Konnichiwa!

Keep up with us as we blog our way through Tokyo to Sendai, Kanazawa, Eijeiji, Kyoto, Hiroshima, and Nagoya over this J-term! We, your three blog coordinators, will report on our activities as well as share reflections from members of the class.

Get to know us!

Celia is a junior from Oconomowoc, Wisconsin majoring in accounting and data science. In her freetime Celia enjoys playing violin in the Symphony, traveling (especially to visit her siblings that live abroad), cross-country skiing, running, cycling, and swimming (as she enjoys participating in triathlons)! Celia is most excited about the opportunity to stay and experience daily life at a monastery, Eiheiji, while in Japan. Celia would also like to work abroad one day, and is especially excited to be exposed to business practices in a different culture for that reason!

Josh is a senior environmental studies major and computer science minor from Stewartville, Minnesota. Oldest of three siblings, Josh enjoys decent coffee, good music, and the great outdoors. Josh's four years have consequently been full of sitting in coffee shops downtown, participating in the choirs on campus, and exploring the beautiful natural areas around Decorah. He also enjoys taking pictures, visiting the local breweries with friends, cheering on the Minnesota Vikings, and playing the occasional video game (academics first, of course!) As an environmental studies major, Josh is also interested in Japan's approaches to environmental issues. Being an island nation, he's curious to potentially learn about how problems such as the threat of sea level rise, air pollution, energy production, and waste are handled differently than other countries.

Megan is a senior majoring in math and physics with a secondary education minor. She is originally from Naperville, Illinois. Outside of academics, her time at Luther is mostly devoted to tutoring in her subject areas, playing the piano, and organizing badminton games on the weekends. This trip Japan is Megan’s first time out of the country, and she looks forward to being able to experience a culture different from the United States. Because the course focuses on topics of business and religion, Megan also looks forward to using the knowledge she gains on this trip to better understand Japanese culture through these lenses.

Welcome to Working Japan!

Follow us as our class of 22 travels through Japan exploring how Confucian and Buddhist institutions, principles, and values shape Japanese business practices. From our preparations and assigned readings, we have learned that no assumptions can be made about the practices of Japanese businesses, as they are drastically different than those in the United States. We have also done some independent readings on Japanese religions and ethics, to prepare ourselves for continued learning at temples, monasteries, and in personal meditation experiences. Our class will be led by Gereon Kopf, Professor of Religion, and Tony Mutsune, Professor of Management and Economics. 

We will follow up with more blog posts when we arrive in Japan but until then -- mata ne!

Celia Gould
Joshua Rupprecht
Megan Petzold