“I’m trying to be the next Middle Eastern doctor in Japan. There’s only one so far. He’s Egyptian like me. And he’s famous. He practically inspired me to come back to Japan to pursue my career as a physician, even though I have to overcome a big obstacle—the language. I was actually here until I was seven years old so Japanese is my first language. But my family moved around and I had forgotten how to speak it since it’s not really used outside Japan. Right now I’m an MD-PhD student in Tokyo and my biggest challenge is to pass the highest level of proficiency test if I want to practice medicine. I know there are American or British doctors who work here. But they’re only allowed to treat foreigners, not Japanese patients. It’s really hard. You have to master medical terms in another language. Sometimes I feel like giving up. Sometimes I get depressed. What keeps me going is the support that I get from family and friends, and seeing other fellow foreigners doing their own thing. Plus I think if you really want something and you’re ambitious enough, you’ll get it no matter what. Guess I’ll just have to be more Japanese.”

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Finding diversity and inclusion. Breaking down barriers one post at a time. Stories and snapshots of foreigners making their way in Japan.

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