July Activity!

Apologies for the delay in updating you all on our July activity!  July was another busy month with the Experience Enkai, JETAA USA National Conference, and the New JET Participant Pre-Departure Reception.

**It seems that some people have not been receiving our e-mails sent out to the membership.  Typically, we send out an e-mail at the beginning of the month to notify everyone of our upcoming and past events, as well as reminders prior to events, so if you have not been receiving those, please e-mail us at our jetaahawaii [at] gmail account.**

Annual JETAA Hawaii Experience Enkai
July 8, 2011, Friday | Natsunoya Tea House
Another part of our series of events put on to prepare the newly-selected JET participants, the Experience Enkai is the big farewell where the JET alumni have one last chance to impart wisdom (or reminisce about crazy stories in Japan) with the new JETs before they leave.  The event annually takes place at Natsunoya Tea House in one of the Japanese-style dining rooms and sets the perfect atmosphere for the main theme of the event – enkai etiquette!

JET alumni taught the new JETs everything they will need to know during an enkai from how to properly pour and receive beer to their jikoshoukai (self-introduction).  As alumni, this is one of our favorite events where we enjoy having the chance to talk with the new JETs in a friendly atmosphere over food and drinks, encouraging them and giving them advice prior to their departure.

Following the etiquette courses, the delicious (and plentiful!) meal, and jikoshoukais, we finished the night with a string of games.  One of the games that we played called Jan-ken Train, may even come in handy for the JETs who end up teaching at elementary schools!

We would like to thank Natsunoya Tea House for the great service and for hosting us every year.  Another big thank you goes out to the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau for donating a plethora of items that the new JETs will be able to use as gifts and prizes during their life in Japan.  Lastly, thank you to all of the JET alumni who came out and supported JETAA Hawaii in preparing the new JETs!

Click on the header above to check out photos from the event!

2011 JETAA USA National Conference
July 14-17, 2011 | Washington D.C.
Every year, all of the main JETAA chapters in the US gather for the JETAA USA National Conference which is hosted by a different JETAA chapter each time.  This year, the conference was organized and hosted by the Washington D.C. chapter.  With the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami this past Spring, many of the topics covered this year were centered around how JETs in Japan, JET alumni, and JET alumni chapters have been helping to support the various relief organizations, as well as how we can continue to help out.

It was very encouraging and interesting to meet officers from other JETAA chapters and learn about their chapters and events.  As I mentioned in my July e-mail, we have a lot of great ideas that we took back from the conference that we hope to bring to JETAA Hawaii.  For a full run-through of what was covered at this year’s conference, please see this link.

Although we did not have the chance to take many photos, we did get one photo with fellow JET alumni Anthony Bianchi who is the first American-born city official elected in Japan.  He currently serves as a City Council member in Inuyama City, Aichi Prefecture.  For a video clip introducing Anthony Bianchi, see this link.

New JET Pre-Departure Orientation and Reception
July 29, 2011, Friday | Consulate General of Honolulu
I had the opportunity to attend the New JET Pre-Departure Reception, the last official event for the new JETs that takes place the day before they depart for Japan.  During the orientation portion, I was given the chance to impart some last words of wisdom to the new JETs and I’m hoping some of them remember a little of what I said.  Seeing the new JETs being briefed on where to meet at the airport the next morning, on what will happen when they arrive in Tokyo, and seeing their returned passports, now with visas, brought back fond memories!

As we say farewell to this year’s newly selected JETs, we challenge you all to do your best in Japan in representing Hawaii and the rest of our country!  …And now that the new JETs are gone, we look forward to welcoming back all of our returning JETs from Japan!

This Friday night from 7:30PM, join us at the Jodo Mission of Hawaii’s bon dance!  If you would like to attend, please RSVP at this link.  Also, please join us for our monthly happy hours that take place on the 2nd Tuesday of each month – details for the location are announced in our monthly e-mails.

Thank you everyone for your support and we hope to see you at our events!

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