’23 New Arrivals – First Up Toyo B!!


We’re kicking off this year’s series of Unbeaten Paths with introductions from our new arrivals in Toyo B!! I always find it fascinating and inspiring to read about folks’ journey to discovering and ultimately coming on the JET program and their different ways of exploring this whole being-in-Japan experience. There really is no one-way to get here nor one-way to do it :,)

I hope you all enjoy getting to know the new faces around Ehime as much as I have while watching these introductions roll in for the blog. Thank you to all of these folks for contributing their time and sharing about themselves. Let’s give them a warm welcome!

Ruby Punt


Before joining the JET programme I was working at a charity in London called Headliners UK. I was leading two projects and working with vulnerable young people, empowering them to challenge social issues using multimedia. Prior to this, I finished my MA in Comparative Literature.


I’m an avid reader so I’m planning to spend a lot of down time catching up on reading. I enjoy outdoor activities such as bouldering and hiking. I’m excited to travel around Japan and try new things too.


Moving-to-Japan Mood Playlist: songaku

Charlene Mae Corsino


In the Philippines, I used to be an English teacher. I have taught senior high school students for a year and Japanese students online for four years. I have always been interested in Japan because of the cherry blossoms. My friends, professors, and even my Japanese students have been bugging me to apply as a teacher here. And it was last year when I finally decided to try. Now, I am looking forward to exploring the wonders of Japan.

My hobbies are traveling, cooking, and visiting museums. I’m interested in learning how to cook Japanese food and doing outdoor activities like hiking. I also want to experience Japanese culture through their festivals.

Moving-to-Japan Mood Playlist: I’m in Japan.

Devin Powell


As a Finance major in University, teaching in Japan was something I definitely didn’t see myself doing, until I visited Japan for vacation in 2022. It was then I realized I didn’t want to settle down just yet with a corporate job in the States, but wanted to see what different perspectives I could find around the world. And so, here I am 🙂

I really enjoy playing basketball, so I am excited to be a part of the basketball club at school and potentially join a regional team. I also love hiking, and what better place to do so in than Ehime, as well as Japan in general.

Moving-to-Japan Mood Playlist: konbini confessions

Allen Nguyen


Hey everybody! My name is Allen, and I’m a 24-year-old ALT stationed in Shikokuchuo. I’m from Garden Grove, California, and I studied at California State University, Long Beach. In university, I majored in Asian Studies, minoring in both Japanese Language and Culture and Translation Studies. My plan is to eventually go to graduate school and become a university professor, but I didn’t want to go back to school just yet. Instead, my Japanese professor recommended I join the JET program since it provided a perfect opportunity to not only live in Japan but to also gain some valuable work experience as a teacher.

I’m a huge fan of sports, and I’ve met so many people here already who share that same passion. Since I’m from Southern California, many Japanese people are already aware of some of the teams and players I’m a fan of (Shohei Ohtani on the Los Angeles Angels, Rui Hachimura on the Los Angeles Lakers). That’s been a great tool in bridging my interests to the interests of my Japanese colleagues. I’m hoping to be able to go to sports games here and immerse myself in fan culture here.

As a self-proclaimed nerd, I love a lot of Japanese pop culture, especially video games. I’ve been playing JRPGs for as long as I can remember. My first game ever was Pokémon Yellow on the Game Boy Color. And of course like every other nerd here, I watch my fair share of anime. I’m hoping that my childish interests can help create a bond with my students, and it seems likely given all the conversations I’ve heard about Jujutsu Kaisen.

One activity I’m very much looking forward to here is karaoke. We have a lot of karaoke spots in California, but my friends back home weren’t really interested in it. So I’m excited since it seems to be a common hangout spot here. I can’t wait to try to sing my heart out to ZUTOMAYO and YOASOBI songs before realizing my Japanese is really not that good and resorting back to singing Carly Rae Jepsen and Linkin Park.

Ehime prefecture, and Shikoku as a whole, looks amazingly beautiful. Every time I travel to a new location I’m taken aback by all the sights. While I’m here, I’m definitely going to try to explore all the nature that I can.

Josh Meyers


Hi everyone, I’m Josh. I’m from Northern California. Before JET, I was a college student at University of California Santa Cruz, studying game design. I’ve wanted to JET since high school, when I did a home stay near Okayama and met an ALT who told me all about the program. I’ve always had a particular interest in teaching, and thought it would be a smart and fun idea to get a general taste of the work before committing to more school to do it in the states. No particularly round about path or anything like that. I started the application process during my fourth and final year of college, and got accepted and started working the same year I graduated.

I like hiking, video games, drawing, cooking and card games mostly. I’ll usually try and go to a card game tournament over the weekend and just relax or walk around Shikokuchuo whenever I have free time, or simply do nothing and sleep because I’m tired after work. There’s a few must hit spots for me in Shikoku and Japan as a whole, but I’m not in a huge rush to go see them right away, I’d rather get use to the work and energy level before pushing myself to do anything extra.

Moving-to-Japan Mood Playlist: Good Vibes Japan Playlist

Erin Hahn


Before coming to the JET Program, I was a substitute teacher. My dream job is to teach ESL, so this program was the perfect next step towards that goal. Plus, I’ve always been interested in Japanese culture! I’m really excited for all the festivals in particular.

When I’m not at work (or napping), I like to spend my time practicing my Japanese, doing music, traveling, and playing video games. I have a huge collection of Barbie games in particular: 93 and counting!

Jordan Lorenzo


I was an elementary school teacher for 6 years before coming to JET. I was beginning to feel a little stagnant, and I was ready to try something new. I love teaching and I have always been interested in Japanese culture so coming to Japan made sense as something new to try. The thought of moving to a new country by myself scared me, but that is when I knew it was something I needed to do.

I like to game, I am very big on Team Fight Tactics. I also like to dance (hip hop). I am looking to explore as much food as I can in Japan.

Moving-to-Japan Mood Playlist: Moving On

Justin Dobbs

Before coming to Japan I was doing marketing for an outdoor brand. However, on my breaks I got into the habit of watching travel videos and randomly clicked on an Abroad in Japan video. After digging into it further I found out that he got his start by being on the JET program. This was the first time I had heard about the program and I didn’t join right away. However, it did motivate me to self-study Japanese and eventually led me to apply about a year later. Basically, I can thank my boring marketing job for helping me discover Japan.

I’m really into cycling so the obvious choice is the Shimanami Kaido. But, I also want to explore all the unique trails (cycling or otherwise) around Japan. I also really want to see my favorite Ska band “Tokyo Ska Paradice Orchestra” live if I get the chance.

Moving-to-Japan Mood Playlist:

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