June 6, 2023
Student Achievement

The Japanese Program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst proudly recognizes the accomplishments of its graduating students during the academic year 2022-23. As the year drew to a close, six students completed the rigorous Japanese major requirements, while an additional thirteen students successfully fulfilled the requirements for a minor in Japanese studies.

Highlighting the academic excellence within the program, two outstanding students, Codi Reynolds and Arya (Layla) Arsenault, completed their Master's degree in Japanese Studies with remarkable theses. Codi Reynolds' thesis, titled "Spaces Between: Exploring Ma as a Literary Theory," delved into the intricate exploration of Ma, a Japanese concept of spatial and temporal intervals, as it pertains to literary analysis. Meanwhile, Arya (Layla) Arsenault's thesis, titled "Transgender in Neverland: Dysphoria in a Supernatural Anime," thoughtfully examined the portrayal of gender dysphoria in a supernatural anime context. Their research and dedication have significantly contributed to the field of Japanese studies.

To celebrate the achievements of these talented graduates, the Japanese Program organized a reception on Saturday, May 27. The event provided an opportunity for the students, their families, and the faculty to come together and commemorate the culmination of their academic journey. Faculty members were thrilled to engage in conversations with the graduates and their loved ones, creating lasting memories through conversations and photographs.

The Japanese Program at UMass Amherst takes immense pride in the fact that many of its graduates are embarking on new adventures in Japan. Several students have secured positions through prestigious programs like the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program, while others have chosen various institutions to further their careers. Their passion for the Japanese language and culture, combined with their academic achievements, will undoubtedly pave the way for success in their future endeavors.

As the academic year comes to a close, the Japanese Program would like to extend its heartfelt congratulations to all the graduates. Their accomplishments serve as a testament to their hard work, determination, and dedication to the study of Japan. The program looks forward to witnessing the impact these graduates will make in the field of Japanese studies and beyond.