With a mission to improve university publicity and increase admissions, a new BYU-Hawaii pilot program is going to be launched in Japan this year. Kenichi Kurokawa, a 2005 BYUH graduate from Japan who majored in information systems, has been appointed to be the Japanese recruiting representative. He is to run firesides in Japan aimed to assist future students registering for BYUH and increase the number of future students, he said.
Kurokawa called his mission an “honor.” He said, “I certainly want to see more Japanese students come to BYUH. I am an alumnus and this school has changed my life. I am a personal witness of it. I wish others can experience it too.”
Everything began with the proposal of Michael Sudlow, who just retired as the assistant director of Admissions at BYUH. He suggested the university hire alumni to run a recruiting office in Asia on behalf of BYUH, and Japan is first stop. In 2012, Sudlow visited Japan for a fireside and announced this experimental recruiting project.
“I was looking for a BYUH graduate who was willing to do this as a part-time job. I’ve known Ken for a long time, and his enthusiasm fits this position,” Sudlow said.
In the future, Kurokawa plans to hold a fireside covering all 29 stakes in Japan. He said he will spend one weekend each month flying around Japan for firesides while still running his father’s consulting business at the same time. Since this recruiting representative position is a renewable one-year contract, Kurokawa said, “If this works well, BYUH might consider hiring other recruiting representatives in other Asian countries.”
If future students are interested in attending BYUH, Kurokawa’s job is to provide them with advice. He said, “I’m appointed mainly for BYUH future students. I am physically in Japan, so for every single question they can come to me. They can directly contact me via email, phone call, or face-to-face meetings after each fireside. I am also a representative of the SMYC (Special Multi-Stake Youth Conference) in Japan, so I will visit the youths and introduce them to BYUH.”
Sharing the same mission along with the recruiting project, BYUH’s Japanese Chapter recently created the website http://byuhjapan.wix.com/index. Airi Tanaka, the current president of the Japan Media Committee, as well as being a university studies junior from Japan, said she hopes the site can provide some insights about BYUH for future students in Japan. “The site is very user friendly because it’s made by current BYUH students who have first-hand experience and all information is written in Japanese,” she said.
A blog with photos and video, the site provides guidelines about application and topics regarding student life. For example, scholarships, meal plans, campus maps, and Q&As, etc.
Issei Yamashita, an elementary education freshman from Japan, said he wished he had known about the recruiting project and the website when he applied for BYUH. “With these my life would have been much easier. The registration process was so difficult because everything is in English. We don’t use English that often in Japan. I’ve often had to check out everything in the dictionary. Certainly I’ll tell my friends back home to look up the site and contact Ken for help,” said Yamashita.
To contact Kenichi Kurokawa, email him at email@example.com.