Feb 18

JET alum’s martial arts non-profit seeks to connect with Tohoku dojos for volunteering

Posted by JET alum Jennifer Leigh-Gould (Miyagi-ken, Shibata-machi, 2001-04) to the Sendai Earthquake Friends and Family Facebook group:

Out of the Dojo, Into the World™ is a newly formed non-profit community of martial artists who are very interested in helping with disaster relief and community re-building in Tohoku. I wonder if anyone can connect us with local dojos in the area and/or service projects in need of volunteers. In the meantime, please visit and like our page. We’re just starting out and eager to connect with the international community in any way that we can. (I am a former JET 2001-2004 – in Shibata Machi, Miyagi Ken).


Feb 13

The English Language Fellow Program – The Department of State

Posted by Kay Monroe (Miyazaki-shi, 1995 -97). Click here to join the JETwit Jobs Google Group and receive job listings even sooner by email.

English Language Fellow Program is currently accepting new applications for teaching in 120 countries…

The EL Fellow Program is funded by the U.S. Department of State (DOS) within the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), Office of English Language Programs, and is administered by the Center for Intercultural Education and Development (CIED) at Georgetown University, Washington, DC.

The English Language (EL) Fellow Program promotes English language learning around the world and fosters mutual understanding between the people of the United States and those of other countries. It places talented, highly qualified U.S. educators with Master’s degrees with a focus in TEFL/TESL or Applied Linguistics in all regions of the world. Through U.S. embassy projects, EL Fellows share their expertise, hone their skills, gain international experience, and learn other cultures. Upon returning to the United States, they share their experiences and acquired knowledge with their communities and professional colleagues. Today, the EL Fellow Program is more vital than ever. As a premier, competitive opportunity to work on TESL/TEFL projects in developing countries, the EL Fellow Program has an impact not only on the institutions that host EL Fellows, but also within the wider academic community. Teachers at the host institution receive professional tools from the EL Fellow that promote educational effectiveness and expand their ability to provide English instruction for a wider variety of student populations in a larger number of educational Read More

Jan 17

Thanks to Virginia Murray for catching this article and posting it to the JETAA Southeast Facebook group. It seems that Linnea Bradshaw, a fellow JET of Virginia’s from 1988, is a Japanese teacher at a high school in Delaware whose class was recently visited by Delaware’s Governor Jack Markell. Go JET!

Markell shares travel experiences with Appoquinimink students

Delaware’s Governor visited the Level II language class at Appoquinimink High School Tuesday morning to share his experiences in Japan and to take questions from the class he video-chatted with from the foreign country during his trip last year.

Here are some excerpts from the article:

“Governor Jack Markell told students in Linnea Bradshaw’s Japanese class Tuesday that speaking multiple languages gives them a leg-up in the job market. Delaware’s Governor visited the Level II language class at Appoquinimink High School Tuesday morning to share his experiences in Japan and to take questions from the class he video-chatted with from the foreign country during his trip last year.”


“Markell wasn’t the only one in the room Tuesday who has experienced Japan. Last summer, Bradshaw took 23 students from both Middletown and Appoquinimink High Schools to Japan to immerse them in the culture. Bradshaw said that her highest-level students can speak sentences, and understand, write and read Japanese.”


“During his multi-city trip of the country, Markell, his wife, and staff, met with several businesses in the Miyagi area in hopes of building a stronger partnership between Delaware and Miyagi.”

Click here to read the full article on the Middletown Transcript’s website as well as see a photo of Linnea with the Governor: http://www.middletowntranscript.com/article/20130108/NEWS/130109810/0/SEARCH

Dec 24

“Introduction to the JET Program” video created by JET alum Eliot Honda

Here’s the latest video project by Hawaii-based JET Eliot Honda (Ehime-ken, Uwajima-shi), who previously created four videos about his JET town of Uwajima-shi as well as a video titled “Sister City Ties“:

Eliot says: “I finally completed the JET Program Introduction video. (Revised, hopefully audio and graphics look better.)”


Published on Dec 23, 2012

An Introduction to the JET Program.The Japanese Government, CLAIR, nor The JET Program had any involvement in the creation of this video. All information displayed in this video came from the experience I had over my three years on JET, as well as speaking with other ALTs throughout Japan. Your experience may differ, because as they say:”Every situation is different.”

For official documentation on the JET Program please visit these sites:

Wallpaper by Kevin Macleod
Sunshine by Kevin Macleod

Dec 6

Tohoku Holiday Greeting Project

Thanks to JETAA USA Board of Advisors member Jessyca Wilcox for sharing this information:

Tohoku Holiday Greeting Project

American students can send holiday greetings to students in the Tohoku area of Japan devastated by the 3/11/2011 disaster. Cards, which can be written in English, will be distributed beginning December 17. Postage for a regular-size envelope is $1.05.

Send cards to:

Boys and Girls
c/o Mr. Choji Sugihara
Shoshi High School
14-18 Nakamachi, Koriyama-shi
Fukushima-ken, 963-8004

Nov 26

JapanLocal: Tottori JET Anthony Lieven’s latest Misasa video – November 2012

Tottori JET Anthony Lieven has been creating new videos each month as part of a project that introduces his JET town of Misasa to the world.  With Anthony’s permission, here is his latest video:


Misasa Monthly Video 08 (November 2012) – Mount Mitoku Sanbutsuji’s Fire Festival from Red T-Shirt Guy on Vimeo.

Nov 25

“Privy to Mysterious Loos” by New Zealand JET Tania Butterfield

A recent blog article by current JET Tania Butterfield that recently appeared in New Zealand publication Marlborough Express.  (Thanks to Jessica Tisch for posting on the JETAA South Island Facebook group):

Privy to Mysterious Loos

Last weekend I discovered something I should have known since I arrived here – toilets are not my friend.

If you know anything about Japan, you know it has some unusual toilets.

No, I am not referring to the squat toilets, which I quite happily use at school.

I am referring to the insanely automated toilets with a billion buttons that do everything under the sun so you never have to touch that part of your body again.

Some of the buttons make sense – like the button to ….

Click here to read the full article.



Nov 25
Following its successful release on Kindle, where For Fukui’s Sake was the #1 bestselling Japan Kindle book on Amazon for much of the year, For Fukui’s Sake by Sam Baldwin (Fukui-ken, 2004-06) is now available in paperback – just in time for Christmas!  (Read the JQ book review on JETwit.)

Get a copy for yourself, and your Japan or travel-loving friends and family.

Shopping in the USA, Canada or Australia?
A personal note from Sam Baldwin:  “When you’ve finished reading it, please do take five minutes to review it on Amazon to let others know what you thought of it.  Thanks.” Read More

Nov 19

JET alum seeks members for new taiko club in Atlanta

Posted to the JETAA Southeast Facebook group by Melanie Davenport (Gifu-ken, 1991-92):

“Hello everyone! I’m working with a young woman, Sarah Choy, who plays Taiko to try to form a Taiko Club here in Atlanta! If anyone is interested in becoming involved or just wants to be kept in the loop about our progress, please let me know! What fun will this be?! Ikimasho! Tanoshii!”

If interested, check for updates on the JETAA Southeast Facebook group and get in touch with Melanie there.

Nov 16

NBC12.com – Richmond, VA News, Weather, Traffic
From Richmond, VA’s NBC news affiliate (click link below to see news video):

Taylor Anderson documentary draws thousands to Center Stage


Thousands of people turned out to Richmond’s Center Stage theater Friday, to see the documentary of Taylor Anderson – a young teacher from Chesterfield who worked and died in the earthquake and tsunami in Japan last spring.

It’s the story of the 24-year-old who is believed to be the first American victim of the disaster.

The tsunami that followed the 8.9 magnitude quake rocked Japan’s eastern coast, killing hundreds.

Taylor was last seen after the earthquake riding her bike toward her apartment after ensuring that students at her school had been picked up by their parents.

More than a year later – Taylor’s story is shared through the documentary Live Your Dream: The Taylor Anderson Story.

Film maker Regge Life interviewed dozens even traveled to Japan to find her story.

“It wasn’t until I made the trip to Ishinomaki, and I can talk to her friends face to face, that I knew there was something there,” said Life.

At the screening, Andy Anderson was happy to see so many people take interest in his daughter’s story.

“Regge’s really good at being able to take all the people who are telling Taylor’s story and weaving us all together,” said Anderson.

“You see Taylor from her beginnings as a small child and her interests in Japan that just kept growing through her own nurturing,” said Life.

There may be more showings, but right now the documentary is not in theaters. It is being sold for educational purposes.

Copyright 2012 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.

For JQ Magazine‘s May 2012 interview with Regge Life on the making of the film, click here.

Sep 30

JETAA Northern California announces 2012 Scholarship Winner

Milo Barisof (front right) celebrates winning the 2012 JETAANC scholarship with his parents, Steven and Bonnie, and JET Alumni John Dzida and Johanna Wee. (Photo by JETAA NC.)

Via the JETAA Northern California website.  FYI, ten years ago JETAA Northern California created a scholarship for students who demonstrate interest in Japan’s language and culture.  

The JET Alumni Association of Northern California recently awarded its annual scholarship to Milo Barisof, a graduate of Alternative Family Education, an independent home study program in Santa Cruz, CA.

Throughout his high school career, Milo pursued his passion for Japanese language and culture while maintaining a demanding course load. His years of diligent practice were apparent when Milo was awarded first place at the 38th annual Japanese Speech Contest, sponsored by the Consulate-General of Japan in San Francisco. In addition to his academic achievements, Milo is an accomplished violinist, who performed throughout high school with the Santa Cruz County Youth Symphony.

“Milo’s love of the Japanese language and his passion for learning is very apparent,” said Johanna Wee, JETAANC board member. “Given Milo’s work ethic and drive, I am confident he will achieve everything he sets out to do in life.”

Milo entered Pomona College in Claremont, CA this fall. He plans to major in Japanese.

The JETAANC scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate an interest in Japan’s language and culture. Applicants are evaluated on academic accomplishments, extracurricular activities, personal essays and letters of recommendation. The scholarship is in its 10th year.

Sep 17

Crash Japan: Million Cranes for Japan‏

Via Crash Japan, Posted by Kay Monroe (Miyazaki-shi, 1995 -97):


Million Cranes for Japan

We at CRASH Japan are launching an exciting international campaign: “Million Cranes for Japan“. The “Million Cranes for Japan” Campaign invites you to volunteer your time by participating with others in the making of origami cranes. Then give the cranes to family and friends for a donation, 100 yen or 1 dollar each, and give the money to CRASH to support the vision.

A paper craneIs there still a need to help Japan?

Soon after the great earthquake on March 11, 2011, CRASH Japan began working to deliver aid and bring hope to survivors in Tohoku. Thanks to an amazing response from Christians in Japan and around the world, CRASH planted five bases in Tohoku and has mobilized almost three thousand volunteers since the disaster! God has used thousands of people like you to bless Japan.

Yet today many survivors are still alone, living in fear and without hope. We have the opportunity to continue to make a huge impact in Tohoku by sending volunteers — Christian volunteers who tend to emotional and spiritual needs by bringing the love of Jesus Christ. Volunteer activities include performing concerts, serving food, playing with children, cleaning, and giving hand massages. Volunteers often have opportunities to share the gospel with survivors. Read More

Sep 17

JETAA: Rocky Mountain JETs Come Out For The Kids

Via the Japan Local Government Center blog:

The Rocky Mountain JETAA chapter has been busy with two recent events helping out their various Colorado sister cities.

Fujiyoshida, in Yamanashi-ken, and Colorado Springs just celebrated their 50th anniversary in early August, so RMJETAA mobilized their Colorado Springs and Denver JET alumni to participate in the festivities in Colorado Springs and be available to assist with translating, interpreting, and other duties for the 70 visitors from Japan. One main place they helped out was the family event held at America the Beautiful Park on August 4th. Because many JET alumni from Colorado Springs were placed in Fujiyoshida as ALTs and CIRs, the celebration was a great chance for friends and acquaintances on both sides to get together again and reminisce about old times spent together in Japan. As part of the celebration, Mayor Horiuchi of Fujiyoshida and the students presented a check to Colorado Springs for $11,415, raised by the citizens of Fujiyoshida to help their sister city recover from the recent devastating wildfires there.  Although Fujiyoshida now directly contracts with Colorado Springs for private CIRs it was wonderful that they could still draw on the resources of their former ties to the JET Program.


Click JLGC link for the full blog post in English.

クリックJLGC リンク 日本語 ブログ.

Aug 7

JETAANC(Northern California)’s Pacific Bridge Spring 2012

The new issue of the official JETAANC magazine, Pacific Bridge, is now available. Read it online here.

In this issue you will:
-Learn about local efforts to support the recovery of the Tohoku region.
-Hear about how new JETs are settling into the Tohoku area.
-Read about recent events in the JETAANC chapter.
And much more!

Pacific Bridge Spring 2012

Jun 26


JETwit recently posted a JETAA Hawaii article by chapter President Darryl Toma about Hawaii JET alums volunteering to support a visit by the Hiroshima City Mayor along with a visiting delegation from Hiroshima.

FYI, there’s also now an article in Japanese about Mayor Matsui’s visit on the Japan Local Government Center (aka CLAIR-NY) blog:  http://www.jlgc.org/TopicList.aspx?topicCategoryID=16&topicID=279&languageTypeID=2&controlType=Display


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