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The diverse instructors, all creative artists with extensive teaching and professional experiences, provided attentive mentorship to each student. They engaged in their daily assignments enthusiastically with a tireless, hard-working attitude in order to make the most of their learning opportunities.Their sincere passion for learning really impressed me – as time went by, my admiration grew, and I eagerly anticipated their next steps when they removed their student hats, hoping to use their creative talents to join the real-world workforce in Japan.This low rate of illegitimacy results from an aggressive use of contraceptives, mainly the condom, and different cultural attitudes about abortion.
Nowadays, the double-income household model struggles to become a new standard in society, especially in metropolitan areas, but women’s overall employment situation has not dramatically changed.
The OECD also reports that Japan is the worst country regarding wage penalty for women having children: once they leave the workplace on maternity leave, women are often not allowed to return to the same positions, and are typically forced to work in low paying, part-time alternatives.
”Once I’ve setteled as an office worker like many women in Japan before me, I will be forced to repeat boring tasks, staying in the same position until I quit.
My life will almost end there.” Even though they felt fully-charged via their eye-opening-cultural exchanges with the workshop mentors, there seemed to be no place in their Japan where they could utilize their passion and vision.
The two generation nuclear family consisting of the parents and their unmarried children has become the popular model of the modern family in Japan, as it was in America decades ago.
Typically, with the low fertility rate in Japan, these households are relatively small with two, or only one, child living together with the parents.
Recently ranked 101 out of 145 nations (just ahead of Swaziland) in gender gap ratings according to the World Economic Forum, Japan is a world loser for gender equality. Japan’s National Tax agency in 2013 reported that the average salary of men is 502 million yen, while women stand at 268 million yen.
These gender gap realities are the remains of the “housewives” era that continues to dominate in our culture, a working culture in which companies regard female employees as unreliable in the long run, and thus place women into replaceable positions since women employees tend to quit the workforce upon marriage, pregnancy or with the subsequent tasks of child-raising.
Although the frustrated voices in this case came up from women, these problems really illuminate a larger problem within the nation’s entire workforce, a work/ life imbalance that must be addressed to enable fair working conditions for all. In the United Nations Inclusive Wealth Report in 2012, Japan received high scores in “human capital” wealth.
The nation’s educational standard is high– almost half of adults finished a higher level of education than high school, and about 83% of them obtain full time employment afterwards.