Do you know about TIEC? Many of you may not be familiar with it. That’s because, in my opinion, it’s too much of a “cool” organization. Even after becoming alumni, there are still so many people who are very satisfied with their life that there is no one who takes pleasure in looking back and talking about their past experiences. Or, since many of them are still working adults, they simply don’t have the time. That’s why I’ve decided to take the initiative and talk about TIEC.

What follows is a very personal account of my experience at TIEC around 2010, so please read it only as a reference. However, I recently learned that these personal experiences are quite interesting from the outside, so I want to write this as a reminder.

This will be a long text, so I plan to divide it into about five parts:
(1) About TIEC←This time!
(2) Daily life at TIEC
(3) Regular events at TIEC
(4) Events hosted during my active time at TIEC
(5) Alumni activities

In this issue, I will introduce “(1) About TIEC”.

First of all, what is TIEC? TIEC stands for Tokyo International Exchange Center. Many people might not know what it is, even if they have heard the name. I was one of those people. The official website describes it as follows :

“TIEC is a place that can be used for intellectual exchange: International conferences, lectures, academic meetings, movie screenings, concerts, and much more.
Also, as a part of Tokyo Academic Park, where graduate students and researchers from Japan and abroad gather to meet and discuss, TIEC conducts various international exchange activities such as international symposiums and festivals.”

There’s a keyword here. Did you all notice it? It’s “intellectual exchange space.”

“Intellectual exchange space,” I see, that aspect is definitely there.

TIEC was a mysterious place. I don’t think there’s another place in Japan where you can experience such diversity.

Initially, I did not have any intention of joining TIEC. Nor did I plan to engage in international exchange here. I wondered why I had to do something other than research, even though I was serious about it, just because I had entered a graduate school. However, as a result, I became a party-popper, and I ended up planning events. Even after becoming an alumni, I became a person who still interacts with the current generation, despite being somewhat meddlesome. I think there are both gains and losses from what I have gained here. There are people among those in TIEC who seem to only have gains, which might mainly be a difference in toughness.

Getting back to the topic, that was an introduction to TIEC. And this was about why I became a party-popper. In short, it was because it was a cheap and good story.

At Tokyo International Exchange Center, there is a means for Japanese graduate students and researchers to support international students and foreign researchers, while living in an over-sized room in Odaiba, at a much lower price.

For information on applications, click here. (There is an English version of the page, but the details are only available in Japanese.)
Japanese ver.
English ver.

International students who are interested in TIEC and live in the Tokyo area should contact the university office. RA stands for “Resident Assistant” and is usually assumed to be a Japanese national, but it seems that international students who speak fluent Japanese may also be certified as RAs, so international students who have moved into TIEC and can afford to support other international students may give it a try.
Reference (The URL here is in Japanese only.):

As a graduate student, if you were hired as a Resident Assistant (RA) at TIEC, you received an honorarium of 18,000 yen per month, so you could actually live in Odaiba for about 50,000 yen. (Incidentally, I lived in the B building for single residents, so my monthly rent was about 50,000 yen, but if I lived in the A building, my monthly rent would be less than 40,000 yen. It is amazing to be able to live in a fairly large room in Odaiba for that price! (The monthly rent is subject to change, so please refer to the official website for official information.)

When I was in college, I originally lived in a room that cost less than 100,000 yen (that’s a lot of money!), but my graduate school laboratory was in Odaiba and my parents pushed hard for me to live in Odaiba. Now that I am a parent, I understand. It’s a great place for international exchange, inexpensive rent, and close to the lab. It’s nice, it’s nice. Why not just live there? So I applied, had interviews, and ended up living in Odaiba. (For those who apply in the future, please note that the Yurikamome train is expensive, and graduate students who have labs in Odaiba and those who don’t need to go to the university will never leave the island.)

If you are interested in a room, please click here.

Rooms in Building A (Single occupancy building, 20 sq.m.)
Room in Residence Hall A | JASSO

Rooms in Building B (single occupancy building, also 30 sq.m.)
Room in Residence Hall B | JASSO

Rooms in Building C (married couple wing)
Room in Residence Hall C | JASSO

Room in D wing (ridiculously spacious)
Room in Residence Hall D | JASSO

Although the photos are old, the rooms are clean and generally comfortable. If you are lucky, you can even see the ocean.

I know I’m starting to sound like a TIEC spin, but if you are a graduate student or researcher, you might want to take a peek.

Please refer to the application for international students here (Japanese only)

Some of you may want to know what TIEC was like and what it can do for you. In my column, I would like to introduce them briefly and enjoyably.

In the next issue, I will introduce (2) Daily life at TIEC.
Please look forward to it.


TIEC and me

Categories: EN

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