Student Voice

Rina Abe - Hospitality and Tourism

As I thought of going to a community college in Hawai‘i, I was really worried about my language skills. I was thinking if I enter a community college that has a lot of Japanese students, I wouldn’t be able to focus on learning English. Also, I heard that the community college on Oahu has a lot of students from Japan and that’s why I chose Kaua‘i CC. Now, I can focus on my major, and enjoy Kaua‘i life with local people.

My major is Hospitality and Tourism. Since I changed my mind to transfer to UH West Oahu, I had to take required classes such as Statistics, Microeconomics and Ethnobotany. These subjects are very difficult for me, but, I have a dream which is to work in Hospitality and Tourism industry. Also, Kaua‘i CC has a lot of interesting subjects such as Hula and Yoga class. So, you can choose any subject what you want to study.

It was very fun but really difficult to adjust to a new environment. As an international student from Japan, I had more material to study than local students. For me, I studied several things every day to get used to school and Kaua‘i life because it was different from Japan. So the first semester was really difficult and it felt like a day went by fast. However, looking back now, it was a very fulfilling semester. Fortunately, I have wonderful local friends and teachers, so they were able to help me if I have trouble. And I went out with my local friends on my day off. We went to a lot of beaches and hikes. Sometimes, we held a beach party on our favorite beach. As above, I spend a very rich day every day.

Firstly, you may find Kaua‘i life confusing because Kaua‘i is not like Japan. So if you have trouble with your study or Kaua‘i life, you should ask your local friends or Kaua‘i CC teachers. Secondly, don’t be afraid to talk with people around you. When you talk with people, you shouldn’t have to care about your mistakes because you learn from your mistakes. We can support you as an “ohana.” Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and be strong.

I’m loving everything about Kaua‘i. The people here are so kind to me, and I enjoy the vast nature of this island. The time spent on Kaua‘i is special because I can’t have this life in Japan. For example, my friends and I went to the beach because we didn’t have anything to do. A positive of living on Kaua‘i is living a stress-free life, but students need to have a little stress to study better. So I have to be careful of relaxing too much.