His encouragement

Last night, I met my old teacher, Suzuki-sensei who graduated from university in the US ten years ago. I showered him with many questions about his academic life of those days, what sort of things were harder to deal with for international students, and, in reality, whether I could carry my studies through to the end in the UK. He greatly cheered me up, gave his advice and reassured me that everything will be all right.

As one thing I should practise in Japan, he strongly recommended me to acquire the skill of reading and get used to it completely, as reading up on huge amounts of literature comes before everything such as participating in discussions and writing essays, and even enjoying friendships there. He explained that a clever student reads papers rapidly and finishes work, so you could assign your own time to doing assignments, chatting with friends or going out, after you have quickly read and finished all the work.

Then he said, after finishing the first semester, you would completely get used to the flow and, after that, just repeat it. The most important thing is that you should trust yourself and have no doubt about getting into the swing soon.

Furthermore, he said, you should make friends of the same nationality as much as possible. People think that having friends of the same culture might stifle adapting yourself into the local circumstances in a different country; however, actually, you have less time to spend with friends and doing work with other nationality students dominates your time. So, once you find the same nationality students, keep relations with them and exchange much information about studies.

I very much appreciate his advice!