Henna Valkama, MSc in Modern Japanese Studies, 2009-2010

After completing my MSc in Modern Japanese Studies at the Nissan Institute I got a job in Japan at the Tokyo headquarter of IHI, a large Japanese manufacturing company. I was a buyer and did business with major Japanese companies on a daily basis, using Japanese.

I left Japan after a year and relocated to Helsinki, Finland where I currently work as the Marketing Manager of a tourism-related company which organises tours, specialist visits etc targeted at Japanese customers. I mainly use Japanese in my job.

Justin Fitzpatrick, MSc in Modern Japanese Studies, 2009-2010

After graduating from Oxford I completed my Masters in Finance at the London Business School (LBS), during which time I worked for a London-based venture capital fund. After graduating from LBS I founded the London office for a US company that provides real-time foreign news analysis, and launched its product in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Currently, I'm the COO/CFO of Duedil (www.duedil.com), the best source of information on UK and Irish businesses, where I'm responsible for all commercial, operational and financial aspects of the company.

Justin also earned the award of Distinction for his MSc and was the winner of the Arthur Stockwin Best Dissertation Prize.

Sam Copley, MSc in Modern Japanese Studies, 2010-2011

After completing my studies in Oxford, I moved to Paris to work as a journalist and editor for a number of publications and a translator (Japanese/French/English) for a luxury goods company. In April 2013, on behalf of the Centre de Recherche et de Documentation sur l'Océanie in Marseille, I will travel to a remote region of the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, where I will live for a year with a tribe as a research assistant to an anthropologist. I hope to be the first Brit to enter this particular region. My time at Oxford armed me with both the language and research skills necessary to succeed in my chosen professional fields.

Brett Clancy, MSc in Modern Japanese Studies, 2010-2011

After graduating from the MSc in Modern Japanese Studies course I returned to Tokyo to run a real estate and venture capital investment fund. In addition, I am the professor of corporate finance on the Rikkyo University MBA program.

At the Nissan Institute I took the politics and economics modules and, through them, increased substantially my knowledge of Japan’s political structure and economic history. Such knowledge is of considerable help both in providing depth to my own financial teaching and also in deciphering some of the idiosyncrasies of Japanese business life. I highly recommend the course to anyone who has an interest in Japan or Japanese business.

As part of the MSc degree I wrote a dissertation examining a recent case of bank failure in Japan. A couple of years later, after much editing and revising, the dissertation was published as an academic article in the Social Science Japan Journal, Volume 17, Number 2, Summer 2014 under the title 'Lending to Lemons'. Having not been published before, I found the process of getting from dissertation to article both challenging and fascinating and, finally, very rewarding. This too I recommend to students who would like to do something constructive with their dissertations after graduating.

Brett also earned the award of Distinction for his MSc and was the winner of the Arthur Stockwin Best Dissertation Prize.


Yuuki Shigemoto, MSc in Modern Japanese Studies, 2011-2012

I am currently a visiting Scholar at BKC Research Organization of Social Science / Research Associate at Design Management Lab, Ritsumeikan University (Japan): PhD in Engineering (2013-2016) at the Institute for Manufacturing, University of Cambridge.

Learning at Oxford was challenging, but a greatly interesting and encouraging experience for me.  The course provided me with a wide range of knowledge concerning modern Japan, and I was particularly attracted by diversified views of people from all over the world to Japan where I come from.  The study at the university expanded my views to the world and pushed me to get on to a PhD course at Cambridge University.  I am sure that Oxford is a great place to try your best towards a brighter future.


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