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Students Embark on Japan-Asean Exchange

Twenty Cambodian high school delegates left for Japan Monday, participants of a 10-day exchange trip with other Southeast Asian students.

In a program sponsored by the Japanese government, top students from high schools in Kampot and Takeo provinces and Phnom Penh were chosen by their directors to take place in the program.

“This program is very important for the Cambodian youth to exchange experience, culture, traditions, and customs among Asean youth and Japanese youth, for development and peace,” Phan Sokim, director-general of the Ministry of Education, said.

“All the Cambodian delegates need knowledge, understanding and experience from Asean countries and Japan, to develop themselves and the country,” Phan Sokim said. “This program is a high-value opportunity—a golden opportunity, a diamond opportunity—for the future of Cambodia’s youth.”

The students will visit sites and local communities in Japan, participating in “various exchange events with Japanese youth and citizens, including home-stays, school visits and workshop[s],” the Japanese Embassy said in a statement.

“When I arrive in Japan, I will know how the Japanese live, their cultures, traditions and customs and other experiences from Japan,” Kampot high school student Hem Reach Sovann, 17, told VOA Khmer ahead of his trip Monday.

“I want to know what the differences are in the education systems of the two countries,” he said. “I also can bring some experience of modern technology from Japan to tell my schoolmates.”

Koy Vichny, 17, a delegate from Takeo province, said she would show other students aspects of Angkor Wat and ancient Khmer dance.

“I hope that I can get some experience and culture and knowledge from those countries too,” she said.