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Housing and Finances

Housing

Students in the KCJS Summer Programs in Modern and Classical Japanese have two housing options: a Japanese homestay or independently arranged housing, including studio apartments.

All housing is off campus, so you will commute to Doshisha University via public transportation, on foot, or by bicycle, depending upon the location of your lodging. You will be responsible for your own transportation expenses.

Note: Those who are enrolled in the intermediate (2nd and 3rd year) Japanese program are strongly recommended to select a homestay with a Japanese family in order to maximize opportunities to converse in Japanese.

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Homestay

Living in a Japanese household has always been the housing option of choice to increase your proficiency in Japanese and as the best way to learn about Japanese culture through daily interaction with a Japanese family. Homestays include a private room for the KCJS student, who is provided with both breakfast and dinner. Most homestay families get high marks for their home‐cooked food. Most homestays will also have Internet access. If your homestay doesn’t have it, KCJS will provide you with a wireless access device to use at home free of charge.

KCJS homestay families vary widely in location, family composition, and their experience with foreign students, so you should be prepared to accept the particular situation of the family to whom you are assigned. It is also important that you have realistic expectations about your homestay experience. The great majority of homestay experiences work out very well, but this owes much to constant accommodation on both sides, between people from very different cultures and sometimes of contrasting personalities.

Most Japanese live in small homes, hence most do not have the extra room needed for a visiting student while their children are still young. As a result, many of our host parents are in their forties, fifties, sixties, and some even older, with children who are already grown and working but who may continue to live at home. Fathers in Japanese families are often a muted presence, staying out late on business and leaving early in the morning. The typical Japanese household is held together by the mother, who usually prepares the food for the visiting student, and who provides most of the interaction with the student. In fact, a small number of homestays consist of only a single mother, with or without a child. Such families almost always work out wonderfully as homestay choices, so you need to realize that a good homestay need not always involve a vibrant family life in constant contact with two parents plus one or more children.

The one common complaint about the homestay option has nothing to do with the families themselves, but with the distance of the commute to and from school. The number of Japanese families willing to take in a foreign student is limited, so it is not possible to find enough homestay families within a short distance of the Doshisha campus. On average, most homestays are within a one hour commute by bicycle, bus and/or train, with some closer and some a bit farther away.

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Independently Arranged Housing

If you prefer, you are welcome to make your own arrangements for housing. Former students have used both Kyoto Apartment <http://www.kyoto-apartment.com> and J-Stay <http://j-stay.jp/index.php> for independent housing arrangements. Kyoto Apartment offers both apartments and guest houses, while J-Stay offers only guest and shared houses. English services are available at both agencies. Please note that KCJS is not associated with these agencies and assumes no responsibility for problems resulting from your contract. Please consider carefully whether entering into an independent contract without the support of KCJS is in your best interest.

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Feedback from alumni about housing

Homestay:

“My homestay family is really great. They really welcomed me into their home and were willing to do things with me (like going sight-seeing), and I talked to them a lot. Staying with a host family was probably the best decision I made. It’s a 40 min-1 hr. bus ride to campus, but I did homework on the bus and learned about the layout of Kyoto along the way, so it was fine.”

“Living in a homestay greatly impacted my study abroad experience. Communicating with my host family improved my fluency and comfortability with speaking in Japanese. My host family also included me in family trips and dinners and I felt that I was part of a Japanese family.”

“I loved my homestay. It was perfect. My okaasan should be awarded homestay mother of the year! Not one bad things to say about my experience exists.

“I think choosing hosmestay is the best choice of this program. I am able to experience really Japanese-style life. Eat, sleep, and talk with locals is a lot of fun. I also developed a lot of Japanese habits from now on and saying in homestay really help me understand better about Japanese culture.”

Independently Arranged Housing:

Kyoto Apartment (Apartment):
“(My apartment) is nothing really special for an apartment, but was clean and in an awesome location. ANd the company people were very friendly. I LOVED living there because I made really good friends, and the people were nice.”

“Kyoto Apartment is an amazing company to find arrangements through. My apartment was well cared for, furnished, and easy to find. The office workers from Kyoto Apartment are easy to contact an respond to all emails almost immediately. I am very glad I stayed with Kyoto Apartment.”

“The apartment was rather small, but I’m glad I got it. Kyoto Apartment was very helpful and reasonably priced. My air-con unit broke and they fixed it immediately.”

J-Stay (Shared house):
“I live with 4 people, including 3 Japanese people. THey are all very nice, and I get to interact with them a lot. They even had a welcoming party for me. In my opinion, living in a shared house enables you to train your speaking skills, and it also lets you enjoy the amount of freedom that wasn’t allowed in a homestay.”

“My housing was fantastic (and more than I could ask for). It was a quick 20 minute bike ride to school, which I borrowed for free. The rent was very cheap, and the area safe and filled with lost of college students. Lost of convenience stores and cheap supermarkets could be found in the area, and my roommates were a blast! They were all Japanese, so I felt like I lived in a homestay.”

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Fees for Modern Japanese

For Summer 2017, the program fee for Modern Japanese will be $5,130. This will cover tuition, course materials, course-related field trips, and cultural activities. The fee does NOT cover housing, meals, international travel, local transportation, accident/medical insurance, or incidentals. There is a one-time transcript fee of $105 for all registered students. A withdrawal fee of $75 will be assessed for any student who withdraws once registration has been confirmed.

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Fees for Classical Japanese

For Summer 2017, the program fee for Classical Japanese will be $4,100. This covers tuition, course materials, course-related field trips, and cultural activities. The fee does NOT cover housing, meals, international travel, local transportation, accident/medical insurance, or incidentals. There is a one-time transcript fee of $105 for all registered students. A withdrawal fee of $75 will be assessed for any student who withdraws once registration has been confirmed.

All fees above are subject to change. For the latest information, please see the website of the Office of Global Programs at Columbia University.

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Financial Aid and Funding

There are many funding options available to support your summer studies, so you are encouraged to check with your major department, study abroad office, and scholarship office at your home institution regarding the availability of financial aid. The KCJS Summer Programs in Modern and Classical Japanese have offered a limited number of scholarships annually through the KCJS Scholarship Fund and the Japan Foundation. For more information about financial aid and funding, please see the website of the Office of Global Programs at Columbia University.

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Estimated Expenses

Expenses will vary from one student to another depending upon individual spending habits and preferences. Please use the estimated figures below only as a guide. Note that in addition to the following expenses, all students must have health insurance that covers them overseas.

Expenses in dollars

Housing expenses in yen for Modern Japanese Program
(2017/5/25〜7/23)

Housing expenses in yen for Classical Japanese Program
(2017/6/8〜7/23)

Other expenses in yen

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OFFICE OF GLOBAL PROGRAMS/COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

Office of Global Programs

606 Kent Hall
Columbia University
1140 Amsterdam, Mail Code 3948
New York, NY 10027 USA
Tel: 212-854-2559
Fax: 212-854-5164
Email: ogp@columbia.edu

Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies 京都アメリカ大学コンソーシアム

Doshisha University, 2F Fusokan
Karasuma Higashi-iru, Imadegawa-dori
Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto 602-8580 JAPAN

602-8580
京都市上京区今出川通烏丸東入
同志社大学 扶桑館2F

Tel: 075-251-4995
Tel: (+81-75-251-4995)
Fax: 075-229-6300
Fax: (+81-75-229-6300)
Email: fs2244@columbia.edu