Having been supported by the robust international mobility of I-Shou University and subsidies from the Ministry of Education, the Department of Creative Product Design under the College of Communication and Design entered into summer internship agreements with four enterprises in Japan, including Roots, Mocca, Soni Experience, and KES, and sent nine students to Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, and Hyogo, respectively, to undertake internships. After living overseas for more than one month, these students not only recharged but also enjoyed an eye-opening experience.
Mu-Hua Hsu, Tzu-Hui Chao, and Ching Hung, undertaking internships at Roots in Kyoto, were responsible for designing and making traffic signs and furniture. During the internship, they realized that a good product must be beautiful and practical. Moreover, local cultures should be considered in creating works with stories. Chao said that she dreamed of undertaking an overseas internship when she heard upper classmates share their experience in overseas internships at the first-year orientation. Her dream came true before becoming a senior, and she believed that studying at ISU was the best choice she had ever made. Hsu indicated that ISU provides students with substantial resources to enrich themselves. Therefore, he took an English proficiency test and learned Japanese to earn a chance to go abroad. Through this overseas internship, he met many students from around the world and opened up his horizons.
For Ya-Chen Chuang and Yu-Chi Huang, who undertook internships at Mocca, what impressed them the most was creating cultural and creative products and woodworking with colleagues. From sourcing wood to designing and making handmade bowls, they found that a simple wooden bowl could not have been made without detailed finishes and skilled crafts, and this is the uncompromising and relentless pursuit of perfection respected by Japanese craftsmen. Tzu-Hsien Hsu and Tsai-Chun Tuan visited local attractions, experienced humanistic cultures in Nara, and transformed everything they saw into creative inspirations. They not only painted pictures but made guidebooks and other products incorporating local features.
Pei-Tzu Huang and Tzu-An Li at KES even brought their A-game to catch customers’ eye with metal fruit forks inspired by a Chinese fortune sticks container. Dr. Tun-Hsueh Chan, the Chair of the Department of Creative Product Design, was gratified to witness the effort and growth of these students under his guidance in Japan because, with this valuable opportunity, these students were able to experience overseas lives, expand their horizons, and even accumulate experience in working at international enterprises. All these takeaways will be their competitive edge in the global workplace.