November 2010 Archives

"Whip it"--Skater girl!


If you ask me what is one important thing in my life that has shaped me? I would say...SPORT for sure! It is a significant part of who I am, and the thing I would not function well if I miss out!

Home away from home


Salam Blog readers,
Our blog topic this week is: "Culturally Diverse You." As you can imagine, this is a huge subject and I can talk forever about this, but I will try my best to keep this blog as short as I can :)

Just TRI


Life is simple: Swim, bike, run, eat, sleep (repeat).

But what about graduate school?



Hi everyone!
Last Saturday we had the first snowfall in Minnesota! We had about 7 inches (17.8 centimeters!) of snow where I live. Despite the snowstorm, I ventured out to the mall with my nephew and my cousin who I had promised to take to the mall last Saturday! Fun times:)
Today I want to talk about the multidimensionality of my experience as a graduate student at the University of Minnesota. I hope some of this helps you to get a glimpse of my opinion about the cultural diversity of the graduate student body at the U of M.
As an international student who has lived in the United States for six years, there are many ways that I define myself, and some of these may seem contradictory. However, If I had to choose one way to define myself I would say I am an African student. I think African student defines not only who I am physically but also my values, my lifestyle, and my academic interests. For example, I believe in the importance of humility and gratitude, I shop in both American and African grocery stores, and my academic interests are infectious disease prevention and health behavior in developing countries. There are a plethora of academic courses, presentations, and community activities that address these topics at the U and especially at the School of Public Health.

What do you answer when someone ask you, "who are you?"

When I was in Japan, I've never answered, "I'm Japanese" because all people around me were Japanese! haha

Now, I often say "I'm Japanese" or "I'm an M.Ed. student in HRD" to introduce myself.

Being an international student changed my answer.
But I realized that some characteristics of mine haven't changed, and these may be fundamental elements that consist of Kyoko Yamada.

An exclusive "insider" insight ;)


Hey everyone,
I realize that a lot of people are not very familiar with what it is I actually study. So I'll try in this blog to give you guys an exclusive "insider" insight on my world of Public Policy at the U of M :P


Welcome to the "International Education" Field!


Hello Everyone!

Maybe you already know that the University of Minnesota has good reputation in its Carlson School of Management, Law School, Medical School, etc. But do you know that the U also provides competitive educational programs for students and scholars? Since I'm currently doing my Master degree in one of the educational programs, I would strongly recommend you to pursue your study in this field if you really feel like "making a difference" in the education field.

"So what do you study?"


"I'm in social psychology."

"That is like, so cool."

"Why, thank y..."

", like, can you tell what I'm thinking right now?"

"Um, no, I'm not a..."

"...but you're analyzing me!"

"No, I'm not. Like I said, I do social psychology."

"Wow, you're, like, making me feel so self-aware right now."



Hi everyone:)
Thanks for coming back to my blog this week. Last week it was the Halloween holiday and I realized it was the first one since I have been in the United States that it hadn't snowed. I can't wait for it to snow.

Today I want to talk to you about my program. I am in the Epidemiology Master's of Public Health program. It is one of the more popular programs at the School of Public Health here at the University of Minnesota. I really like the program because it has met all my expectations so far. I chose to join the program at the U of M because the School of Public Health is ranked in the top 10 in the country by the U.S. News & World Report.
What is Public Health? Watch Video

New friend: "What is your major?"

Me: "Human Resource Development (HRD)."

New friend: "That sounds interesting.... By the way, what is it?"

Even though we are students at the U, we don't know much about other majors but ourselves.
You will be asked, "what do you study in your program?", 100 times if you enter the university.

U of M has more than 300 courses, and each one is very unique!
So, listening to stories about other programs is really interesting and sometimes surprising.

Today, I'm very excited to introduce my program, HRD, and to tell you the secrets of it.

Electrical Engineering


What to say......very tough school, for very tough guys!

Electrical engineering is more than electrical circuits or electrical devices. It is Math, and COMPLETE understanding of how electronic devices works. We have many Math courses, because it is very important having a good Mathematical background in order to succeed with your studies.

Often, we share courses with students from other Engineering departments. The location of classes can be in a different department than yours. For example, you could attend classes at the new STSS building. This department is awesome!

If you will ever think to enroll to an Engineering School, my first recommendation is to come here at the University of Minnesota. The Engineering school is very good. My second recommendation is to study very hard since the beginning. It is always the best thing to do!

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