DAY 2 (July 31)
Today was the first day of the workshop in Stanford University. On the way there, our bus had some troubles, and the driver said, “It is just steam,” but I was very uneasy. However, we were ok after another bus arrived for us. Our first workshop was very interesting and meaningful. I was really nervous when I met Mr. Ong, but I was soon able to talk freely because he always listened to me with a smile. Also, our mentors were very friendly. When I talked to them, they tried to understand my poor English, and they suggested some new ideas. They encouraged me, so I was able to achieve my goal easily. Today’s main activity was brainstorming to fix problems. We thought about problems in our life, then discussed the problems why, when, where, and how they happen. This work was really hard for me even in Japanese, but we had to use English. Our team wrote down any ideas on Post-It notes, and then asked our mentor what to do by using some vocabulary. That was confusing, but it became a good experience.
I learned the importance of acting right away, so I will try harder tomorrow. (Y.S H1)
“It is just smoke. Stay here.” The bus driver said. On the way to the Stanford, we all felt a little bit tired because of the jet lag. Suddenly, an alarm rang and the bus stopped. We were all surprised and anxious. The bus driver called a rescue truck and we changed to another bus. Mr. Kimura said, “We wanted to surprise Dr.Ong, but we were surprised by the bus driver.” My mind became clear and I felt that I can do anything because we were survivors. At Stanford, Dr.Ong introduced himself and started the program. I was so excited because I wanted to try many things; such as talking with the mentors, asking questions, and growing myself. The most impressive thing for me was the class in the afternoon. Dr.Ong separated us into nine groups and asked us to find some problems in the world and suggest some solutions. In the group, we proposed a lot of problems, but we couldn’t decide on one because all the problems were too big for us. We were very worried about that, but when we asked the mentor, he gave us some great advice. He advised us to think about more details and gave us some examples in America. It was very interesting and our discussion moved smoothly and deeply. I thought it was important for my growth to try asking questions. I am going to try that for the next five days. One accident and one piece of advice made us more interested and intelligent. We cannot imagine the next five days because this first day was really fun. (S.T H1)