Why YOU should attend the 1/26/19 Japanese Job Fair in Novi, MI!

YOU are either one of the following:

  • a Japanese-speaking American or English-speaking Japanese person who would love to use their language or cultural skills in a career 
  • a global company that does business with Japanese customers or suppliers, or has Japanese employees or expatriates

There are some pretty famous Japanese Job Fairs in London, Boston, LA, San Francisco, and of course in Japan, but even those are mostly aimed at English-speaking Japanese people looking to hire into a company and utilize both of their languages. 

The beauty of the Japanese Job Fair in Michigan is that it is mainly aimed at the Japanese-speaking American population of Michigan. 

Do you know why? According to the Consulate-General of Japan in Detroit (as of Fall 2018):

  • There are 20 universities and community colleges with Japanese language programs
  • There are 1,823 students enrolled in Japanese language courses
  • There are an additional 3,936 K-12 students studying Japanese

And that’s just the students. Do you want to know about the number of companies? According to the Consulate-General of Japan in Detroit (as of October 2017):

  • There are 499 Japanese-owned facilities in Michigan

Keep in mind that the above numbers do NOT include non-Japanese companies that work with Japanese customers, suppliers or employees!

Here’s where I personally see the disconnect occurring:

  • Most students who study Japanese are doing it because they like it, and most don’t even consider the idea to actually get a job with it
  • Most companies who need Japanese/English-speaking employees either assume a) that the person needs to be Japanese, or b) that they need to be mid-career and “fluent”

You know what’s great about this “disconnect”? It means that Michigan has a bunch of students who are passionate about Japan and the language, and have potential to become really good, motivated employees. It also means that this is an untapped resource for global companies.

“But I’m not fluent!” – is what some of you job-seekers are saying. Don’t you worry about that. 

  1. The definition of fluency depends greatly on the person, and everyone is different depending on speaking/listening and reading/writing. I know some pretty darn good professional translators who struggle with speaking Japanese, and I also know some pretty darn good professional interpreters who struggle with reading kanji. Each person happens to be gifted differently.
  2. Not every job needs someone who understands perfect Japanese. Sometimes, just the understanding of basic business customs, geography, or food culture is enough to help bridge any gap that can arise in a business meeting.
  3. You have to use it to learn the language. So why not start on the job if you’re motivated enough? We weren’t born with any particular language. You can get a basic understanding at school, and then truly get into study mode once you start a new job to learn their lingo. Many of us language learners would probably appreciate that extra vocabulary learning, anyways 🙂

So here is all the information you need:

Japanese Job Fair
January 26, 2019 (Sat)
10 AM – 1 PM 
(employers are asked to arrive 1 hr earlier)
Sheraton Detroit Novi Hotel, 21111 Haggerty Rd., Novi MI 48375
Cost: FREE for job-seekers, $25 for companies

The job fair is organization by the Great Lakes JET Alumni Association, and more details are on their website: http://greatlakesjetaa.org
JET Program Website: https://jetprogramusa.org

Here’s where to register or get more information: 

Jobseekers: register here or contact Megan Worden (gljetaaprez@gmail.com) for more information. 

Companies: register here or contact Faye Valtadoros (greatlakesjetaa.jobfair@gmail.com) for more information.

As for me, I will have a booth at the Job Fair because I will be promoting my upcoming training seminar for job-seekers. This 1-day seminar will introduce bilingual/bicultural job-seekers to: 

  • business Japanese (on the phone, in meetings, networking)
  • networking do’s and don’ts (i.e. exchanging business cards)
  • overview of potential bilingual/bicultural functions in administration, expatriate support, engineering, materials/purchasing, sales/marketing, etc.
  • advanced overview of document translation
  • advanced overview of interpreting (meetings, phone conferences, informal settings)
  • in-depth Q&A sessions

(If you’re interested in my training session, check out my online training programs here!)

Please share this information and comment if you have any questions; thank you!

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