Topic: Diary

Diary: 10/18/2012 Thu.

One Young World Summit 2012 Day 1

This is the first day of the summit, but for my mistake, I missed the early morning airplane from JFK to Pittsburgh… I left my room around 5am but failed to change the train at at the station near JFK. That made only 20 minutes delay but resulted in the closed check in.

By the way, there was a pigeon inside the JFK airport. Strange…

I had to take an evening plane and only arrived at Pittsburgh Airport 6:30pm. A service staff picked me and another delegate from Grenada, she also missed her plane and took us to the hotel to stay. She, the delegate of Grenada is the only one delegate from her country, and works as a high school teacher. During the drive to the hotel he explained us about Pittsburgh. Compared to NY, there are not so many train lines and they commonly move by cars. The city seemed very safe and in a quiet mood. Most of the shops has been already closed. Buildings of the town around he river and bridges were beautiful.

After checking in the hotel, I could join the opening party at the large bridge. I talked with 4 or 5 delegates and had a good time. Most of them whom I talked today are designers (one is from France, another one is from Taiwanese, and the other one is a country, I didin’t hear the name well though, in Africa). I talked about my project in Ishinomaki that collaborate with product a designer, and they looked feel interested in, thankfully. I do believe a power of design to solve social problems.

Anyway, the main programs of the summit will start tomorrow. I’m really looking forward.




Diary: 10/17/2012 Wed.

Tomorrow I will move to Pittsburgh and participate in “One Young World Summit 2012” as one of the Japanese delegation, from 10/18-10/22. For some mistake of logistics, I’ve never received any guidance and announcement about details although I many times sent e-mail to the committee and that delay frustrated me so much these days…but anyway my status has been approved, and I can join the summit finally. It must be exciting!

My concern is, I have to work on homework that is due on Monday evening at the hotel of PIttsburgh at night… I finished the homework of Health and Behavior and Quantitative Foundation today, but I also have Environmental Determinant of Health module homework…

明日からピッツバーグのOne Young World Summit 2012に参加してくる。事務局側の不手際なのか、UK本部とのミスコミュニケーションか、Delegatesの中で僕だけなぜか連絡網から漏れてたっぽく、1ヶ月前から何度問い合わせても全然詳細を教えてもらえないという謎展開だったが、どうにか無事参加出来そう。ほんと、ここ数日バタバタヤキモキして大変だった。ダボス会議から派生した若手世代向けのサミットらしい。楽しんでくる。

Diary: 10/16/2012 Tue.

Attended a practicum orientation. The faculty gave us a list of the past students’ practicum, and I found there are so various options of organizations, areas and programs. As I want to choose field oriented practicum and work in a foreign country, I need to research about international organizations and programs. It must be exciting.

Had a second session of language tutor with my friend. This time I supported translating his resume from English to Japanese. Translation is not just a word-for-word translation, we need to edit sentence based on each language and country’s culture and context so that it sounds natural. It was not so easy, but very interesting training.



Diary: 10/15/2012 Mon.

There seems to be a “demographic shift” of our class… someone begin to skip a few classes that seem less attractive for them, others stay there, also, on the exam day morning most of us(sometimes including me) skip morning lectures so as to prepare for the exam in the afternoon. It’s interesting to see cos such phenomena are globally common in university, same as students in Japan. Anyway, it’s natural. Too many lectures and too many homeworks. Sometimes we need a rest, or to manage schedule strategically.

Quantitative Foundation
Today we learned about screening test. Sensitivity and specificity of a screening test is basically trade off, ant we can’t make a test with both of 100%. Also, it is always possible that we may miss false negative people, those who actually have disease but screened as negative(that mean they are regarded as not having disease) without diagnosing their disease and providing with treatment. Of course I know nowhere is a “magic bullet” that detect all patient with disease with 100% sensitivity and specificity. So we should not be overconfident about the result of “scientific” test too much, and should be sensitive about missing case.

U.S. Health care system
Most of classmates who originally attended this lecture seem to move to other cohort’s professor’s lecture, and now there are only about 20 students staying… To be honest, this lecture is hard for me too, and I was almost deciding to skip this lecture, but today finally I felt I am gradually catching up with this module. As I’m unfamiliar with the U.S. health care system, it was hard to understand the reading materials and lectures smoothly, but this time it was not so terrible. I hope I will do well for the rest of the lecture in this class…

Health and Behavior
Today, the lecturer talked about the theory of social support, or social network that is helpful to promote health behavior. Such kind of social factors of public health is exactly what I’m interested in! My last job was also one that aimed to revitalize and strengthen social bind and capital of people living in a disaster area, so I agree with the importance of these ideas. Some classmates said that such theories related to social and environmental factors are too vague and less specific. Yes, it is, but I think we need to be accustomed with these new ways of comprehensive thinking cos today’s public health challenge becoming more and more complex. I wanna study this area more.

I had a workshop with the lecturer and classmates to brush up my plan of research paper. Although it was tough time, thanks to them, I could made my options clear.

Art exhibition of Kikue Miyatake
Today, I found this exhibition by chance when I entered the building to go to another floor. It was so awesome meeting with wonderful arts! Her style seems abstract paintings and I received direct and energetic message from her drawing. Bright and vivid colors arise from bleak and darker ones and their contrast were so beautiful. Surprisingly, she the painter was sitting at the front chair with a clerk, and I talked with them for a while. She also moved from Japan to NY when she was 24 years old, same as me. And, last year she visited north east of Japan too. How thankful time it was..

授業の合間に、ダウンタウンまで下って、Socia Security Cardの申請に行ってきた。やっぱりキャンパス周辺の168thとは雰囲気が違うな。人の交差が活発だ。昨日の夕食で、ニューヨークの街並みの開放感はどこから来るのかという話をしていたのだけど、ビルが高い分歩道・車道に余裕があること、人があらゆる方向に交差していくことが、どうも東京との違いを生み出しているかもしれない、と。一方東京は、小道・脇道の多さが特徴的で、また、人々も最寄り駅に向かって同じ方向へ動く傾向が強い(場所によるが)。東京のせせこましさも、いじらしくてとても愛おしいけど、時に息場を失くしてうろたえてしまう。New Yorkの街は、余計なことを考えなくて済むから、出歩くことが僕の精神衛生上、良い気がする。No one knows me, I know no one there. しかしそれが気楽なのだ。

「思い出すことなど」 病気で倒れていた時期を回顧する漱石。




Diary: 10/14/2012 Sun.

My former teacher at a seminar of the University of Tokyo (actually he’s still teacher for me even after his retirement) came to New York, and had dinner with him and other alumni students at a french restaurant near the Lincoln Center. Whenever I meet him, I fell secure, and cannot help talking about personal matters…

Well, here Columbia is a wonderful place to learn and build my capacity to work as a public health professional. But not only that this one and half year term of staying abroad must be an import “personal” term to think deeply again about myself – identity, worth of living, role in society, relationship with others. Calm down, and walk moderately.








Diary: 10/13/2012 Sat.

Spent most of the day for reading articles and thinking about paper for writing course. I’m thinking to take mental health problems after disaster, and write a review paper(cos it is not feasible to do a new research by myself within a one semester). I couldn’t do well other things such as review of skipped classes, pre-study for next week classes and homeworks… Don’t need to be too nervous but, a little frustrated.


Diary: 10/12/2012 Fri.

Exam finished!!! Now we gonna have two weeks without exams(after that of course there will be…). After the exam today, I talked with a few classmates, and found they had the same feelings as me. Most of exam questions too general, so we were not sure what we’re supposed to answer. Also, every week, we miss the classes in the morning on Friday before the exam, and worried about being behind… Anyway, time is limited. I shouldn’t be a perfectionist who can do everything (pre-reading, study for exams, homeworks and other things) for one week.

At night, I met with one of my classmates at the University of Tokyo Law department in Washington Heights. He came to New York state from this fall and is going to language school to learn English. He seemed suffering his study, and frustrated with troubles with his roommates. I understand what he complaints, but only we can do is to survive here in a foreign country. If he wants to be released from his suffers, he has to brush up his English, and then go up to a higher level class where is better environment. Well, good luck with each other.



Diary: 10/11/2012 Thu.

During the lunch time, there was a general body meeting of a student group “Group for Community Recovery.” As I’m keenly interested in community based researches and actions, their activities seemed quite exciting. I want to take part in as much as possible.

Tomorrow is an exam day. Every week days pass so fast…

ランチオンイベントで、”Group for Community Recovery”というstudent groupの集まりに参加した。興味分野にガチっとはまった活動をしていたので、今後色々と参加してみたいと思う。キャンパス周辺のワシントン・ハイツでも色々な取り組みをやっているそうだ。


Diary: 10/10/2012 Wed.

Today I’ve started working as a language maintenance tutor at Columbia, and met with my counterpart student who wants to speak Japanese. He’s MBA student, 4 or 5 years older than me, and really good at Japanese(I felt I don’t need to ‘teach’ anymore!). Tutoring session is mainly for general speaking. We decided to meet once a week and have a session to take one or two article or essay to discuss each time.

As this is the first time, He and I self-introduced with each other, and surprisingly, he’s friend with one of my friends in Ogatsu, Ishinomaki, where I worked last year! Awesome! He went to Ogatsu and participated in volunteer activity, and become friends with her. It’s a small world! Anyway, it was really nice meeting and my tutoring work must be exciting.



今日は初日だったので、お互い自己紹介をしたのだけど、これまた驚いたことに、石巻・雄勝で一緒に活動していた千鶴さんと友達なんだと。It’s a small world!!! 牡鹿半島には行ったことが無いけど、ボランティアで何度か雄勝での活動に参加していたらしい。もう、ほんとビックリしたし、なんか運命じみたものを感じて、勝手に感動してしまった、ひとしきり、東北や東京の話で盛り上がった。合計10回のチューター活動なのだけど、来週以降とても楽しみだ。

彼と別れた後は、そのままButler Libraryに移動して勉強して、11時半頃にメトロに乗って帰路に着いた。彼と話したのはビジネススクールの図書館の部屋だが、図書館なのに、みんな活発に会話を交わしていて、こちらの図書館とはずいぶん雰囲気が違った。なんというか、実にMBAっぽい空気。「おっきなミーティングルームみたいなもんですね」と彼も言っていた。スクールによって全然カラーが違うものだな、と改めて。