Twins make plans to attend universities in Japan

Elizabeth Duncan

Across the Pacific Ocean, seniors Yuka and Takumi Itozu will be attending college in Tokyo, Japan next year. The twins separately decided to attend two different schools in the same city in Japan.

Yuka will be attending the International Christian University (ICU) while Takumi will go to Waseda University.

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“I think I am looking most forward to being in a different country,” Yuka said. “In some ways, I will be able to ex

perience the same things as if I were to stay here. But, at the same time, I am able to experience a broader spectrum because I get to enhance my Japanese and also experience a new culture.”

Yuka and Takumi’s parents grew up and went to college in Japan. During the college application process, their parents’ influence caused them both to apply to schools in Japan, along with other schools in the United States. However, neither sibling thought they would end up attending a school in Japan.

Both siblings were accepted into both Japanese colleges, but based on their separate interests, they ended up at different schools.

Takumi knew he wanted to study international relations, while Yuka was still undecided on a major. According to Yuka, ICU is more of a liberal arts school with a smaller population, and will allow her to explore different fields of study the first two years before choosing a major.

ICU has a population about 3,000 undergraduates, whereas Waseda has approximately 44,000.

Waseda was appealing to Takumi for its strong international relations program.

“At first, [my parents] said, ‘you should just apply to [Waseda] to see how you will do,’” Takumi said. “Once I got in, they started pushing me a little more, saying if you are going to do international relations, it could be a good opportunity to pursue that.”

Takumi made his decision first, while Yuka had a tough time choosing between ICU and New York University.

Both twins said they are looking forward to learning more about their heritage, but are also glad that they will still get a traditional college experience. All the classes at both schools will be taught in English, and both schools have a substantial international population.

“I think it will be different, but my school is kind of Americanized, so I get to experience more of a typical American college life,” Yuka said.

Although both schools are located in Tokyo, they are very different. ICU has more of an isolated campus, while Waseda is more urban and located along a city street, according to Yuka.

“There are cats on my campus,” Yuka said. “So you know how in American schools, there are squirrels, at my school there’s cats. Typical household cats laying around. When we visited we saw about ten walking around campus.”

The Itozus have been to Japan multiple times because their extended family lives there, and they have seen both campuses.

“It’s weird because we have only been there in the summer and the winter so we haven’t really experienced anything but the freezing cold or the humidity, so it will be interesting to see what it’s like,” Yuka said.