahead. There is so much that I love about Japan and Tokyo, and so many reasons to go back. Some of my favorite things about the trip were the sushi (OF COURSE!), and food in general, shopping, karaoke nights, girl’s nights in the dorm, Disneyland, and onsens (hot-springs). This is just a small list of the fun stuff I experienced in Japan, others include riding a bullet train, petting deer, seeing Mt. Fuji (Fuji-san), and much more.

Unlike some of my friends, I did not go to Japan in search for some kind of definition of my self. I did, however, learn so much about myself. I now know that traveling and being “worldly” is extremely important to me, and I hope to travel at least to every continent.



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