Born 1983, a 27-year-old Singaporean dreamer who first came into contact with Japanese popular culture at the age of 15 started picking up the Japanese language by himself. Accepted into a Junior College, he decided to opt out and appealed to do Internet Computing in Temasek Polytechnic and there began his official journey in Japanese language learning.
At the age of 20, he met a group of students from Fukuoka and decided to take his first F&E trip overseas with his best friend to the land of the rising sun. An 11-day trip to Tokyo and Fukuoka and he decided that someday he is going to live and work in Japan.
While enlisted in the army, he decided to apply to do Japanese Studies at the National University of Singapore just so he could apply for the Japanese Embassy’s Monbukagakusho Scholarship, only offered to NUS undergraduates majoring in Japanese Studies. As his family could not afford to send him to Japan on exchange programs, that was his only option.
He was accepted into the faculty of Arts & Social Sciences. In his first year, he thought a Japanese Studies degree is only going to get him a scholarship to live in Japan for a year. Given his interest in languages, he decided to forgo the scholarship and majored in English linguistics which would help him get a teaching job and live for a longer period in Japan.
Upon graduation, he started working in the media industry doing broadcast censorship and video editing. For 2 years, he worked hard to save up for a trip to Japan. In the September of 2009, he took 5 weeks of unpaid leave and headed to Thailand to do the CELTA course to increase his chances of getting work. And in the spring of 2010, he headed to Okazaki for 6 months of Japanese language studies and is now teaching English to junior high school students and corporate clients.
It took me 7 years to fulfill my dream of living and teaching here. Don’t give up on yours.