This post is also available in: Indonesia

Written by: Rika Agustin

The biggest life lesson is that we shouldn’t miss opportunities that exist.

Finding A Dream By Learning Japanese

I started learning  Japanese in high school. Japanese, a language that has more than one letter, is exactly very difficult for me when first time learning it. I wasn’t that interested in the first place, but my Japanese teacher taught us so much fun, which makes me interested in learning the language right after and makes me dream to be a Japanese language teacher in the future.

Graduated from high school, I continued my education at a university in Indonesia and chose Japanese literature as my major. Learning the language in higher education made me realize one more time how difficult to learn Japanese is, and how adorable the country is at the same time! That triggers makes me want to work in Japan and oh, my imagination runs wild!

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Learning Japanese for 4 years in the university doesn’t mean that you can easily able to work in Japan for certain. I faced a lot of failures in job hunting in Japan, in addition to my family didn’t agree to my choice to work in Japan because they worry about me go to a place that is far away.

Even so, I didn’t give up.

I decided to work for a Japanese company in Jakarta after my graduation to improve my skill which I think could be helpful for me to work in Japan. Unfortunately, I only had half a year to survive in Jakarta for many reasons. When I decided to quit my job, I didn’t have a plan where to work next. At the same time, I didn’t hope to work in Japan because I know that it is impossible and I think that I have to give up on my dream.

Until one day, an advertisement on Facebook caught my eyes.

My Turning Point in Life

I saw an advertisement on Facebook about the METI Internship program in Japan for 3 months.  I was not confident enough to apply because it looks difficult with a lot of applicants. I was pessimistic.

With fifty-fifty feelings, I tried my luck and fill out the online application form. It takes me so much time to finally complete the form, not only because there were so many things to fill in but also because I didn’t have enough courage to submit it. After a lot of time, I finally pushed submit button on the last day of registration.

A few days later, I got a call for the first interview which was conducted in Japanese and English.  I was extremely nervous, especially when I knew other applicants came from top universities in Indonesia. Alhamdulillah, I passed the first interview and moved to the second interview which is conducted all in Japanese.

I was asked where I wanted to work and what kind of job I wanted to do. Holding a dream I gave up in my heart, I answered that I am ready to be placed anywhere in Japan and I want to work in a tourism-related field, such as travel agent or a hotel because I love to meet new people.

Alhamdulillah, Allah gave me another blessing that allows me to pass the second interview.

Get through the second interview does not mean that I could go to Japan right after because there will be a matching process with Japanese companies that would accept us for internships. I have to wait for about a month to find a company I matched to. It was a hotel in Miyakojima, Okinawa.

My Internships Period Starts!

I had a 3-month internship in a hotel in Miyakojima. During the internship, I experienced various jobs such as working in restaurants, housekeeping, and front desk.

It was my first experience working in a hotel and I am very grateful. I could practice Japanese especially when I am at the front desk.

After my internship period over, the hotel offered me to work there as their employee! Of course, I said yes!

My Dream (That I Gave Up) Came True

I have had to go back to Indonesia first and arrange the visa requirements to return to Japan to work, which is now a permanent employee. It takes me 3 months until all my via requirements settle and ready to depart to Japan.

I started my career as a front desk in the hotel and this is my second year working in Japan. I never imagined working in Okinawa and I fall in love with this resort area.

Ocean breeze in Okinawa

I can’t imagine if I didn’t fill out the internship registration form on the last day of registration.  Maybe I won’t be here.

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