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I come from Burundi
作者 Jean Claude Nizeyimana   
2017/11/17 Friday 14:58:57 JST

My name is Jean Claude Nizeyimana, I come from Burundi. I came to Japan in August 2017 and I am currently at Waseada University as Research Student (Master's program).

I would like first to talk about my country.

With a population of more than 10 millions, Burundi is a small country of 27,834 km2 located in the Great Lakes Region of Central Africa. It is called “the heart of Africa", also called "country of the drum". The Burundian drum is now a UNESCO World Heritage, with its unique rhythm in the world.

Burundi is landlocked at 1,200 km from the Indian Ocean and 2,000 km from the Atlantic Ocean, it is bounded to the North by Rwanda, to the East and South by Tanzania, to the West by the Democratic Republic of Congo, its capital is Bujumbura.


Bujumbura is located in the plain of Rusizi, name attributed to it thanks to the Rusizi river that takes way along the plain and the latter drains the waters of Lake Kivu towards Lake Tanganyika. This river runs through the Rusizi Nature Reserve, where hippopotamuses swim back and forth to Lake Tanganyika. To the West of the capital there is a beautiful lake with fresh water, it is a tourist place offering a fresh air and place with many beaches. Tanganyika Lake is the second largest by volume, and the second deepest after Lake Baikal in Siberia; it is also the world's longest freshwater lake. Near this lake to the South of the Capital, there is a "Livingstone and Stanley Stone", the symbol of meeting place between these two explorers after getting lost in their expeditions.








Also the North of the country is home to beautiful small lakes, one of which is the transit of migratory birds (especially in winter) between Europe and Burundi, which gave it the name of the ”Bird Lake”.

Burundi's climate is humid tropical influenced by the altitude, with alternating rainy season that usually extends from October to May and the dry season that runs from June to September. The average temperature varies between 15.7⁰C and 23.8⁰C. Burundi is crossed by a chain of mountains defining the watershed between the river basins of the Congo River and the Nile River, hence the name "Congo-Nile Ridge". Burundi is home to the most farthest source of the Nile towards which its other rivers flow.

Our mother tongue is Kirundi while the official language is French. With the integration of Burundi into the East African Community in recent years, English and Swahili are also part of common used languages.

Let's talk about myself, Japan and the University.

I was born in 1985 in Bubanza Province, located in North of the Bujumbura Capital. I graduated from the Civil Engineering Department at the University of Burundi in 2015, then started internship at the Society of Excellence in Construction, a Burundian private company which employed me 6 months later. In my studies, I was eager to go further with advanced studies abroad, then I got the opportunity to participate in African Business Education “ABE Initiative” which is a Master's Degree and Internship Program offered by JICA to young african personnel. It's my great pleasure that Professor Akagi accepted my application for starting as Research Student before entering in Master 6 months later in his laboratory. When I came in Japan on August 2017, I was working for Public Real Estate Company, the job I got from November 2016. At the moment, from the Fall Semester I am in Akagi's laboratory for two years and half.

I have chosen Japan as my study destination for Higher Education because it offers a world class environment on advanced studies and researches with well-known study areas among them I can particularly quote the engineering area which is my field of study. The collaboration between universities and industries is an asset to me. Japan presents both experiences and lessons from industrialization which provide opportunities to work together to solve new issues.

Regarding the University, Waseda University is one of the most prestigious universities in Japan and the most funded. It’s a leader in academic research at a world-class level, it follows that his laureates are excellent staff, carry out big projects and some of them are the great personalities.

In Akagi's Lab, Professor Akagi is an important personality, this is proven by his researches outputs. Akagi Sensei is kind with his students. The Assistant Professor Alireza is nice man and laborious. The Secretary Ariura San is a welcoming person and collaborates with everyone in the office, she does not stop making sure I do not miss anything. My fellow students are also friendly. We share the same office well equipped and laid out to ensure a favorable environment for team work. At my sides there are often Alireza, Sunny, Grant and Wei whereas most of students are placed in laboratory. I highly appreciated the way in which students are involved in researches such as slope stability and tunnel engineering where we attend meetings with external researchers and also companies.

On the picture below, students had organized a party to welcome me, I was sitting beside Imada San.


Apart from our researches, the Lab organizes moments for relaxation as games and parties. Here on the photo it was Gyoza party.


Here below I show my pictures taken here in Japan. On the first, it was the entrance ceremonies at Okuma Auditorium, on the second I was in the office of Akagi Sensei when preparing the "Bunken".








I will not finish without expressing my point of view on Japan and everyday life. Japan is a safe and open country where people are friendly, quiet, respectful without discrimination. The Japanese are also conservatives, they keep their rich culture. Traditions meet modern technologies. They are hardworking people. If you come to Burundi, you will notice similarities in our culture: Burundians are very friendly and kind, especially to foreigners.

I am therefore happy to be in Japan. Like many foreigners in a host country where sometimes the language limits a bit the integration in a new society, it also affected me but I hope that things will improve over time. Thus, I enjoy life in Japan, without forgetting that my first duty is to devote myself to my studies.


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