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Plans for going to Japan

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Plans for going to Japan

Postby Casey09 » Wed 01.23.2008 11:06 am

I have plans in the very far future to go to japan. I am currently in High School as a junior, and I'm taking japanese 1 and will take japanese 2. When I go off to college I plan to major in marine biology or zoology and minor in asian studies which will include taking japanese and further my proficiency. I also plan to study abroad for a year while in college. Now the real question I wanted to ask is if anyone knows the type of jobs I could get with a biology(of some kind) major and how willingly they will hire a foreigner, and will studying abroad help with maybe finding a job?
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Kagemaru » Wed 01.23.2008 11:26 am

Too broad a question. Some possible outcomes.

If planning to assume a a bilingual position within Japan?

-Advantage-

If studying abroad in the advent of returning home speaking Japanese on top of your given qualifications?

-Advantage- (Best one from the limited information so far)

If working in your field using only Japanese and living in Japan?

-Disadvantage-

If it's the third you are shooting for (I have a feeling you are), then maybe you are asking yourself the wrong question. How about this;

"What do I have/or can I obtain, apart from my qualifications that I can outdo a native speaker of Japanese with the same qualifications?"
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby lillemae » Fri 01.25.2008 3:50 pm

I am also interested in finding position in Japan like biologist for some years. Does somebody know kind of recruitment web page?
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby everdream » Fri 01.25.2008 4:58 pm

Answer this question first:
Why would Japan hire foreign workers when there are willing Japanese people who want these jobs?
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Casey09 » Tue 01.29.2008 10:44 am

If you are fluent in Japanese which i plan to be if I'm going to live there. I will speak english as well. That could give a bit of an advantage. I will also hopefully have some experience before going there.
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Dehitay » Tue 01.29.2008 11:40 am

Bilinguancy isn't a requirement for a biologist. Foreign biologists are also more hassle to take care of than native ones. What everdream was implying was you'll have to be a significantly better biologist than anybody else the company plans to hire and be able to do anything they can if you want to get the position in Japan.
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Tue 01.29.2008 5:22 pm

Casey09 wrote:
If you are fluent in Japanese which i plan to be if I'm going to live there. I will speak english as well. That could give a bit of an advantage. I will also hopefully have some experience before going there.


Your Japanese will never be as good as a native speaker, no matter how long you study, and you will never have the acquired cultural understanding of Japan that a native Japanese has. These two things will always work against you if you're attempting to get a job that is not English-specific.
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby OitaFish » Thu 01.31.2008 8:21 pm

I don't know specifically about jobs in marine biology but I would think that Japan must do a lot of that kind of stuff. Studying abroad will help you if it is Japan that you studied in. I think the 2 biggest things that make companies in Japan reluctant to hire foreigners are language (the better you are in Japanese, the less a concern this is), and concerns about the foreigner's commitment to staying in Japan. In Japan, people don't jump around from job to job. Companies don't want to hire people if they know in 3 or 5 or even 10 years, that person will want to quit and go back to their home country.

It sounds like you have a pretty good plan for getting to Japan. Here is a very good thread on a different forum about how another person did what you are trying to do (although in a different field). He planned it out and it took him about 10 years. I think having a plan like this (or yours) is essential.

Also, another route that I heard of was a guy just out of college came to Japan and taught English for a few years. Then he returned to his home country (Australia) and worked for a few years in his chosen field (finance/banking), gaining experience. Once he had enough experience, he was able to get a job in Japan in his chosen line of work. I like this approach because he was able to give living in Japan a trial run when he was teaching English. I think prospective employers like it too because they see that he has lived in Japan before and knows what it is like. Many people move here and find it is not what they expected and end up regretting the move.
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Nibble » Thu 01.31.2008 8:58 pm

Before asking whether or not you can find permanent employment in Japan in your field of choice, it is important to ask yourself if you really think you will want to live there for the rest of your life, or even for more than a few years. Why do you want to live in Japan? What makes it better than wherever you live now? How much do you know about what life is really like there?
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby chikara » Thu 01.31.2008 9:06 pm

OitaFish wrote:
I don't know specifically about jobs in marine biology but I would think that Japan must do a lot of that kind of stuff. .....

Their extensive research into the larger cetaceans has certainly been in the news in this country a lot lately.
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Tesu » Fri 02.01.2008 8:54 am

OitaFish wrote:
Also, another route that I heard of was a guy just out of college came to Japan and taught English for a few years. Then he returned to his home country (Australia) and worked for a few years in his chosen field (finance/banking), gaining experience. Once he had enough experience, he was able to get a job in Japan in his chosen line of work.


Sadly, neither of your two examples or at all similar to what the OP wants to do, for one reason. That is, they were both in the finance industry, which is a totally different kettle of fish.

I myself work in an investment bank in Tokyo, and I found the job here with no experience and not much Japanese ability. In an investment bank everyone speaks English, as its required for communicating with the rest of the world. In the immediate group of people I work with now, out of 12, only one is Japanese. And he spent most his life in the US, so speaks English as well as I do.

Getting into a field that has no English requirement is exceptionally different, and I would assume requires not only fluent Japanese, but a lot of experience in the field (which would probably need to be got from your home country).

Nearly all foreigners I meet in Tokyo are either Teachers, Students, IT people, recruiters or people in finance. I can't remember ever meeting a foreigner here that is not in one of those categories....
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Mike Cash » Fri 02.01.2008 10:05 am

Tesu wrote:
OitaFish wrote:
Getting into a field that has no English requirement is exceptionally different, and I would assume requires not only fluent Japanese, but a lot of experience in the field (which would probably need to be got from your home country).


And a thick skin, if my experience is any guide.

Nearly all foreigners I meet in Tokyo are either Teachers, Students, IT people, recruiters or people in finance. I can't remember ever meeting a foreigner here that is not in one of those categories....


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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby OitaFish » Fri 02.01.2008 10:32 am

Experience (with a proven track record), proficiency of language, thick skin, and a reason to stay in Japan are all very helpful.

I'd also add that Japan is bigger than Tokyo and I believe that it is possible -- but not easy -- to find jobs in fields other than teaching, IT, finance, or recruiting. I am an engineer. It took me 5 years to find my current job.
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby enji » Sat 02.02.2008 10:44 am

I'm doing Biology right now in university, and what I have in mind is to apply for the Monbukagakusho scholarship to do my post-grad studies in Japan. I think it's a good chance to know the research environment in Japan since I heard the Japanese have a strict hierachy system in the lab. This is if you intend to go into research. :)
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RE: Plans for going to Japan

Postby Tesu » Sat 02.02.2008 12:53 pm

OitaFish wrote:
Experience (with a proven track record), proficiency of language, thick skin, and a reason to stay in Japan are all very helpful.

I'd also add that Japan is bigger than Tokyo and I believe that it is possible -- but not easy -- to find jobs in fields other than teaching, IT, finance, or recruiting. I am an engineer. It took me 5 years to find my current job.


An "engineer" you say? What exactly are you engineering? Presumably its technology related then? (ie, you are one in the five groups I mentioned above)

Admittedly though, I happened to meet a guy tonight in Ikebukuro who ran his own business here doing nothing of the above, so its possible I guess. Maybe the OP could start his own business here for what it is he wants to do.

Mike Cash wrote:Maybe we'll have a chance to shake hands someday and you'll no longer be able to say that.


I sincerely hope so :)
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