Antony Karanja NDIRANGU
My name is Antony Karanja Ndirangu, a second year masters student in the faculty of Economics. Before coming to Japan, I worked for the government in my home country, Kenya, where I was involved in development planning and monitoring and evaluation of socio-economic development projects and programs. It is while serving in the State Department of Planning that I got an opportunity, through the African Business Education Initiative (ABE) by JICA, to come to Japan for my Masters degree, beginning September 2014.
I had always held Japan in high regard, considering its remarkable development history. Rising from the ruins of the twin atomic bombings in 1945 in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, through numerous disasters and natural catastrophes to become an economic powerhouse in about three decades, and without much in terms of natural resources is not just remarkable, but portrays an enduring resilience that came to be known as an economic miracle. Having studied economics in my undergraduate, I wanted to tap from this experience and contribute to my country’s quest to attain middle income status by the year 2030, and a high quality of life for all its citizens.
I naturally wanted to continue studying economics, having experienced in my working life, the challenges involved in the exploitation and management of resources. Particularly, the question of how sustainable development can be achieved, especially in developing economies made me want to venture more into environmental, energy and natural resource economics. The next bit was to settle on a University from the long list presented to me. I took time to look at the profiles of several universities, especially their economics departments, and was impressed with what I saw on Kyushu University. I felt it had what it takes to mold an all-round economist out of me, while at the same time taking care of my area of interest. This far I have not been disappointed one bit, in my study of the efficiency of renewable energy subsidies in volatile energy markets.
For the last one year, I feel the proper foundation has been set for the pursuit of my academic ambitions. I have had very fruitful, informative and interactive class and seminar sessions with professors and colleagues from diverse backgrounds, interests and nationalities. This has greatly broadened my understanding of life and economics. The University has an elaborate support system, for international students particularly. The International Students Support Center, Square international (SQI), Square academic (SQA) and the students office all play a vital role in facilitating international students with their day to day academic, residential and social needs. The University also offers various recreational facilities and events, as well as other non-academic programs. I have particularly enjoyed studying Japanese during the Japanese language classes, as well as numerous social events organized by different university or student groups. They have helped me bridge the huge cultural distance between my culture and Japanese culture, but also introduced me to diverse cultures from across the globe. I would encourage anyone considering the Faculty of Economics not to look back, there may be many unanswered questions, but the adventure is worthwhile, step out, take the challenge see new things and learn new ideas.