Study Abroad


Fall Quarter 2017
September 25 - December 5, 2017
15 college credits

This program is limited to 30 students. Apply now to reserve your place.

Contact Cindy Card (253) 833-9111 ext. 2160

You can be part of a cohort group of 20-30 students from Green River College and other Colleges to live and study in Tokyo, Japan in this 10-week study abroad program. Earn 15 Green River transfer credits in Digital Photography, Art Appreciation and Japanese Culture.

Experienced Community College faculty members will lead the group and teach the curriculum along with local Japanese faculty members. Japanese students will assist as language partners and to help with customs and cultural adjustments. 

Japan offers a rich environment of arts, culture and history where centuries-old traditions exist in contrast with ultra-modern life-styles. Experience Sumo wrestling, Kabuki Theater, ancient castles and temples dating back to the days of the Samurai warriors. How about some trendy Tokyo street fashions (wild and crazy?) in the Harajuku district, the latest in high technology, electronics and gadgetry, anime, and a city that never sleeps. Tokyo has many faces and each neighborhood is unique and has its own distinct character. From the elegant Ginza shopping district, historical Asakusa, to the trend-setting Harajuku and Shinjuku wards, the fascination is endless.

Check out the photos from the Japan Study Abroad program

Visit Alton Cao's Japan travel blog: 少年グランジ shonengrunge

Visit Andrew Madison's blog about Japan: Sushi House in the Sky




Green River College tution is not included in the program fee.

Academic Program:
This is a study program. Students must carry a 15-credit load and are expected to fully participate in all class activities. The courses offered are specially chosen to give participants interesting, valuable and relevant instruction that exposes students to the cultural, history, fauna and geological differences that are unique to Japan.


Art Appreciation (5 credits) gives understanding of artworks and styles across time and cultures of the world,with a special emphasis on Japanese art. Introduces the basic elements and principles of art and the media with which artists create through themes such as visual culture, entertainment, technology, nature, mortality and immortality, mind and body, sexuality, and power and politics. Explicit connections between art and daily life will be examined and suggestions for interacting with it will be provided. Tokyo offers an extremely large number of art museums and galleries, which will compliment our classroom education.

Beginning Digital Photography (5 credits) introduces the aesthetic and technical theories and techniques of digital photography. Through classroom instruction and fieldtrips to exciting Tokyo neighborhoods such as Harajuku, Akihabara, Shinjuku and Tsukiji fish market, you will learn about camera and lens operation, memory cards, file formats, exposure, white balance, composition, lighting, crealivity and image editing software. You will also visit various Tokyo photography museums and galleries. The course requires a digital camera and laptop computer.

Peoples of the World-Japanese Language and Culture (5 credits) 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 courses are specially chosen to give interesting, valuable and relevant instruction that exposes students to the cultural, history, fauna and geological differences that are unique to Japan.


Patrick Navin - Green River College Faculty - Fine Arts Division



While in Japan, the group will be hosted by Kogakuin University, at the Hachioji campus, a university focused on teaching engineering and architecture to first and second year students.

Hachioji is known as 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 about 40 minutes west of downtown Tokyo and is easily accessible by bus or train, providing an ideal location for student life and exploration.

downtown tokyo


While at Kogakuin University, students will be accommodated in shared apartments contracted by the university. These are small Japanese-style lodgings with futons, a kitchenette and bathroom. Students will generally share an apartment with other students in the group. Housing accommodations are subject to change depending on availability (alternate arrangements provided).

Students can find many food choices right at the Hachioji campus, while the town of Jachioji offers many additional 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, one 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.


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

  • Harajuko: Meiji Shinto-Jingu (Shrine), Yoyogi Park, Takeshita-Dori (Avenue) and Omotesando Street
  • Shibuya
  • Shinjuku, Shinjuku Koen, Photgraphy galleries
  • Asakua:  Senso-Ji (Shrine), Asakusa-Jinja (Temple) and strolling Nakamise-dori (Avenue)
  • Ueno:  Ueno-Koen, Tokyo National Museum and teh Ameya-Yokocho
  • Ebisu:  Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Dainen-Ji
  • Roppongi:  Roppongi Hills, Mori Art Museum
  • Akihabara Electric Town
  • Mt. Takao, Kamakura

Additional Optional Activities: Other field trips are optional and may require an additional fee. There will also be plenty of opportunity to do your own exploring using convenient public transport or tour specialists.

Program Fees

Program Fee: $6,290 - includes airfare

Program costs include airfare and transfers to/from Narita airport. 
Land-only option $5,390 (excludes airfare and overseas airport transfers)

A $450 (non-refundable) deposit is required to be paid with your application to hold your place in the program.


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

Not Included:

  • College tuition and books
  • Passport and visa fees
  • Local transportation
  • Meals
  • Curriculum activities admissions
  • Personal and entertainment expenses
  • Independent travel and expenses 
  • US and Japanese airport fees and taxes
  • Anything not specified as included in the program

Financial Aid:
If you are a Green River College student or a student at a sponsoring Washington State Community College, you may be able to use their financial aid to pay program fees. Students wishing to use financial aid must be able to register through their home college for these classes in order to use the money toward the program.  Please check with your Study Abroad Coordinator to determine if you are attending a participating school.  

Scholarship Information:
Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ADSIA) provides scholarships for U.S. undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.


Application Process


Students with a GPA of 2.5 or higher are eligible to apply. Transcripts are required. Minimum age is 18 (17 with parental permission).

You do not need to be a current Green River College student to participate in this program.

There is a capacity limit of 30 students on this program. This is on a "first-come, first-serve" basis and there are no guarantees that a student will be able to participate if the program is full. APPLY EARLY TO HOLD YOUR SPACE.

Complete and sign the following forms: Program Application , Agreement and Release, Medical History, Medical Authorization and Release of Information.  Participants under the age of 18 must also have their parents/guardians sign the application and accompanying forms. Submit all forms along with a $450 non-refundable deposit to Cindy Card, Study Abroad Programs, Green River College, 12401 SE 320th St., Auburn, WA, 98092. Checks should be made payable to "Green River College". Incomplete or illegible application packets will not be processed.

Note: Green River students and students attending other sponsoring Washington State community colleges may need approval through their institution to apply for this program.  Please check with your college's Study Abroad Coordinator to see if a preliminary application is required. 


Coming soon.

 LAND-ONLY OPTION: Participants wishing to make their own travel arrangements separate from the group must request these arrangements at the time of application. Airport transfers are not included in the land-only option. Students must arrive in Tokyo, Japan at the beginning of the program and depart at the end of the program.

FLIGHTS: The presenters and supporters of the program cannot guarantee non-stop flights, service on any particular carrier or date/time changes in the itinerary. Airline tickets will be e-tickets or paper tickets that will be passed out at the airport on the day of departure to participants who have paid in full. Program participants are responsible for securing their own travel documents (passports, visas). Passports must be valid a minimum of 6 months from the date of departure on the program. A photocopy of your passport must be given to Cindy Card as soon as you have it to secure air travel. If you do not currently have a valid passport, apply right away!

For more information please contact:

Cindy Card,
Program Coordinator
Green River College
Phone: 9253) 833-9111, ext. 2160
Fax: (253) 288-3419