Received an email “Questionnaire for former Japanese Government Scholars”

It was mailed to my private email address which was setup well after I left Japan back in 2001. So I assume that they got my email from the Japanese Consulate here in Brunei, where I’m registered as a former scholarship student. The email links to the 14 multiple choice questions at JASSO, Japan Student Services Organization. I’ve never heard of JASSO before but I guess it was setup after I left Japan. Probably after Monbushou became Monbukagakushou.

Anyway, those questions, in English, were kind of tame, and none too revealing. Just like how I would have set it up. I did something similar during my six-months Japanese language course in Kakuma Campus, Kanazawa Daigaku, Ishikawa-ken. My survey was whether most international students who studied in Japan had any ‘cultural’ connections with Japan. My survey found none. Most of the international students studying in Kanazawa Daigaku then were just interested in Japan, no cultural affiliations whatsoever. Only a minority had background cultural relationships with Japan. Usually there were nissei (second generation Japanese descendants) or more in their home country.

Anyway, if you received the same email, do spare less than five minutes of your life to answering the 14 multiple choice questions. Probably it’ll help the Japanese Government fine-tune their scholarship offerings to international students. FYI, government allocated budget to support such activities are down compared to previous years, as can be seen by the abolishment of reunion gatherings. Can’t blame them. Their economy is still in the doldrums and they’ve got to prioritize how they spend their own money. Paying for air tickets to/from Japan to attend a gathering of former students is definitely not a priority. A disappointment but quite understandable.

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