JET Program sends two alums to Japan

  • Old Main on a sunny day
  • Old Main on a sunny day

Two recent Nebraska Wesleyan alums, Josh Williams ('23) and Maria Bartak ('19), will spend the next year in Japan. 

Both were accepted to the prestigious Japanese Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program. The program, now in its 35th year, promotes cultural exchange between Japan and other nations. JET is managed by the government of Japan and offers participants the opportunity to live and work in the country. Those accepted into the program work in Japanese communities facilitating international exchange activities or teaching English in Japanese schools. 

Williams, a biochemistry and molecular biology major with a minor in language literacy: Japanese, has dreamed of traveling abroad since he his first year at Nebraska Wesleyan, "After taking my first Japanese language course, I immediately began the process of planning to study abroad." However, the COVID-19 pandemic quickly put a halt on Williams' plans. 

Williams used the time when he couldn't go abroad to explore Japanese culture, meet with STEM professionals and teachers in Japan, and prepare his JET Program application. "I want to see how STEM education is taught in Japan compared to my own experiences," stated Williams. "I am excited to learn more about Japanese culture. I will also take this experience back with me at the end of my program as I pursue a graduate degree and reflect on my year abroad." 

Bartak was not available for comment. She was a communication studies major with a minor in modern language literacy: Japanese. 

Congratulations, Josh and Maria!