After a long day of classes, as students, we do deserve to feast well from time to time and appreciate the food near our area. Definitely, you can go to Kawagoe or even Tokyo to find a good restaurant, and most likely, you will find quite a few of those. However, you do not need to go that far to get great meals as the TIU neighborhood itself offers culturally-diverse, delicious and filling food!
After almost two years of being a TIU student, I have been to a lot of restaurants near the TIU campus so let me introduce you to my top 5 restaurants around TIU!
As a sushi and sashimi lover, one of my favorites would definitely be Marudon which is located near the gate of Campus 1. Under 1000 yen, you are able to pick from a wide variety of kaisendon, or seafood on a bowl of rice. Counting all options from their menu, they actually offer 84+ different kaisendon! The menu varies with the topping so if you only like salmon, they have that exact option for you. If you want everything in one, their most popular kaisendon is for you. My personal pick would be their normal kaisendon, not because I do not have personality, but because you just get the best of everything in one rice bowl. While they allow a few to dine-in, it is usually better to buy take-outs and eat together with your friends on campus.
There are those days when one would crave for fried food. Located just beside Marudon, Momokara offers you high-quality and tasty karaage! On top of that, it is quite affordable as all options are only under 900 yen. Most of their bentos range from 500yen to 600yen, including a big bowl of rice, and freshly-fried, beautiful-looking karaage. I would personally recommend the Egg Bomber bento. From the name itself, you can already imagine how the half-boiled egg just goes so well with the karaages. Momokara does not however have an eat-in area so make sure to find somewhere to feast on these delicate bentos.
The next recommendation would probably be my favorite among the list as I love anything spicy, so spicy food lovers out there, I got you! Juntara, an Indian restaurant, offers not only curry and naan, but also rice, noodles, and lots of salads. For those who cannot handle spicy food, you can customize your curry with how much spice you can handle. If you are however up for a challenge, you can try making it a bit spicier than of your liking, and pair your meal with lassi, a traditional yogurt drink popular in India. The serving size may also be too big for those who have a small appetite, but nevertheless, it is still worth a try!
After introducing meals rich in taste and spices, naturally, we check out some simple and homey tastes. I personally would go for Chinese cuisine, and just around TIU, we have Ryuushouhanten, a Chinese restaurant that offers a wide variety of dishes ranging from fried rice and mapo tofu to fried dumplings and sweet-and-spicy prawns. The only problem whenever I look at their menu is to make a decision. But you can never go wrong with their 野菜あん, or vegetable ankake, which is basically stir-fried vegetables in thick sauce. It has always reminded me of my mother’s cooking, which is quite nostalgic.
Of course, this list would not be complete without a ramen place. Just a few semesters ago, this ramen place did not exist. Ebi Tonkotsu Ramen in front of the Kasumigaseki Station opened just last year. Since its opening, they have gained a lot of loyal customers such as me. Their most popular dish – as you might have guessed – is the Ebi Tonkotsu Ramen, a dish composed of prawn-based broth and different spices. Not only is the broth heavenly, the noodles are thinner than your usual ramen which makes it special and easy to eat. What’s more? They offer you unlimited rice bowls to eat with your leftover soup. Indeed, you cannot leave the restaurant without filling up your stomach.
As a part of an international community, we as students get to enjoy culturally-diverse cuisines that are just right around the corner. Especially for freshmen, explore our neighborhood and check out these great restaurants! For those who have tried all of the restaurants on this list, would you agree with my choices?
この作文コンテストはイングリッシュ・プラザライブラリーチームの伝統行事となっています。学生は執筆のスタイルに制限はなく匿名で作品を提出することができます。提出期間後、受理された作品はEnglish Plaza Libraryの特設サイトで閲覧することができ、気に入った作品に投票できるようウェブサイトに掲載されます。最終的に一番多くの票を集めた作品は学期の優秀作品として表彰されます。参加賞として全ての参加者の作品は図書館の冊子に載せられますので、前学期の作品も閲覧いただけます！
2020秋学期は、ハロウィンをテーマにしたコンテストで、面白い作品が多く寄せられました。今回のテーマは、このご時世に学生がより自分の想いや経験を共有できるよう、テーマを『Slice of life・ 人生の一片』と名付けました。アヴェンチ達とEPライブラリーチームは学生が想像力を活かして書くことのできるお題であると考えました。学生の表現力に制限をかけないものになりました。
この企画で計16の素晴らしい作品が寄せられました。これらの中で1番多くの票を集め前期の最優秀に選ばれたのは『Send to today me ~今日に私を送って』です。以下に特集しています！
Every semester, the English Plaza Library Team organizes a Writing Contest on a timely theme where students can showcase their talents in writing and have their pieces read by other students. To know more about the contest, I invited one of the organizers and also an intern at EP Library, Avanthi, for an interview.
The Writing Contest has been a semester tradition for the EP Library team. They accept works in any style from students submitting anonymously. After the submission period, the team publishes all accepted pieces on their website so that the whole TIU community can enjoy and vote for the piece they like the most. Finally, the work that has the most votes would be hailed as the winning piece of the semester. As a consolation prize to all participants, all works are published as a physical book available in the Library so everyone can take a look at entries from previous semesters’ contests.
Last semester, with the Halloween theme, the contest attracted a great number of interesting pieces. This time, the organizers collectively decided to focus on a theme where students can be a bit more open to sharing, especially during this vulnerable period of time. They have named this theme “Slice of Life.” Avanthi, along with the team, thought that this was a topic many students can write about while at the same time, unleashing their creativity. Participants were encouraged to be as expressive as they wanted.
This event garnered the most entries with a total of 16 impressive submissions. Among these, the most-voted piece of this semester was “Send to today me”, which we are featuring as follows!
If you are interested to see other entries of this semester’s contest, you can find them here. They will also soon be published in the form of a physical book that will be available in the library like previous entries so do not miss out on that!
Written by Saki Arimoto Edited by Theo T. Fok Translated by Kotoko F.
As an international student, one can experience unforeseen difficulties. But at the same time, one can also have new discoveries about the culture and traditions, as well as about oneself. I interviewed a friend, Tracy, or Minh Tam by birth, who shared her ongoing journey to self-actualization in Japan.
Tracy is a junior majoring in Business Economics. Interestingly, people call her different names depending on how they met her. Among her friends in school she goes by Tracy, while she uses Min at work. She is fond of the color pink as she believes it symbolizes her personality – bright and positive. She had had quite a number of experiences outside the university that molded her to how she is as a person now.
Tracy: I have done a lot of part-time jobs. The first one was factory work during my first year in the university. I had to pack the food by putting it into a plastic bag. I was introduced to this job by a friend, but to be honest, I didn’t really like the place since I was not allowed to speak with my coworkers. After nearly a year, I quit the job, and looked for a job that allowed communication in Japanese. I found a job at a sushi restaurant. I have been working there for around two years already and I stay there until now because I really enjoy working there. Not only do I get to know more about Japanese traditional food, but I am actually able to use my Japanese, and I can tell I have improved since then. I actually dream of opening a sushi restaurant of my own in my home country, Vietnam.
Aside from the sushi restaurant job, Tracy also works at a family restaurant.
Tracy: I recently got another job at a family restaurant and the more interesting thing about the job is I am able to talk directly to customers in Japanese, unlike at the sushi restaurant where I only speak to my fellow coworkers in the kitchen. I realize how much I enjoy speaking Japanese whenever I speak to Japanese customers who are, most of the time, nice and welcoming. On top of this, my boss is also very nice and laid back so I think it is a very different experience, and I enjoy it the same.
She also adds that she works as an English part-time teacher.
Tracy: My favorite job among all the ones I have been doing is teaching English to kids. I found this job using a platform where they connect teachers and students. Fortunately, someone hired me to be their teacher. I have been teaching for more than two years and I have gotten really close to my students. And before the class starts, I usually feel very tired but as soon as I meet the students and see how they have improved in English, I feel a sense of happiness and in a way, I get my energy from them.
Needless to say, Tracy is a hard-worker. And so I wondered what she does during her free time if she had any.
Tracy: I love traveling. Actually, when I arrived in Japan, I got the impression that the sky was so blue and beautiful, and realized I have to see more beautiful places. I put a portion of my salary aside for traveling so that when either the summer or winter break comes, I can go on a trip somewhere with some friends.
Up until now, she has been to Osaka, Niigata, Kusatsu, Nikko, Nagano, Enoshima, and Yokohama, among others.
Tracy: I record all my travels on my Instagram account using the highlight feature. So whenever I go to a new place, I make a new highlight and it gives me a sense of achievement. Also, when I want to travel but do not really have the luxury to do so, I go to the station and ride the train until the last stop then take the train back to the station. This might be a bit weird but I enjoy seeing new things.
Another thing Tracy loves to do is photography in which she found passion within her stay in Japan.
Tracy: I used to love photography back in Vietnam but I was not able to do much photography until I could afford decent cameras. Thanks to my part-time jobs, I was able to purchase an Instax camera and a DSLR one which led me back to my passion. I am mostly into taking landscape photos and some portrait photos of my really good friends. I have a separate account for my photography and not only do I post photos there, but I also include some short stories or messages mostly about my time here in Japan.
Tracy used to only focus on academics when she was a high school student in Vietnam, but after coming to Japan, she realized that there is much more than that to life. “Working in different places is a way for me to experience the Japanese culture and make friends,” she emphasized. Of course, as an international student – and especially for Tracy – there are times that one can feel homesick. She keeps herself occupied so she can stay positive; she believes that having such a lifestyle is important to overcome hardships. Furthermore, she advises her fellow international students to “keep smiling, spread positive energy, and take on an adventure!”
You can see more of her beautifully-taken photos on her Instagram @takenby.tracy
March has passed and so has the graduation ceremony. This year, as the ceremony was held virtually, however, it was a bit different. Continue reading below as we walk you through this year’s special ceremony!
Undoubtedly, this year’s graduating class might have been said to have the toughest time of their lives. With the prospect of “new normal” seeping into every part of life, the process of job-hunting, internships, part-time jobs, as well as the new etiquette of socializing and leisure activities has got these new graduates jump on a wild ride in their last semesters. Nonetheless, they have managed to pull through, and it surely is an achievement that calls for celebration.
Due to Covid-19, Tokyo International University has decided to hold the ceremony online, keeping in mind the safety of everyone, especially the graduates. Understanding student’s apprehension and excitement for an online graduation ceremony, the university had tried their hardest to organize a special ceremony that kept the same grandiosity as previously held in-person graduation ceremonies.
Taking place on March 13, the ceremony began with Chancellor and Chair Kurata Nobuyasu’s touching and motivational message for the graduates, followed by President Shuhei Shiozawa’s speech, giving more advice for the new life chapter to our new graduates. Participants were deeply moved by their wise and caring words, that surely new graduates would remember and be grateful for. The ceremony then proceeded with a montage of photos of the graduating class participating in different activities in the background of our university hymn, bringing back the graduates’ feeling of nice nostalgia.
A face-to-face graduation ceremony would have been wonderful; however, in the time of the pandemic, an online graduation ceremony such as this surely is not a letdown. The university had also sent out the nicely packaged diploma along with small gifts as a token of appreciation for this year’s graduating class so that they would not miss out.
In addition to this, the E-Track Alumni Association also organized a virtual meet-up where professors, alumni, and graduates gathered. Know more about this event here!
On behalf of all kouhai in TIU, if possible, I would like to congratulate the class of 2021 for not only graduating but also for overcoming some of the toughest challenges one can face in their lives! Such resilience is admirable. Despite not being there physically, we would like to celebrate everyone’s achievement in spirit and are also grateful for all the memories as well as advice. Lastly, we would like to wish TIU 2021 Spring Graduates all the best in their future endeavors and good health.
Celebrating the graduating class of 2021, the E-Track Alumni Association (EAA) is back again with another exciting event.
Similar to the graduation ceremony, the meet-up was held online in order to ensure safety for all graduates, alumni, and staff. As a coordinating campus representative, I had the opportunity to witness this exclusive event, and am here to provide a walkthrough of the exciting process you may have missed!
The meet-up gathered an impressive number of over 70 registrants, including professors, staff, alumni, and graduate students. With more than half of the registrants attending, this once again spoke for the TIU’s community spirit – the celebration of various countries, backgrounds, affiliations, and ages. It was definitely wonderful to see new and familiar faces on one screen!
Taking place on the evening of March 13, the meet-up was hosted by both EAA’s vice-chairpersons, Wichuta Teeratanabodee and Woradon Yomjinda. The chairperson of EAA, Bastian Harth began the event with his warm opening remarks, congratulating and welcoming the graduates to the association. This set the tone for the event, in which conversations were sparked through a number of exciting group activities and online games.
In my case, being able to meet and have conversations with many alumni, professors, and graduate students, at the same time playing skribbl.io, drawing, and guessing game, is undoubtedly a rare opportunity that will remain memorable.
The night was wrapped up by the Professor of Sociology and Social Psychology, Mr. Thomas Blackwood. He congratulated the graduating students and encouraged them with motivational advice for the new chapter of their lives.
One hour of the event was not long, but it was packed with value sharings and connections as one can expect from such a highly diverse community. 2020 was a difficult year, especially for graduating students, who had to manage all the challenging graduation requirements topped with the coronavirus situation. Graduating especially during these times requires remarkable effort and mental strength, to say the least. The meet-up was not only the graduates’ opportunity to share their experience but also for all the students of TIU to reflect and prepare better for their own journey ahead.
To the Class of 2021, congratulations on your graduation! We wish you good health and the best for your future endeavors!
The promotional post for this event is below ⬇️
Follow TIU E-Track Alumni Association’s IG for updates on future events!