Friday, 21 July 2023
Jissen Joshi Gakuen School
I am delighted to welcome you to Government House and to Adelaide and South Australia.
I hope you will have a wonderful three months here and will take home many friendships and experiences.
I was delighted to visit Jissen Joshi Gakuen School in November last year during my visit to Tokyo and to learn about the school’s history and speak to students.
Our State has a strong connection with, and affection for, Japan, and our relationship with your school is deeply valued.
We welcome many international students here and I hope you enjoy your studies here and fully experience our culture.
You already know that learning is not confined to the classroom.
I congratulate you on exploring beyond those walls and being prepared to immerse yourself in our culture and learn more about our world.
You bring your own knowledge, culture, values, and language not only to your host schools, but also into our homes.
And we are both enriched by this experience.
As we rapidly become a more global world, these connections will become ever more important.
After I graduated from high school in Adelaide, I went back to school for a year as an exchange student in the Netherlands and while I grappled with the language in the beginning, I found the experience extremely valuable.
Just a fortnight ago I visited my now elderly host parents in our old house and talked about those times, in the late 1970s.
My exchange year gave me new perspectives on life, new ways of seeing and thinking and many rich experiences which have long remained with me.
I hope you will discover the same during your term here.
You will be able to explore what we have in common, our differences, and how we can build connections to mutual respect.
You already know we love sport here, and in Japan you have already seen Australian football games as part of your school program.
I thank the staff from the Jissen Joshi Gakuen School and the Department for Education, the Adelaide schools and homestay families for recognising the importance of this program and working for its success.
I congratulate you the students for embarking on this journey of discovery and hope you will always think fondly of your time here.
I look forward to chatting with you all over morning tea and hearing about what you are looking forward to most.