Anne Sciortino — 1989 Master of Education
Which campus did you attend?
What was the most memorable thing(s) about TUJ from when you were a student?
My time at Temple was busy. If I wasn't working, I was studying during those 2 1/2 years. I chose Temple because after careful consideration I decided the best way for me to absorb what I needed in terms of Teaching English as a Second Language was to be a student of languages (Japanese), a student studying TESOL methods and a teacher of TESOL all at the same time. That way I could try out what I was learning right away and see how well - or not - it worked. It was very intense. It was also a lot of fun! I made some good friends from study groups and projects; from classes shared. We may have lost touch but I still remember them with fondness and hope they too are doing well.
I also found out how important it is to continue studying ANYTHING that interests you as it will keep your brain young and flexible. This proved to be an excellent argument for later on taking some Continuing Education courses such as wine appreciation, voice, interior design and more!
How has the education you received at TUJ been helping you in your career or your life in general?
Temple has proved to be a good connection into the teaching community. This was especially helpful when I changed my job and moved from Kansai to Tokyo. Temple gave me opportunities to return to 'school' and learn new things just for fun. I have also gone to a number of the lectures sponsored by the Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies which goes back to what I said earlier. We are or should be thinking people - ideas can change the world. If even just our small part of it is seen differently something good can happen.
Looking at TUJ now, what do you think has changed or stayed the same at TUJ since your student days?
Back then we of the Master's program were creatures of the night! We spent our days spread across Kansai doing various jobs in many different places and our nights at Temple. I worked a few blocks from Temple and used to walk through the rose garden in Nakanoshima in the early evening. I enjoyed many a sunset on my way to class. Although Temple had a definite location most of us could only get there in the evening or on the weekend when we had seminars. Hanging out in the library was a distant dream! Nowadays with a sizable campus there is space for all kinds of things that we didn't have, like: a cafeteria, a nice BIG library, a student centre. Students can come to Temple with their computer and find a comfortable place to work on the current paper or project. It's a nice change. Back then I had to get permission from my boss to use the computer at work in the evening after official working hours since at that time I DID NOT HAVE A COMPUTER! Fortunately my boss at that time was happy to see any of his staff further their qualifications.
How do you see the future of TUJ?
Where will the future take us? Well, more programs is the obvious answer. We have a lot of business related programs now - useful in their place but I think we could branch out a bit more. I would like to see more cultural classes being offered. How about some famous author lectures on a weekend now and then? There seem to be quite a few well known people who visit Japan for one reason or another. If they are already here perhaps we can arrange for them to drop by Temple. A school is defined by the quality of ideas that roll through the classrooms as well as the halls. By bringing in people from quite different walks of life now and then we open up endless possibilities for our tomorrows. Isn't that what learning is all about?
(Posted in November 2012)