Japanese exchange students immerse in Kolbe community culture during visit

14 September 2023

The heartwarming rekindling of international connections were on display at Kolbe Catholic college in July, when staff and students welcomed a group of 20 Japanese students and three teachers as part of the college’s annual Japanese Cultural Exchange Program.

The program was brought back after a three year break since 2019. The visiting group from Keio Futsubu School in Tokyo commenced their stay in Western Australia with visits to several tourist spots and savouring local delicacies. For the next five days, the Japanese students immersed themselves into Kolbe’s

learning environment, learning a diverse range of experiences including cooking, Italian language, science, visual arts to participating in regular classes including dance, drama and music.

Kyohhei Futaki, Japanese Teacher said students had the wonderful opportunity to forge connections with new international friends, while the Keio students also created cherished memories during their time in WA.

‘The exchange wasn’t just about learning; it was about fostering a sense of camaraderie and understanding that transcends cultural barriers.’

‘A sincere expression of gratitude is due to the College’s community for their unwavering support in making this exchange a resounding success. The families who opened their homes and hearts to the Japanese students played an integral role in creating an environment where cultural exchange could thrive,’ Year 11 student Le’shay said,

‘The Japanese exchange was amazing. My family and I had the privilege of hosting Yuto, one of the Japanese students. This provided me with numerous opportunities to apply the Japanese language skills I had been cultivating over the past 5 years. It was a great and memorable experience.’

Liam, Year 11 student said ‘It was interesting to get to know our exchange students and experience their culture up close. I forged some new friendships and am eagerly anticipating the opportunity to visit Japan and see t hem again. I can’t wait to dive deeper into their country, culture, and way of life!’

Kolbe staff confirmed that plans are set in motion for the next chapter of this journey. In January 2024, students and staff from Kolbe Catholic College are poised to embark on a reciprocal adventure, venturing to Tokyo to continue the cross-cultural dialogue that has been established.

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