Naokimi Ushiroda, the previous National CARP President, shares his experience in attending the Intercultural Exchange Trip last year. Naokimi now works as the Director of Youth and Students with the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification USA.
How was your experience last year?
The thing that stood out to me the most was being able to visit Waseda University, where CARP’s founder, Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon, our True Father, spent his college years. To be able to stand on the same steps where he stood was surreal and neat. I remember that being really significant.
Also, another really significant experience was having the students of Korea, Japan, and the US come together. After spending two days together doing different activities, we had an Acknowledgement Ceremony where students of each country shared what they appreciate about the culture and strengths of the other two countries.
That was really meaningful to witness. Those that were acknowledged felt so happy to be recognized for what they contribute.
Then, the three CARP Presidents of these key nations (Korea, Japan, and the US) were able to spend time together. It is a significant opportunity when these providential nations are able to come together.
There’s one photo of us shaking hands – that’s providential. To me, it means the key nations are working together, bringing our unique strengths.
Historically, it hasn’t been so easy. Part of that is the distance, but we are also so different culturally. So, for us to even symbolically shake hands, I was grateful for this opportunity for students of these nations to network together.
Assuming that these students in CARP will be future leaders in key areas and organizations, the friendships, relationships, and experiences they will have here as students will have a significant impact on their ability to lead in the future. That’s the most significant outcome of these trips. It’s really staying true to the vision of raising global citizens.
What are a few words to describe this trip?
There’s nothing better to expand one’s mind than to travel the world.
Any encouragements to those going this year?
The first thought that comes to mind – stay curious and you’ll learn a lot. Also, have fun! And, invest while you’re there so you create memorable friendships.
This trip is a great opportunity to do all those things.
From June 19 to July 4 this summer, over 120 students from across the US will participate in this second annual international exchange trip. Please consider giving what you can to help these students with travelling fees and other expenses.