Karin Uzawa '20 Worked as an Assistant Language Teacher in Fujieda City, Shizuoka Prefecture

karin uzawa headshot
Fujieda City, Shizuoka Prefecture
B.A. in Group Language (Japanese and Linguistics), Education minor
From Berkeley, CA

Karin Uzawa ’20 is finishing up her position as an Assistant Language Teacher in the JET Programme in Fujieda City, Shizuoka Prefecture, and is seeking new opportunities in either Japan or the United States.

As a second generation Japanese-American, Uzawa has been surrounded by the Japanese language and culture from the beginning. Because she was not completely fluent in Japanese and could not communicate well with her Japanese-speaking grandparents and relatives, she endeavored to take many Japanese classes while at Oxy. In her sophomore year, she discovered the Group Language major, which allows students to combine two languages or one language plus linguistics as their study in college. She joined the Japanese Cultural Organization (JCO) club on campus and worked towards understanding her Japanese heritage.

Professors Motoko Ezaki and Yuki Taylor recruited her to be a Japanese Peer Language Advisor, which boosted her confidence that she could attempt working in Japan. Professor Ezaki wrote her letter of recommendation for the JET Programme.

Professor Bolyanatz inspired her interest in language learning and linguistics, which deepened her interest in teaching English as a Second Language (ESL). Her Introduction to Linguistics class also sparked Uzawa’s interest in socio-linguistics.