1. Home
  2. Student Voice No.2

Student Voice No.2


Doctor's course student. Department of Civil Engineering, The University of Tokyo

My name is Liyanto Eddy and I come from Indonesia. As of this time, I am a second year doctoral student in the Department of Civil Engineering, The University of Tokyo, Japan. First of all I would like to express my sincere gratitude to IAC of JSCE for allowing me to participate in the student voice as a content of JSCE student and alumni network. Given this opportunity, I would like to share about my experience of living in Japan and being a doctoral student at the University of Tokyo.

More than 1.5 years I have spent my life in Japan since my arrival in October 2012. “I love Japan” is the most appropriate sentence that can describe my feeling after being in Japan for more than 1.5 years.  I think that Japan is a country where traditional and modern cultures exist in a unity. It is a common view to see that people wearing suits are walking in Shibuya with their cellular phones and bags. On the other side, it is also a common view to see people wearing kimono are walking on the streets on Sunday or for special holidays. Many high rise buildings are located in Tokyo. However, many traditional buildings are also still well preserved in Tokyo. Meiji Jingu was the first place that I visited when I first arrived in Tokyo. Many advanced technologies have been developed in Japan such as earthquake early warning system buzzed on the cell phone, high-speed railway lines Shinkansen, and others. All systems in Japan are very safe and convenience, i.e. transportation system, health system and other systems. When I first arrived in Japan, my first impression was that Japan is very clean and beautiful. It is very rare to see trash on the ground. Moreover, the people are helpful, kind, and friendly and the foods are delicious and healthy. Okonomiyaki is my favorite food in Japan.

After registering for International Graduate Program in the Department of Civil Engineering, The University of Tokyo in November 2011, I was accepted as a Doctoral Student and started my new life in Tokyo from October 2012.  Generally, lecturers and research in the Department of Civil Engineering are all given in English. However, Japanese language is important for daily life. Japanese Language Class is provided for the beginner, like me. The Foreign Student Office, tutor and supervisor also assist me not only inside the university but also outside the university. My tutor, Mr. Yoshiyuki Takano, is the first nice and kind person that I met when I first arrived in Japan. He helped me a lot not only for the registration procedures in the university, city office, post office, and bank but also for the adaptation process in Japan. The Staff at Foreign Student Office (FSO) in the University of Tokyo are very friendly, kind, and assisted me fast related to the academic procedures. I also enjoyed studying Japanese in Japanese Language Class. Many activities were carried out besides studying Japanese, such as: Ocha tea ceremony, speech in Japanese, visiting shrines, and others. At the University of Tokyo I belong to Nagai Laboratory. My research environment is also wonderful. Of course, being a doctoral student is very tough. Unexpected problems sometimes come and have to be tackled. However, I believe that strong passion and enthusiasm are needed to overcome the problems that I face. Students in my lab come from several countries. Hence, I can understand various cultures in the world. They do not just be friends with me but also have become a family. Basically, we have weekly lab meetings and in the lab meetings we present our weekly progress and our supervisor is very helpful in giving guidance for our research. Moreover, once in two weeks, Joint lab meeting will be held with another laboratory, Kishi Laboratory. Sometimes, we will give a presentation about our research in this meeting. Students from another laboratory and researchers from other companies also join in this meeting and exchange their ideas about research. Parties and trips are often held in my laboratory either with or without professors. In addition, the interaction with other students is not only limited to my laboratory.  I also interact with other friends from various laboratories. Eventually, what I can say is that I really enjoy my life in Japan generally and my academic life at The University of Tokyo particularly. There have been much more exciting experiences during these 1.5 years that could not be described. In addition, my ongoing research, Numerical Simulation of a Beam Column Joint with Complex Reinforcement Arrangement by 3D Discrete Model, can be found on the PDF file below.

At last, I would like to congratulate for the 100th anniversary of JSCE. I think that JSCE has extremely supported young engineers and young researchers in Japan. Many events have been organized by JSCE such as: Joint Company Information Session, International Summer Symposium, and others that are very useful for young engineers and young researchers in Japan.

            Japanese Language Class                                         Nagai & Kishi Lab Members

 Party with Students from Other Laboratories               JSCE International Summer Symposium