People of Georgian: International coordinator finds ‘true personality’ at college
January 29, 2021

What’s your story?

The Georgian community is full of unique, inspiring perspectives —and we’re sharing them as part of an ongoing series.

People of Georgian: Meet Kenta Shirakura

I first came here as an ESL student, studying English back in 2011.

I really liked Georgian College and my experience in Canada, so I decided to come back.

The social culture – how people react and behave in social environments – matched my personality more than Japanese society, so I really found my true personality when I came here.

I especially loved experiencing cultural diversity in Canada and being able to meet different people.

I’m very openminded and outgoing, which wasn’t really me back in Japan; it was kind of hidden. My personality changed when I came here.

My mom said she thinks I always talked a lot. That was an interesting one to hear.

A group of people stand together and smile at the camera.

In Japan, there’s no real cultural oppression, but in the classroom and social environments, I felt that. I always had questions about how things are done but I never asked those questions; you have to sort of accept what’s out there as what it is.

So, it was a very interesting feeling for me to come to Canada and experience openness.

A person leans against a railing outside, with a building and mountain in the background.

In Canada, everyone has a different opinion. In the classroom, certainly, I felt that people would express their own opinions, and I learned there’s no one way of answering certain questions.

I really like that about living in Canada. People accept you as you are.

Through my experience working as an international student ambassador at Georgian, I really liked helping others.

It made me want to come work at Georgian College, and I’m now in the college’s International department helping international students.

I want to enhance other international students’ experience by doing whatever I can to help.

Kenta Shirakura, alumnus of Georgian’s Hospitality Management – Hotel and Resort program (Class of 2015), which is now our Hospitality – Hotel and Resort Operations Management program. Kenta is also the International Housing Coordinator with Georgian’s Segal International Centre.

Check out Georgian’s Hospitality programs.

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