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Testimonials

The following testimonials represent the views of a broad range of Asian Studies students.

Parvinder Dhariwal

I thoroughly enjoyed taking courses in the Asian Studies program at KPU. The courses include a variety of innovative teaching methods and resources such as the inclusion of films, self-reflective texts and many discussions that allow for both individual and collaborative learning. This program not only made my BA experience a memorable one, but also paved the way towards many academic and professional opportunities. I was also able to connect what I had learned in the program to explore opportunities with the South Asian community at large through events and volunteer positions. By taking a wide range of courses, I was able to gain a strong foundation in South Asian culture, society and religion, which allowed me to pursue a MA in the same field at UBC and later teach courses in the area of South Asian Studies. Being a part of Asian studies program at KPU has been a very rewarding experience for me, a program that I would highly recommend to all students.


JR Guzon

I have nothing but positive things to say about my experience in KPU's Asian Studies program. Not only have I been able to deepen my understanding of East Asian culture and history, but my academic writing and presentation skills have also dramatically improved over the years. I think students will also appreciate the multidisciplinary aspect of the program; you can create your own focus shaped around your specific interests. Also, I can easily say that the faculty are incredibly passionate and encouraging; I owe a lot of my success to their support in and out of class.


Suzanne Bazso

I took "Religions of India" with Kamala Nayar at KPU as an elective course, and enjoyed it so much that I ended up receiving a minor in Asian Studies. I found the classes to be so engaging and interesting especially because I had zero previous knowledge about Asian culture and history.  I am extremely grateful for my minor in Asia Studies.  Since graduating, my career has taken me to Japan for 15 months to work in theater.  My course on "Japanese Culture Through Film" with Arthur Bailey really came in handy. The course prepared me for a different working environment. It would have been quite a shock if I hadn't already had an understanding of Japanese work culture before moving.  Since the pandemic, my work in the arts industry has slowed down considerably, so I am currently teaching English online to children and adults in China. My Asian Studies minor not only helped me get the job, but it also has proven very helpful to navigate cultural differences and sensitivities that may arise in conversation. I highly recommend the ASIA courses at KPU. All of the professors are excellent in their areas of expertise, and provided me with valuable cultural knowledge about Asia I never would have known otherwise.


Sherry Kaila

The Asian Studies program at KPU provided me a deep and thorough understanding of the peoples, cultures, economies and political systems across Asia and the globe. While studying, I was with a group of wonderful people who supported, cared, and helped me throughout my undergraduate studies. Whenever I needed it, the KPU professors provided me with excellent support, which helped me develop analytical, communication, and cultural skills. With a minor in Asian Studies, I have enhanced my understanding about Asian culture and communities, and have developed practical skills that complement my career goals in primary education.


Jesse Pottinger

I enrolled in Asian Studies courses in my final year at KPU, partly out of curiosity and partly to satisfy the requirements for my Language and Culture minor. Looking back, I wish I had explored the department earlier. Asian Studies gave me a deeper understanding of a part of the world I came to love through travel, and offered a global perspective on history that our Eurocentric education system tends to overlook. As a Mandarin student, studying Chinese history enhanced my understanding of both the language and culture, and now that I'm graduating with a degree in journalism, I have an interview lined up for a Beijing-based media job in 2021!


Isabelle Tupas

The Asian Studies program at KPU will help students explore the complexities of Asian and North American socioeconomic and political systems, fostering deep understanding for how they function on a domestic and global scale. The rich variety of ASIA courses offered at KPU will not only help students critically examine the intricacies of Asian history and culture, but its implications on human- made processes created to understand and control our positions within society and the world.


James Hills

I initially started taking Asian Studies courses as I was always interested in East Asian culture, particularly with Japan. While these started as electives for my Bachelor of Accounting degree, I came to the decision to get a minor in Asian Studies as well. This is mainly due to the power that the Asian markets now have in our economy and to help differentiate myself from other accounting graduates like myself. While it might not cover everything, the Asian Studies courses have given me a better idea on some of the cultural and social-economic backgrounds of East Asian cultures. Something that could help should I look for work in regions that interact heavily with East Asia.


Sukhmani Dhaliwal

The Asian Studies Department at Kwantlen can be best described as a portal to new histories, cultures, films, foods, teas and ideas. The faculty in the department are passionate about the field and are able to spark interests and discussion with their students. They don't just teach out of textbooks, but from their own experiences. I started as taking one simple elective course and this eventually led to me declaring a Minor in the program. I distinctly remember that these were the courses where I would stay longer after class and continue the discussion with classmates and instructors. The department also helped me learn how to conduct historical research and properly cite sources, which continues to help me today working in the legal field.


Nuvjit Sidhho

As a graduate of Asian Studies at KPU, I have been able to utilize my degree in many aspects of my life. Students at KPU are provided with plenty of opportunities to collaborate with one another and to work with their instructors, allowing for fulfilling university experience. The knowledge and skills that gain through Asian Studies courses has enabled me to adapt easily to living and working in Japan. Thanks to my educational background, I have also been afforded certain opportunities in my workplace, such as developing curriculum pertaining to Japanese history and culture or assisting with language translation.


Aaron Throness

The BA Asian Studies program at KPU is blessed not only with a diverse array of courses that appeal to a wide range of topical, geographical, and temporal interests, but also with a team of dedicated and inspiring instructors. They look out for their students through every step of their educational and vocational journeys, from writing essays and applying for scholarships to career-searching and network-building. During the years I spent in the program, my instructors consistently mentored me and fostered my passion for Chinese history, and indeed laid the foundation for my current graduate school career. They helped me hone my academic skills, nurtured my intellectual growth, and motivated me to consistently strive for success both in and out of the classroom. As I look toward furthering my academic pursuits to the doctoral level and beyond, I look back with gratitude to the countless hours they invested in facilitating my academic aspirations - through the many office conversations had, emails exchanged, and words of wisdom offered. In a word, I attribute my academic growth, vocational progress, and overall success to the personalized guidance and encouragement I received from my instructors in KPU's Asian Studies program. For this, I will be forever thankful!


Jayden Phoenix

My years spent in the Asian Studies department were completely unintentional. I needed a few credits to round out my degree, but found myself so enthralled that before I knew it, I was knee-deep in culture and history. The only logical thing to do was dive in headfirst. With each class, I learned to step back and contemplate the world and my place in it in new ways. Culture and history are important aspects of life to internalize for your own personal growth. You need to separate your own preconceived ideas of what is right and what is wrong because differing ideas and cultures are no less valid, and that's what Asian Studies taught me. I am small and insignificant on the grand scale of the world. What I believe and what I think is important, but is in no way the conviction and resolution in a world filled with valid philosophies and culture. Open your mind. It's a big world. 


Greg Fowler

I started taking Japanese language courses at KPU in the summer of 2009. I enjoyed them so much, I ended up switching degrees to the newly created Asian Studies program. I graduated from KPU in the fall of 2013 after taking nearly all of the Japanese language and culture courses available. These courses prepared me will for applying to the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) program.

Through JET, I moved to Hokkaido in the summer of 2014 to work as an assistant language teacher (ALT) at elementary and junior high schools in a small rural town of about 4,000 people. The two years that I spent in Japan were a blast. I made many memories with the extremely kind and welcoming townspeople. I was also able yo see much of Hokkaido and quite a bit of the rest of Japan during my vacation time.

Upon returning to Canada in the summer of 2016, I applied to UBC to get my teaching degree. I received my teaching license in 2019. I have been working as a public high school teacher ever since.