Okayama University, Japan
During my most recent Co-op placement, I had the opportunity to travel to Okayama University in Japan. As Okayama University hopes to build a good connection with UBC, one of the modes of achieving this connection is through the establishment of an internship program like Forestry Co-op. As a Co-op Project Assistant, my role was to work alongside other Japanese university students in workplaces related to the forestry sector. This included working at a laminated wood products factory, at a pre-cut housing & furniture manufacturer, a biomass recycling company, as well as a private forestry management company. At each of the different companies, the overall objective was to find potential for improvement in the workplace and report these findings back to the manager of the respective area. Through this unique opportunity to live in another country, I gained a perspective a tourist visiting the country would not be able to achieve. As well, I connected with people who were enthusiastic to share their passions with me. I have the Co-op program to thank for this truly unique experience that pushed me out of my comfort zone.