INTERVIEW WITH GRADUATES
Four years of balancing
studies with club activities
Graduated from the Department of Asian Pacific Studies, Faculty of International Development (current: Faculty of International Studies) in 2004
Home Country: England
Mr. Heselton is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of International Studies currently as of 2017.
Came to Japan to master karate
I am currently an associate professor in the Faculty of International Studies at Takushoku University. As I endeavored to improve my own foreign language skills over the years, I became increasingly interested in many of those issues that are at the forefront of sociolinguistics and second language acquisition. This interest in how languages are acquired combined with my passion for teaching was the impetus for me to decide to transition into university teaching. I specialize in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and currently teach English related subjects such as Oral Communication, Foundation Skills and Practical English. In addition, I am responsible for an English for Specific Purposes (ESP) course that teaches students, who are on sport scholarships, English through sport. My current areas of research are, foreign language anxiety, dyslexia in foreign language teaching, and teacher and learner motivation. I came to Japan initially at the age of eighteen; not in search of employment, but to pursue my burning desire to study Japanese martial arts, particularly karate. While teaching English at a foreign language school, I learned karate from what I perceived as the most highly skilled practitioners of the art. After living in Japan for 5 years, I reached a pivotal stage in my life and decided, as a result of various influences, that it was the right time for me to go back to school and embark on a university education, and so I entered the Faculty of International Development (currently the Faculty of International Studies) at Takushoku University. My time as a student went by extremely quickly and it always seemed like there were never enough hours in the day for me to process everything that was going on around me. Furthermore, as I was also an active member of the karate club and training 6 days a week, finding the right balance between my club activities and my studies did prove challenging at times. However, I can say with pride that it is such invaluable experience that has moulded me in to the person I am today.
I joined Professor Ikuo Kayahara’s seminar. The seminar had a focus on security studies, with an emphasis on the relationship between China and Japan. Kayahara Sensei knew I had been working as an English instructor before entering Takushoku University so in my second year he kindly suggested I teach English to the rest of the seminar students. It not only helped me to build a good rapport with the rest of the students, but also helped me improve my Japanese and maintain my passion for teaching. Kayahara Sensei had a huge impact on my life at University. He was not only empathetic of my busy schedule trying to balance my karate club commitments and my studies, but he often gave me invaluable advice about my studies and my life which I still hold dear to this day.In addition, Watanabe Toshio Sensei, who was the dean of the International Faculty at the time, was always very encouraging. I found his lectures and his friendly teaching style to be very inspiring , and it still serves as an example for me today when I teach. Looking back over my four years as a student there were many interesting and life changing experiences. However, if asked to choose what mounded me the most, I would have to say the experiences I shared and the friendships I developed through my four years as a student in the karate club.
Finding things you have in common
I sincerely hope that you; not only make the most of your time as a student to develop yourself on both a personal and academic level, but also make the most of all the unique opportunities available to you in the International Faculty of Takushoku. Furthermore, although you may experience sociocultural differences between Japan and your own country, my advice to you is try not to focus too much on those differences but more on the similarities. Finally, be resilient, be confident, be positive and most importantly believe in yourself.
Continuing to acquire legal knowledge,
And enhancing professional skills
The existence of friends
that helped to broaden my perspectives
Make use of student life to develop yourself,
and enjoy making progress
Building a foundation for working
on an international scale
A comfortable and
fulfilling dormitory life
Four years of studying
and engaging in activities