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Ali, Yemen

Ali (Yemen), Sherborne International School, Qatar

Today we are joined by Ali from the Republic of Yemen, who joined the Global BBA program in Fall 2020. Ali, who studied at an international school in Qatar, is taking full advantage of Nisshin campus life, recently joining the volleyball team and partaking in Japanese language exchange classes.

Why did you choose Japan and NUCB for your studies?

I have always been interested in Japanese culture, initially watching TV shows when I was younger and searching for information on the internet. I feel that I have a lot in common with Japanese people, I am a little bit quiet and like to keep to myself, and I like the respectful culture here.

I was looking for business programs taught in English, and there were not many options. Then as I read more about the case method I was instantly hooked. I enjoy the interactive way of learning compared to lectures and exams and NUCB’s teaching methodology is unique in that aspect.  

What has been your favourite class so far?

Without a doubt, it has been Business Negotiation taught by Prof. Denscombe. It has been the class with the most interaction and every week we had a different negotiation aspect. I really like having to work with people from different backgrounds and coming to a consensus. I think learning how to be an expert negotiator will be a skill that will be useful for my future.

Has the cultural adaptation been smooth?

I have lived in Abu Dhabi and I studied my A-Levels at an international school in Qatar. The culture between the Middle East and Japan is very different, but I have had no trouble adapting. In Qatar, we use cars as transportation, so I had to get used to taking trains and buses, and also the way of interacting with people was a small hurdle I had to overcome.

You are a practising Muslim, how do you find living in Nagoya?

Well first of all there are a lot of things I cannot eat, but I have memorized the Japanese for ingredients and how to tell restaurants my dietary requirements. I try to eat healthily which can be easy in Japan, and I recently tried Natto, which I quite liked. I pray 5 times a day and when I don't have lessons, I can go to the Mosque located in central Nagoya.

What clubs are you involved in?

I recently joined the volleyball club. I met a Japanese person who introduced me and I can get by with simple Japanese. The team is welcoming and teaches me a lot as I am a beginner. I currently train around 3-4 times a week, and there are no costs involved.

I have also taken part in the language exchange program in the library. I currently meet a Japanese student where we talk in Japanese and English for around two hours a week. I really want to improve my conversational skills and use what I learn in class and during my self-study on the weekends. My goal is to be fluent in business by graduation and then open up my own business.