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Living & Learning: Japanese students overseas / U of T a diverse place for universal study

Courtesy of Yurie Kaku
Yurie Kaku on the university’s campus

By Yurie Kaku (University of Toronto) / Special to The Japan NewsThis column features reports by Japanese students studying overseas about their life on and off campus.

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Since I was small, I have dreamed of going to outer space. Thus, when I was in high school, my idea about what to do in university was simple and clear.

“I want to get closer to space. I want to study astronomy!”

The University of Toronto was my first choice. The department of astronomy, in which I will major from my second year, has partnerships with many institutions and projects all over the world, offering more opportunities for students to take an active role in astronomy than any other university in Canada. I believe I can learn everything I want to know about the universe at this university.

The University of Toronto is a big university with a large number of students, programs and areas of study. After finishing my first year this April, I thought that this was why something interesting was always going on in this campus. For example, I went to listen to a lecture given by a researcher from NASA, who was looking for life on other planets, and got to know about the field of astrobiology for the first time. Also, a Canadian astronaut gave us a lecture about how he became an astronaut and how to achieve goals in life. These impressive talks added to my passion for space and gave me good motivation for studying.

There are also various nonacademic events. We have cultural events like an Indian festival, an LGBT party (Canada is very open in that regard), health events like free yoga classes, and a drama festival in our own theater.

I chose Canada for its education system. Canada has only about 90 universities, so most universities in general maintain a certain quality of education. Also, often they are public, so the comparatively cheap tuition fees for quality education were attractive to me.

No matter what cultural background you have, what identity you have and what you are crazy about, you can feel comfortable in the diverse atmosphere here. I like this environment because it’s full of chances to expand on what you like and also to get to know about something new.

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University of Toronto

Founded in 1827, the University of Toronto has evolved into Canada’s leading educational institution. It has more than 500,000 graduates in 140 countries.

In partnership with Ryugaku Fellowship

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