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EKU graduate Brendan Kirwan finds success thanks to his Certificate in Japanese Conversation and Culture!

Brendan Kirwan

EKU BA Brendan Kirwan graduated in Fall 2016 with Cum Laude honors and a Certificate in Japanese Conversation and Culture.  It turns out his studies in Japanese gave him the edge over the competition:

      "To say that learning the Japanese language helped me get my current job would be a huge understatement. Like many college graduates I started applying to different companies soon after graduation to try and get my first full-time professional job. A new graduate straight out of college with no professional work experience is a difficult sell to many companies. The job search process was frustrating as each application I sent in either got no reply, or a rejection. Then I met with a Japanese recruitment agency and worked with them to find a job. I went to three interviews that were all conducted in 50% Japanese and 50% English. on my third company attempt I landed a job as an "Electrical Design Technician" for a Japanese robotics company. With this position I am learning how industrial machines are designed and made. The position includes computer coding, wiring robots, and being a liaison between clients and my company. I am being trained by native Japanese engineers who speak very little English.  Because of this, I communicate in Japanese every day.

          The fact that I am a native English speaker and also speak Japanese has put me in a position to move up in my company. The company is planning on hiring more American natives who will be assembling the industrial machines. Speaking Japanese is a rare and valued skill in Japanese companies. Due to my ability to speak Japanese, I will be the person training the new employees and translating communication between the Japanese Robotic Engineers and the new American employees.

          I can say with confidence that the main reason that I, a psychology major with virtually no professional work experience, is now programming industrial machines and training others to build them; is due to my studies of the Japanese language."

Published on March 30, 2018

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