Tsukuba UNIV Contact

Alumni Voices

Nurbibi Nuryagdiyeva


Contracts Specialist, Hyundai AMCO Co., Ltd., Turkmenistan

Had a pleasure to work with has a highly qualified faculty, The exceptional qualifications and experience of the SPCEA faculty contribute to the University’s ability to provide an education with both an international perspective. The diversity of student body is mirrored by the diversity among faculty.
Many SPCEA graduates continue their education at prestigious overseas universities. Others have already made an important mark in the private and public sectors in the region. SPCEA graduates become competent professionals with a broad and integrated vision of contemporary society that enhances our capacity as citizens and primes us for ethical leadership in the service of our countries and the world.
I would like to express my gratitude to Japanese Government and to Selection Committee of Tsukuba University for giving me this chance to obtain an honorable MA Degree at Tsukuba University; same time could enjoy the country’s beauty, culture and people.

Utegenova Ailuna Rakhmetovna


Lecturer, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty, Kazakhstan(2008-2009)

I had a great experience in studying at the University of Tsukuba. Being enrolled in SPCEA program in 2009 was an important step in the development of my professional career. Through the SPCEA program I had the opportunity to deepen my knowledge in the field of international relations and foreign policy of Japan. I also got the opportunity to make research on the issues I have been interested. The program curriculum and the library resources will be very helpful for the students who want to gain knowledge at the University of Tsukuba.

Aigerim Miyatova


Director of Student Development, American University of Central Asia, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (2008-2009)

I am extremely happy that I was chosen as one of the candidates to complete MA degree at University of Tsukuba under the SPCEA program. My sincere gratitude goes to the founders of this program and to the professors whose courses I enjoyed taking very much. Also, for further consideration, it would be good to establish an alumni association to keep in touch with every one of us and be up to dated.

Ismoil Yakubdzhanov

Technical Engineer, Closed Joint-Stock Company “Babilon Mobile”, Khujand, Tajikistan (2009-2010)

Speaking about the role of SPCEA program in my life, I have to say that my participation in this program was a challenge for me. Though, sometimes I felt difficulties during studies, I gained proper educational experience that will be helpful for my further career progress. As a whole, in my view, the SPCEA program is the best choice for students from Central Asia who want to continue their education abroad. Teaching staff is properly qualified and all conditions for study and living are organized well.

I would like to add that I am so grateful to my supervisor – Associate Professor Timur Dadabaev as well as my co-supervisors Associate Professors Leslie Tkach M. Kawasaki and Asuka Kawano for their full support during writing my master thesis. I cannot imagine my work without their contribution.

Further, I intend to continue my researches on disaster management that I carried out in Tsukuba University. For this purpose I have applied for several PhD programs and waiting for their responses.

Aray Seitbayeva


Senior expert of Department of international cooperation, Ministry for emergency situations, Astana, Kazakhstan (2008-2010)

The SPCEA offers an opportunity for the representatives from Central Asian countries to get high-quality education at the University of Tsukuba which is credited as one of the top universities in Japan and well-known for its excellent academic environment, professional staff and rich library. The SPCEA, provided as programs taught in English, is also unique in terms of giving a chance for those Central Asian graduate students and professionals, who are willing to continue their study in Japan, fluent in English language, have sufficient educational and professional background, but have no knowledge of Japanese language. At the same time Japanese language courses are available for graduate students of the SPCEA. High-qualified professors from the University of Tsukuba and visiting professors from other universities provide an excellent study and research opportunities through delivering interesting lectures, organizing discussions and forums, paying much time and attention for each student, creating friendly atmosphere. Tutor system, satellite room, study rooms, international student center, and various extra-curricular activities make the student life in campus more pleasant and comfortable.
I’m very grateful to the SPCEA for giving me an opportunity to get my Master degree in Japan, broaden my knowledge in international relations, develop research skills and improve the level of my Japanese language. I have started to study Japanese language during my bachelor program in international relations at the L. N. Gumilyov Eurasian National University in Kazakhstan. My dream was to be enrolled in Master program at one of the best universities in Japan. The SPCEA made my dream comes true. Strong educational base, research opportunities, high-qualified professors, international environment, all those factors fully met my expectations.
I would like to express my highest respect and deepest gratitude to Professor Timur Dadabaev. Serving as the main advisor to my final thesis he followed the research from its inception to its conclusion with his concrete comments and valuable advices that motivated me to scrutinize the problem thoroughly and in detail. Professor Dadabaev played a great role in my life not only as irreplaceable supervisor, but also as a person who significantly enriched my knowledge in International Relations; Central Asian studies and helped me to grow both intellectually and as a person.

After graduation from the SPCEA I have started my career as an expert of International cooperation department at the Ministry for emergency situations of the Republic of Kazakhstan. It was one month prior to the Great East Japan Earthquake. Our Ministry sent aviation to evacuate the citizens of Kazakhstan from risky regions and to provide humanitarian aid in response to such a large-scale tragedy. Taking into consideration my educational background at the University of Tsukuba and knowledge of Japanese language I was entrusted to coordinate further bilateral cooperation in the field of disaster management with Asian countries, including Japan. At present time we are successfully cooperating with Japanese International Cooperation Agency, Asian Disaster Reduction Center in Kobe, etc. During those 2 years after graduation I have participated in several international events on high level in Japan such as World Ministerial Conference on Disaster reduction in Tohoku (Sendai, 3-4 July, 2012), Asian Conference on Disaster Reduction (Kobe, 23 January, 2013). My study in Japan helped me better understand Japanese political system, culture, traditions, etc. inside of this country. That factor in addition to the theoretical knowledge gained in the framework of the SPCEA makes me easier to better handle my current job, communicate and collaborate with the counterparts from Japanese agencies and institutions.

My final thesis at the SPCEA was on the Foreign policy of Kazakhstan in uranium sector: changes and adaptive behavior. My current job somehow correlates with this field. For instance, Committee on state control of emergencies and industrial safety (including the state control of industrial safety at atomic facilities) is under the authority of the Ministry for emergency situations. In the Department of international cooperation among other directions I’m responsible for developing cooperation with the IAEA. In this regard, my research at the University of Tsukuba made the strong theoretical base for my practical work.

The SPCEA brings together many graduate students and professionals from Central Asia and creates friendly atmosphere that makes possible the establishment of network between them. After graduating from the program those alumni play roles in various political, economic, social, cultural sectors in their respective countries. For instance, the SPCEA graduates in Kazakhstan work in various government agencies, national companies, embassies, projects, etc. Sometimes our common student past at the University of Tsukuba makes us easier to communicate, cooperate and collaborate in various aspects of our job and support personal ties.

I think that designing the web-site for the SPCEA program is an excellent idea to provide first-hand information for prospective students and link all alumni spread all over the world. Good luck and best wishes to my professors and friends!

Shuhrat Baratov


PhD student, Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies (Central Asia and Middle East), the Australian National University (2008-2010)

I have been fortunate to spend two years in SPCEA studying international relations. When I have joined the program I had already had an educational background and a brief work experience in the related filed. Nevertheless, in the SPCEA I have discovered for myself a wide range of new and interesting topics and issues in international relations. Throughout the lectures and the seminar discussions I have developed my own research interest (i.e., identity in international relations). I have received a great support and encouragement from my academic supervisors and other teachers to develop a research project based on my research interest, which I am currently pursuing in my PhD studies at the Australian National University. For me, the SPCEA has indeed been a perfect place to get introduced to new horizons of knowledge, develop academic skills as well as look ahead for new opportunities and build future plans. Another valuable aspect of the program is that it gathers young professionals from Central Asia, which is very helpful for developing networks. And, of course, what make the SPCEA special is its academic and other staff members, who are dedicated to making it one of the best master’s programs at the University of Tsukuba.

Sherzod Muminov

PhD student, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom (2008-2010)

I enjoyed my time at Tsukuba and have very fond memories of the University and the town. The program gave me an opportunity to develop my Japanese language skills and prepare for the PhD. I am very grateful and proud to have been part of the program and I look forward to going back to Tsukuba in the future.

Tursunova Dilafruz


Senior Officer, Japan International Cooperation Center (JICE), Tashkent, Uzbekistan (2009-2011)

Two-year Master’s Degree Course under the framework of SPCEA program provided opportunity for building academic foundation for conducting research on PhD level in future and was a unique opportunity to get experience of Japan.

The program provided environment stimulating the development of skills necessary for conducting research independently. Faculty members provided rigorous evaluation of achievements and guidance on each stage of conducted research. Seminars and lectures helped to deepen knowledge in areas of IR Theory, Globalization, Cultural and Anthropological Studies as well as sharpen analytical ability via ideational exchanges with professors and fellow students.

Being a program specifically designed for CA countries SPCEA offered an opportunity to widen understanding of Central Asia via communication and exchange of opinions with students from other CA countries.

Among other advantages experienced in Tsukuba University:

- Exposure to the international environment of Tsukuba University that provided opportunity to learn more about world’s cultural diversity;

- Opportunity to learn Japanese language in class and in everyday interactions with local people;

- Opportunity to get first-hand experience of Japanese society from cultural and technological aspects via daily observation and experience.

Ganieva Nozima


Research Assistant, Central Asian Development Institute, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (2010-2012)

I had studied in the SPCEA program beginning from 2010 until my graduation in 2012. I think it is one of the most sophisticated academic programs in Japan focusing on Central Asian region, which brings together both cutting-edge research and teaching.

One of the strongest features of the program is that the faculty members have an extensive background in dealing with various historical, social, political, economic and cultural modalities of international relations in Central Eurasia and beyond.

During my studies I have come to the realization of how fast the Master’s Program in International Area Studies has been transforming into a multidisciplinary program appreciating all the twists and turns of contemporary political science and international/regional studies.

Among other distinguishing features of the programs I could mention its extensive focus on developing students academic writing and critical thinking – which is often underestimated in some of contemporary Central Asia’s educational establishments.

Overall, I should say I have greatly benefited from studying in the program and the skills I have accumulated over the past two years are helping me in my current professional development. I wish the Program every success, as well as plenty of brilliant and energetic graduates in the years to come!

Gulrukhsor Safarova


Communications Officer at OXFAMB GB, Dushanbe, Tajikistan (2011-2012)

I was a one-year Master Degree student of Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences (SPCEA program) at University of Tsukuba. Thousands of kilometers separate Japan from my home country, Tajikistan, for me it was a big challenge to study and live in a new place. Nevertheless, I have decided myself to make this memorable “voyage” to the sun rising country.

Within a year I have developed my skills in International Relations studies, gained deep knowledge in the spheres of Anthropology and Sociology, and at last, but not less important got my Master diploma!

I always felt support of professors and staff of SPCEA office who were eager to help in any issues, whether these were personal or problems related to the studying. I would like one more time express my gratitude to professors and SPCEA for assisting me while my being in Tsukuba.

I made a lot of friends from different countries around the world, with various background and culture. It was an incredible opportunity to live in a society where everything is new for you: languages, values, culture, and people. I think it was a great multicultural experience.

I would like to add that Japan left unforgettable memories and impressions! I indeed hope to come back to Japan once again!!!

Shokirjon Mahmadov

Faculty Development Program Coordinator, University of Central Asia, Dushanbe, Tajikistan (2011-2012)

I had a good learning and research experience at the University of Tsukuba. The SPCEA program, which brings different students from Central Asia, was beneficial in terms of having a chance of discussing various regional issues with students from the region itself. I benefited from such an opportunity a lot. While researching the case of Tajikistan in terms of history production and historiography, I had an excellent chance to learn a lot about history writing and historiography in Central Asian countries.

Overall, the University of Tsukuba was useful to meet a lot of students from almost all parts of the globe and to learn about their countries, cultures, etc. The classes, where students from various backgrounds came together, were an excellent place to put articles we read into different contexts.

Umirzakov Akmaljon Akhataliyevich

Legal Counsellor, Asian Development Bank Uzbekistan Resident Mission, Tashkent, Uzbekistan (2007-2009)

An international environment where one can is exposed to multiculturalism that blends traditional Eastern and cosmopolitan Western values. The experience of tenured professors who can truly be regarded as pioneers in establishing a university where English is a medium instruction should be highly appreciated. Moreover, students can always count on and rely upon friendly administrative staff. The mixture of MEXT, WB and ADB scholarship holders within one Faculty/Department creates a unique atmosphere where one can exchange ideas and intellectually grow along with the brightest minds gathered from all over the globe.

Maya Ashirova


Country Coordinator, Promotion of Information and Communication Technology in Turkmenistan (PICTT), International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX), Ashgabat, Turkmenistan (2009-2010)

I had a remarkable experience in the University of Tsukuba through daily interaction with renowned faculty and friendly staff of SPCEA program. As MA student I was lucky to spend one year in a great learning environment, to receive a wealth of knowledge, and to discover multitude of opportunities for further academic and professional growth.
Moreover, SPCEA Program provided a unique opportunity to meet fellows from all over the world, to make friends, and to establish long-term relationships with professionals from Central Asia, Japan, and many other countries.
I would also like to express my enormous gratitude to the founders of SPCEA program, and to all staff that provided support and assistance to students from the very first day in Tsukuba. I was very impressed by the excellent organization of the Program: from recruiting stage to thesis defense. I do not see the successful completion of my studies without guidance of my supervisors; therefore, my special thanks go to Dr.Yutaka Tsujinaka, Dr. Carole Faucher, Dr.Asuka Kawano, and Dr.Tsypylma Darieva.

Beknazarov Azamat

Front-end web developer at Rakuten Inc., Tokyo, Japan (2009-2011)

azamatIn my application to SPCEA program I wrote about Tsukuba University this way: “What attracts me is Tsukuba’s concern to ‘nurture tomorrow’s problem-solvers’. Its multicultural environment, highly qualified professors, and the brightest students from all over the world is the learning environment I would like to be part of. ” After studying for two years at Tsukuba University, I can surely say that my expectation were completely fulfilled.
First and the foremost, SPCEA gave me an opportunity to learn about international relations, public policy, development studies, Japanese culture and economics. In brief, it broadened my horizon and view about the world.

Secondly, it gave me an opportunity to conduct the research in the field I am interested in. I was honored to investigate engines of Japanese economy named sogo shosha and their business strategies in information age. I was deeply interested (and still I am) in this subject. I would not be able to conduct this research without direction and advice of my professors and academic advisors. So, I am deeply indebted to my professors for the patience and invaluable advices throughout the research. Thanks to them I was able to graduate successfully and pursue the career I am fully in.

I express my sincere gratitude to my professors, SPCEA staff and the University of Tsukuba. Thank you!

Dilnoza Mirdjalilova


PhD Student at the University of Tokyo, Japan (2010-2012)

Every day, every moment at the University of Tsukuba was full of memories, enjoyment, and inspiration. Despite the background that I have, Teaching English as a Foreign Language, and career to pursue, the program provided me a matching point for my research interests and professional development. Diverse courses, faculty members specialized in different fields, distinct learning environment along with unique campus that has all the facilities that I seek for offered me with a specialized training on how to conduct research.

Two years in the program were the greatest opportunity to make lifelong friends from every corner of the world and get acquainted with the students from bordering countries including Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.
Upon the graduation, I was presented outstanding thesis award. And I believe that this would not have been possible without the assistance and support of thesis committee members. I acknowledge and express my appreciation of these people for their invaluable contributions.
Thus, if you plan to undertake research at postgraduate level that meets international standards in the future, the experience you gain in the program will get you well prepared for any doctoral program.