A WCCCSA Affiliate Program operated by Green River College

COVID-19 Update: COVID-19 vaccines and/or negative PCR tests are no longer required to enter Japan. It is recommended, but not mandatory, to have two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to participate in this program.

Dates & Deadlines

  • Application Deadline: Friday, June 2, 2023
  • Deposit Due ($450): within two weeks of your application (non-refundable)
  • Balance of Program Fees Due: Friday, June 23, 2023
  • Tuition Due: Check your campus’s calendar
  • Program Dates: September 25 – December 5, 2023

Contact your WCCCSA Campus Coordinator for more information about spending the fall in Japan. Or find out more by visiting the Green River College Study Abroad website or contact Megan Swanson at 253-931-6845 or mswanson@greenriver.edu.

Program Documents

About the Program


In this ten-week program to Tokyo/Hachioji, Japan, you will join of a cohort group of up to 30 students from Green River College and other community colleges in Washington state.

Japan offers a rich environment of arts, culture, and history where centuries-old traditions exist in contrast with ultra-modern life-styles. In Tokyo, you will encounter sumo wrestling, Kabuki Theater, ancient castles, and temples dating back to the days of Samurai warriors. In contrast, you will find the modern side of Tokyo including trendy and eccentric street fashions in the Harajuku district, the latest in high technology, electronics, and gadgetry, as well as anime in a city that never sleeps. Tokyo has many faces and each neighborhood is unique with its own distinct character. From the elegant Ginza shopping district, historical Asakusa, to the trend-setting Harajuku and Shinjuku wards, the fascination is endless.

Campus & Classrooms

While in Japan, you will be hosted by Kogakuin University and attend your classes on their campus. The university focuses on engineering and architecture to first and second year students. Hachioji is known for being a college town, boasting many large colleges and universities. It is a scenic area surrounded on three sides by mountains, forming the Hachioji Basin. It’s easily accessible by bus or train, providing an ideal location for student life and exploration.


While at Kogakuin University, Hachioji Campus, you will live in shared apartments contracted by the university. These are small Japanese-style lodgings with futons, a kitchenette, and a bathroom. You will share a two-bedroom apartment with three other students in the group. Housing accommodations are subject to change depending on availability (alternate arrangements provided).

In the town of Hachioji there are many food options, including grocery stores and familiar chains such as Starbucks and Burger King. Pizza is widely available or try a French-style pastry shop for delicious baked goods. While Japan has the reputation of being expensive, you can make the same inexpensive and everyday food choices that are enjoyed by the local population. Small noodle shops offer delicious and very reasonably priced dishes while others offer Tempura, Sushi, and Bento-box lunches. Japanese cuisine is healthy and offers a great deal of variety.


Program costs include airfare and transfers from/to Haneda airport. Japan has one of the most efficient and impressive mass transportation systems in the world. High speed bullet and local trains connect to subways and buses providing speedy and convenient access to all major points of interest. You will have ample opportunity to explore all that nearby Tokyo has to offer and make visits to the port city of Yokohama.

Faculty & Courses

This is an academic-focused study program so you must carry a three-course, 15-credit load, and are expected to fully participate in all activities.

Patrick Navin, an experienced Green River faculty member, will lead the group and teach the curriculum along with local faculty members. Marcie Sims, another Green River instructor, will teach an online Creative Writing class. Local program managers will serve as hosts and advisors and will arrange for Japanese students to serve as campus attendants. These students will assist with language, customs, and cultural adjustments, and city exploration. It is a great opportunity to practice their English, so everybody wins!

English: Creative Writing – 5 credits (online)

A discussion and application of the principles and techniques used in writing fiction and poetry. Development of analytical skills to enhance the writing of fiction and poetry. Students will write fiction and poetry and peer review each other’s work.

Art: Beginning Digital Photography – 5 credits (in-person)

Introduces the aesthetic and technical theories and techniques of digital photography. Through classroom instruction and fieldtrips to exciting Tokyo neighborhoods such as Harajuku, Shibuya, Shinjuku, and Ueno, you will learn about camera and lens operation, memory cards, file formats, exposure, white balance, composition, lighting, creativity and image editing software. You will also visit various Tokyo photography museums and galleries. The course requires a digital camera and laptop computer. Rental cameras may be available through the GRC photo department.

Humanities: Japanese Language and Culture – 5 credits (in-person)

Offers an introduction to Japanese society and culture by examining its history, people, and traditions. You will engage in critical discussions about the differences between American and Japanese cultures. This course facilitates student orientation to Japan and will provide essential conversational Japanese language skills needed to communicate in basic daily life. Cultural and language activities may include welcome, Halloween, and sayonara parties, a game night, field trips to shrines, temples, museums, pop culture centers and neighborhoods, a school festival, sports festival, food, movies, music, and daily interaction with your Japanese student campus attendant friends.


The program includes cultural activities and several organized field trips which may include:

  • Harajuku: Meiji Shinto-Jingu (Shrine), Yoyogi Park, Takeshita-Dori (Avenue) and Omotesando Street
  • Shibuya
  • Shinjuku and Shinjuku Koen Photography galleries
  • Asakusa: Senso-Ji (Shine), Asakusa-Jinja (Temple) and strolling Nakamise-dori (Avenue)
  • Ueno: Ueno-Koen, Tokyo National Museum and the Ameya-Yokocho Ebisu: Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Dainen-Ji
  • Edo Tokyo Museum
  • Mt. Takao, Kamakura

Additional field trips are optional and may require a separate fee. There will also be opportunities to do your own exploring using convenient public transport or a tour specialist. Optional activities may include: Hakone, Tokyo Disneyland, Hot Springs, Public Hot Bath, Theater Performance, and Martial Arts Introduction.

Cost: $6975

Optional land-only package: $6075


  • Round trip group airfare on program dates Seattle/Tokyo/Seattle
  • Group transfers to/from Haneda airport
  • Student housing accommodations while at Kogakuin University
  • Arrival and farewell parties
  • Some cultural activities and excursions
  • Pre-departure and arrival orientations
  • Student basic medical insurance

Not Included

  • College tuition and books
  • Passport and visa fees
  • Meals
  • Curriculum activities admissions
  • Local transportation
  • Personal and entertainment expenses/independent travel expenses
  • Anything not specified as included in the program