The Tayo-sei program is designed to get college students of color interested in studying Japanese language and culture.

College students of color in the South are being sought for a four-week seminar series designed to get them interested in studying Japan’s language and culture.

Black and Latinx students from Alabama, Georgia and the Carolinas who have never studied the language or traveled to the country are invited to apply for the Tayō-sei program, which is funded by the Japan Foundation’s Los Angeles office. 

The four-week virtual series is free for participants. It will start off with three language and culture lessons by different expert instructors, followed by a debriefing that will provide students with resources on how to pursue study and work opportunities in Japan. Students must attend three out of the four sessions to be considered to have completed the series.

The program is to be run by a group of Southern alumni from the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program, or JET, a Japanese government-sponsored program that has brought 70,000 young people (half of them Americans) to cities and towns around Japan since 1987 to assist in teaching English or aiding in their international relations outreach. Many JETs go on to become fluent in Japanese, with some ending up working in Japanese companies. 

The JET Alumni Association Southeast, which has connected former JET participants in the four-state region for nearly 30 years, is partnering with the national alumni association (USJETAA) to administer the series. 

To be eligible, students must be enrolled in school and exhibit a passion for global language and cultures. Students at historically black colleges and universities are of particular interest to the organizers. 

Applications are due Nov. 3, and participants will be notified of acceptance by Nov. 10. 

Find out more information or apply here, or see the flyer below. 

Contact JET Alumni Association Southeast President Ingrid Galinat at with questions. 

10 20 JETAASE flyer

As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...