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Japanese showcase provides students with exciting internship opportunities

27 May 2016

Japanese Programme Fair

This May our Japanese department held a Programme Fair co-hosted with the Wales Japan Club to showcase Japanese and the opportunities that learning the language can bring our students.

The Programme Fair has taken place for a number of years and includes a speech competition which sees the winner awarded with a highly sought after internship at a Japanese company.

This year the event, which attracted over 40 guests, began with a talk by former students and winners of the speech competition, Christopher Tomlinson and Kalina Konova. Christopher and Kalina both studied Japanese and Business at Cardiff and went on to internships at Panasonic Manufacturing UK and Sony UK Tec respectively, where they both still work.

Following Christopher and Kalina’s talks, the speech competition took place entirely in Japanese, illustrating the high level language proficiency of the students involved.

The topics discussed during the contest were very wide ranging and thought-provoking. One student chose to talk about his home town while others presented on social issues, Japanese society and culture which made the contest highly competitive.

Masaru Takahashi, chair of the Wales Japan Club named Oliver Thwaite (final year) and Alexandra Hillman (second year) as the winners of the competition with their speeches “How to motivate your employees” and “Childhood Obesity”. Oliver and Alexandra will now join Sony UK Tec’s work placement scheme; an excellent opportunity to gain experience in a Japanese-speaking work environment.

Runners up were awarded prizes from JP Books and Sony products.

Winner Alexandra said, “I was apprehensive about taking part in the speech contest but I'm very glad I did even though it was quite nerve-wracking! I was offered work experience by Sony as a result, which is a fantastic opportunity which usually would not be easy to come by. The experience of taking part was very rewarding, not just because of the work experience, but for my own confidence as well."

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