Hello everyone! This is my first post, so I hope I am welcome here! Anyway, let me get to the reason why I am creating this post: I am going to be studying in Japan, and I have some questions. I know that this is a huge post, but I have italicised the general question so that it is easy to scroll through
To properly answer my questions, I think it would be best to know me. I am from the US, and I am spending my 4/4 year of high school on exchange in Slovakia. Although I am in my 4/4 year, I am going to have to go back and spend another year in the US studying to be able to have the credits to graduate. I return to the US on July 19, 2018. However, I would like to apply to a Japanese university in the fall of this year, and attend the following year. I am looking to study in their English program, in the school of Fundamental Science and Engineering, in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.
I am planning on applying to Waseda university, and I have quite a few questions on the process of it. I have quite a few questions here, and some of them are specific to Waseda. I have separated between the two, so you can just scroll past it if you know nothing of Waseda!
] How strict is the application/admission process, and where is it strict
? What I mean by this, is where do they look at for admission? GPA, SAT, ACT or something else?
] During the application/admission do they look at achievements of the individual/will exceptional achievements help my chances of admission?
For example I am an exchange student, private pilot, boy scout, etc.
] Is it possible for me to get the MEXT scholarship?
I am currently in a position to go into the university privately funded, but I have heard many things about the MEXT scholarship. My issue is, as far as I can tell you need to discuss it with the consulate in your home country. Is it possible to discuss these things over the internet, or is the deadline for it late enough in the year I can do it in person?
] What department would be best for study?
I have heard many things about the university in Japan, about how it's standards are much more lax than in places like the US or Canada. Of course I am going into this fully aware of that, but I would like to make the most of my time/money. Is studying Computer Engineering worthwhile, or should I study another engineering field?
] Are there sports at Waseda?
The sports site is broken in English on the Waseda website, but as far as I can tell, they do offer sports there? I play baseball, run cross country, and was once a fairly successful gymnast. Would I have the opportunity to continue in any of these sports there/would they accept a foreigner on the teams/clubs?
] What are the housing/living expenses like?
I am coming from California, which is a fairly expensive place to live, so is it comparable to there? More? Less? How so?
] Waseda entrance exam?
I am under the impression that most Japanese universities have entrance exams, although I couldn't find any kind of requirement on their website. Do they have an entrance exam, and if so, what is it like?
] What are my chances of being accepted?
I have found this university, because it is the only one I have found that offers studies in Computer Engineering, but it is a fairly prestigious school (#1 private school in Japan if I read correctly). So, basically, what are my chances of getting in? If I were to be applying to American universities, they would look for something like this: GPA, SAT, personal achievements, application letter, letter of recommendation, and maybe some other things I missed. My GPA isn't all too good, 3.3-3.5 by the end of next year, although my SAT score would be fairly decent being anywhere from 1400-1500/1600. Also (not to butter my own bread here but for the purpose of this question I must elaborate), I have had a very active high school life, doing a fair bit of achievements. To summarize: Eagle Scout, Private Glider Pilot (first 4th generation in the world!), 1st All-Around AAU Gymnastics Nationals, Rotary Exchange Student 2017-2018. So, with all of these things into consideration, what would my chances of entering be? Because of my fairly low GPA, should I look into a less-prestigious university, or will my other "stats" carry the weight?
] What is the Japanese requirement?
As far as I can tell, there isn't one, but I can never be sure with English translated sites. If there is a Japanese requirement for the school, what might it be, and would it be possible to prepare for it in a years time?
Anyone that has made it this far, you have my many thanks. I have been struggling to find answers to these questions, if I could get these answered, that would be amazing! I will probably add more questions as I think of them, but these are the big boys that I have had on my mind for a while.