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Last week the Bell School welcomed its first students into the Bachelor of Asia-Pacific Affairs, an innovative new dual degree program with Ritsumeikan University in Japan.
This Orientation Week gathering was the first chance for the cohort of students to meet each other and ANU staff, including Christopher Hobson, the program convenor; Bina D’Costa, the Deputy Director for Education in the Bell School; and Satomi Ono, the student engagement coordinator, a member of the Bell School administrative staff who is moving from Canberra to Japan to take up the role.
Together the new students and program staff discussed some of the differences between studying and living in Australia and Japan, and the exciting opportunities open to them through being part of this unique program. These students will now spend their first year at ANU beginning to learn about the Asia-Pacific and many will study Japanese. The students starting at Ritsumeikan begin their academic year in April.
Each year ANU will accept a maximum of 10 students, who will spend their first year studying at ANU, before spending their second and third years studying at Ritsumeikan University in Osaka. They then return to ANU for their fourth and final year.
Ritsumeikan will accept a maximum of 90 students each year, who will spend one year studying at ANU, and will also take ANU courses in Japan, which will be taught by Bell School academics visiting the Osaka campus.
On successful completion of the four year degree, students will graduate with two degrees - a Bachelor of Asia-Pacific Affairs from the ANU, and a Bachelor of Global Liberal Arts from Ritsumeikan University.
The students who are starting at ANU this year all come from different parts of Australia - from Queensland, Tasmania, Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra. Some have studied Japanese previously while some have no experience with the language, yet. Many had visited Japan before and were excited by this unique opportunity to get to know the country (and the region) better and to advance their Japanese language skills.
We would like to congratulate the students and wish them the very best of luck on this new dual degree adventure.
For more information about the degree visit the program page.