Four recent graduates from the University of Tennessee have been accepted to participate in the 2020 Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program.
The JET Program is a competitive employment opportunity for young professionals to live and work in Japan. Applicants must have a strong interest in Japan and be willing to work in public and private schools throughout Japan.
UT alumni, Sarah Daugherty, Brynna Williams, Warren Donnell, and Lydia Vick were selected by the Consulate-General of Japan in Nashville to participate in the 2020 JET program.
“I applied to the JET program because of my interest not just in Japanese culture, but in bringing our nations closer together through mutual understanding,” Brynna Williams said.
Williams graduated in May 2019 with a major in Language and World Business with a concentration in Japanese. In her junior year of college, Williams studied abroad and met a great number of friends from a variety of backgrounds. Her experience abroad inspired her to apply for the program.
“I hope that by helping Japanese students in their study of English, I will be able to enable them to have, in the future, an experience as rewarding and enjoyable as the one I had,” Williams said, “and allow them to make friendships that span the distance of the globe and bring us all a little closer together.”
She is looking forward to forging new relationships with co-workers, students, and residents in her town and creating lasting friendships.
Like Williams, Warren Donnell studied abroad in Japan and spent June at an elementary school in a teacher assistant internship position sponsored by Kansai Gaidai University.
Donnell graduated with a major in World Business and Foreign Language, with a concentration in Japanese and a minor in mathematics.
Donnell is looking forward to immersing himself back into Japanese culture.
Some of the most memorable times he had in Japan while studying abroad were visiting locations that were relatively unknown.
“The greatest joy of traveling is discovering hidden treasures in unexpected places,” Donnell said.
Joining the 2020 JET Program is UT alum, Sarah Daugherty. She graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in Language and World Business with a Japanese concentration and a minor in history.
Daugherty says that she is looking forward to forming relationships with new people.
Daugherty’s interest in Japan sparked when she was in middle school, and she has the JET program in mind for post-grad since high school. She developed a passion for teaching while teaching Japanese to kids and teens at summer camp.
“The fact that JET was going to allow me to do something I love while also immersing myself in the language and culture I had spent the last four years studying drove me to apply,” Daugherty said.
Daugherty will be serving as an assistant language teacher and a cultural ambassador. “I’m so excited to be able to connect my students and co-workers to American and specifically Appalachian culture,” she said.
Likewise, Lydia Vick is most looking forward to the cultural exchange aspect of the program.
Vick received her degree in sociology from UT and applied to the JET Program because it combines her career goals of promoting education and helping students grow while fulfilling her desire to experience life in Japan.
“I’m excited to make connections that will have an educational and cultural impact on myself and others in the community I am placed in,” Vick said.
With more than 55 countries around the world currently participating in JET, this program will allow our alumni a unique cultural exchange opportunity to meet people from all around the world, living and working in Japan.