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Student Spotlight: Life as an Expat in Tokyo

February 19, 2018 //

Most define “expat” as someone who is experiencing life in a foreign country differing from their home country. We asked Terry Parchman, Tokyo EMBA Class of 2019, how he is enjoying the Fox EMBA program at Temple University Japan.

Why did you decide to move abroad? How long have you lived abroad?
I wanted to support my daughter’s dream of returning and graduating high school in Japan. I have lived abroad more than 17 years (Okinawa, Iwakuni, Tokyo, and the Philippines).

Describe your experience living abroad.
Japan’s culture is rich with family values, and respect for others. I love immersing myself into the cultures where I live, learn their languages, and enjoy everything each culture has to offer (especially the food – love Jiro-ramen)!

Why did you decide to join an EMBA program while living abroad?
I started a master’s program at Boston University, but did not finish due to military assignments. When I discovered Temple University Japan, I immediately researched it and decided that the timing and EMBA program was right for me. The EMBA was very attractive and the perfect bridge toward achieving my entrepreneurial goals.

What is it like taking EMBA classes with students of a different nationality?
I love the global/multi-national classroom. There is so much that we learn from each other within and outside the classroom. It is an experience that only a few lucky individuals get to explore! I feel incredibly fortunate to be a part of such a program.

How has being an expat affected your experience in the EMBA program?
I enjoyed 23 years of military service, and it is really nice to continue serving my country within such an amazing host country as a civilian. Expat’s bring their unique leadership experiences into the classroom, which harmoniously collides with bright business professionals from various walks of life. It is a wonderful arrangement. I love it!

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