UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

2-26-24 PDF
February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

Fundraising for the Land of the Rising Sun


Nishida Izumi graduated from the education program here at UMB and is now a post-graduate in the continuing education program. Izumi hopes to teach special needs students. She came to the US only three years ago.

I asked Izumi how she went about getting the information about the crises in Japan. “At the beginning, when the earthquake happened, I went to the Japanese news website because some news channels were available for us, even when I was in the United States. So, I collected information about the earthquake from Japan.”

Izumi added, “maybe because of the cultural different, if I go to CNN or ABC news, it’s a little bit kind of weird for us, but if I got to the Japanese website or Japanese TV channels they had more kind of preferable information for us because I am still Japanese even though I came here three years ago. I was more comfortable watching the news in Japanese and I could understand in detail if I go to the news in Japanese.”

She spoke also about the changes in her life day to day because of the events. “I was kind of really stable,” Izumi said, “because I knew that my family and friends were okay and also, maybe I made myself to be stable through the experience of the earthquake sixteen years ago. I knew that a lot of things were expected would be happening soon… in the future. I was in Kobe 16 years ago and nobody what was going on in our area even though the earthquake hit a small part of Japan, this time the earthquake damaged a huge area. It was easy for me to [picture] something bigger […] going on there.”

Izumi has had the unique experience of being in a severe, devastating earthquake in Japan before. In 1995, a magnitude 6.9 earthquake, now known as the Great Hanshin Earthquake, struck the highly populated city of Kobe. Well over 5,000 were killed and over 25,000 were injured as well as billions of dollars of damage done.

“I watched TV news almost all day until the end of March.”

Izumi went on to talk about help and support she’d gotten from friends and peers here in the US. “I really want to give my thanks to the community of UMass Boston because a lot of people came and stopped at our table and many people told me ‘is your family okay’ or ‘are you okay,’ and that was very helpful to me being stable and also they encouraged me to keep doing that fundraising.”

Izumi is also doing an internship here so “, not only the UMass community, all the people that know me sent me an email to check that my family was safe. Also, professors sent me emails to check my status, my situation, to see if I was okay. That was so helpful – that means a lot for me.

“I feel safe here,” she added sincerely.

“I felt guilty because they were suffering in the tragic area, the damaged area. Even the people who didn’t get hit by the earthquake or tsunami were suffering because of the nuclear plants. I felt guilty; I was here, I was so safe, and everything was gong very well for me.”

Things are also going very well for the Japan Relief fundraising. At the table alone, at the time of the interview (roughly two and a half weeks ago), Izumi and her fellow volunteers had reached 1000 dollars from contributions from compassionate students, teachers, and other faculty. “I think we are doing very well,” she added. But, “we need continuous help. I really want the communities attention. We will set more events that should be very interesting.” Izumi and Enomoto (along with everyone else helping out) are looking to hold more events in the coming weeks, including (possibly) a lecture and the showing of a film.