JET Program Welcome Back Reception 2019

Jet Program returnees

On November 8, the JET Program Welcome Back Reception was held at the Official Residence.
 
Consul General Yamada Mr. Schuyler Hoss, Director of International Relations
and Protocol for the State of Washington

At the reception, JET Program recent returnees and alumni, and representaives from local Japan-related community groups, prefectural associations (kenjin-kai), sister city organizations, educational institutions attended, as well as many other well-wishers. They celebrated the safe return and future endeavors of the JET Program returnees.
 
During his opening remarks, Consul General Yamada welcomed the recent returnees and relayed a recent episode where during a business trip to Montana, he met someone who participated in the JET program 27 years ago. In addition, Mr. Schuyler Hoss, Director of International Relations and Protocol for the State of Washington spoke on the invaluable assistance that JET Program alumni have made international exchange efforts.
 
Introduction of returnees and panel discussion
Reception attendees
 
The experiences of the JET Program participants in Japan were all different. One returnee shared that her marriage in Japan was posted in the local newspaper, after which she received many blessings from the community. Another returnee used their experiences as an adopted child to help support an orphanage in Japan.

Pacific Northwest JET Alumni Association (PNWJETAA) President Adam Ledyard (left) presented a greeting, welcoming the returnees and speaking on PNWJETAA’s activities.
 
 Lastly, Ms. Mary Hammond Bernson (right), Former Director of the East Asia Resource Center at the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies of the University of Washington and long-time JET Program screener, gave greetings. She expressed a hope that the returnees will all continue contributing to grassroots Japan-US exchange through the PNWJETAA, leading the attendees in a toast.
 
JET Program returnees and alumni, Consul General Yamada and Ms. Bernson Commemorative Photo

JETs, please value the encounters you gained through the JET Program and continue to be a “kakehashi” (bridge) for US-Japan exchange.