- My name is Chimin, and I am 17 years old. I come from Japan, and I have been in Finland as an exchange student for almost three months now. I have to leave soon, which makes me really sad because I would like to stay here for more time.
Why did you choose to come to Finland?
- I am very interested in the Finnish education system. It is of very high quality, and it is free for the students. I want to see for myself how it works and what it is like.
What is the most interesting thing you’ve learned about the Finnish education system?
- The Finnish system is very free and comfortable. During the lessons, you are free to use a computer for example, or eat some snacks. In Japan it is not that way. The Japanese system is very strict. It is like a competition, in which you have to win all the other students. It is very hard because we don’t have any freedom. In Finland we can also craft our own schedules, which is great for the musical students, for example.
How do you spend your time outside of school?
- Sometimes I just hang out with friends, go to the café, or play ice hockey. Ice hockey is very fun and exciting, I learned it here. Other times I’m at home with my host family. We have dinner and talk about normal things, like how everyone’s day was.
If you could meet any person from Finland and spend a day with them, who would you choose?
What will you be taking home to Japan from Finland?
- I am writing a diary every day, and I am planning to publish it as a book about living in Finland for the Japanese people. Back home, I’ll also be giving a presentation in my high school about Finland and my exchange year. Also, I will have to take some tasty Fazer chocolate and some salmiakki (which I don’t like).
Is there something that you want to tell the students of Tiirismaa and Finland, before you go?
- Japan is a very nice country to visit, and I want the students to come to Japan. If they come, please contact me. Finland is a very nice country, and you should be proud of it. I hope I will be back soon, and I’m looking forward to seeing you all again.
Thank you for staying with us these past months, Chimin. We will miss you, and we hope someday you will get to start your own ice hockey team in Tokyo. Good luck with everything, and welcome back anytime.