$2,000 Scholarship Helps Shoreline Student Study Abroad in Japan

Jennifer Brown sitting on Shoreline Community College Campus
Jennifer Brown received a Gilman Scholarship for Fall 2019
Gilman Scholarship logo

Right now, Jennifer Brown is living and learning in Tokyo, Japan, thanks in part to a $2,000 scholarship from the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, a U.S. Department of State program. She’ll stay there all of fall quarter as part of a study abroad program, learning Japanese language and culture, creative writing, and digital photography.

Her interest in Japan, like that of many other people, began with the anime series she watched as a child, and continued into a fascination with video games. Now, she stays engaged with the culture in many ways, including attending lectures and serving as an assistant manager at SakuraCon, an anime convention held annually in Seattle.

Traditional Japanese paper lanterns light up a small lane full of shops in Tokyo.
Photo by Satoshi Hiroyama

Jennifer, a first-generation Mexican-American, grew up in San Diego. She was drawn to Seattle because of its cultural and economic connections to Japan. By earning a dual degree in Fine Arts and Japanese, she someday hopes to work for a company like Nintendo, whose U.S. headquarters are located near Seattle. She is also considering working in Japan, an option that she’ll learn about during her 10 weeks living in Tokyo.

After she arrived in Seattle, she began taking Japanese language classes at Shoreline with Mayumi Steinmetz. “I’ve gotten to really hone my language skills with her. She’s seen me since I couldn’t even muster one or two words to now, making conversation. If I could take my whole four years of Japanese with her, I would.”

Shibuya crossing at night, one of the busiest intersections in Tokyo, lined by tall buildings with large billboard advertisements and bright neon lights.

The Gilman Scholarship is named for late congressman Benjamin A. Gilman of New York, who supported the program’s establishment and served as Chair of the House Foreign Relations Committee. According to the program’s website, “A Gilman Scholarship enables American students to gain proficiency in diverse languages and cultures, skills that are critically important to their academic and career development.”

To learn about scholarships and study abroad opportunities at Shoreline, contact studyabroad@shoreline.edu or stop by the International Education department in room 9302.


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