The Japanese club comes back to life after several setbacks

By Randiek Ryan

The Japanese club was recently revived this year by a group of vibrant students who are passionate about the language and culture in its entirety. After only getting officially elected into office a few weeks after the spring 2024 semester began, the committee was able to plan and carry out a few club events with minimal experience. Despite the seemingly large obstacle before them, they took their newly held positions with pride and worked on it step by step.

The club’s first event was a collaborative event with the extremely generous and welcoming Japanese Embassy that helped them kick-start the club with educational videos, presentations, scholarships/learning opportunities, and interactive Japanese games, art styles, and other cultural activities. Baraka Munene, Susan Awuor, and Perez Lungulu were the Embassy representatives who aided the committee in making this a memorable first event.

Next, was the two-day culture event that was a time for students of all nations to showcase their culture in all its forms. The Japanese club dove for this opportunity to get a stall where they could further market the club and demonstrate the Japanese way of life. With their newly established relationship with the Embassy, they got artifacts, clothing, and games to entertain fellow interested students and staff. Furthermore, Brian, Susan Awuor, and Perez Lungulu - two of whom are alumni of the university - came to support their venture that made all their efforts worth it!

To bring the exciting semester to a subtle close, the club organized a final club meet-up at Shokudo - a Japanese restaurant located in Gigiri on March 29. Knowing that tensions were starting to rise as exam week approached and deadlines due, a simple yet elegant, vibrant yet relaxing time out in the suburb of Gigiri did the trick. The seventeen members, coming from different majors and years, got to connect, unwind, and learn more from each other and Japanese in general.

To summarize, the Japanese club was dormant and struggling to pick up its pace. Even with volunteers to lead as early as Fall 2023, it still looked bleak for the club. Nonetheless, with enough commitment, pursuit, and wise direction, the club was revived and took steady steps. They still have a long way to go with many ideas still brimming in mind; but what they’ve accomplished is proof of their capability. The club is hopeful that this is the start of many more. They are deeply grateful to the university’s administration, Japanese Embassy, their patron, and most of all their club members for making it a success thus far!

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