Year 13 graduate Shun Miyake from Kobe, Japan, lives for rugby.
Three years boarding in Richards House, however, have honed his skills in much more as well.
“When I arrived I could understand English, but hardly speak it. Now I think in English. I don’t speak much Japanese here at all. Without a doubt the language was the most difficult thing for me and feeling confident to speak took time, probably at least a year.”
Nervous when he arrived, he found the campus very impressive and the routines well organised.
“It didn’t take long to feel welcome and at home, and once rugby training started I made mates straight away.”
He’s achieved all his goals within the school rugby programme, making the 1st XV and playing 50 games for College.
College rugby trips have been highlights, but he also enjoyed playing T20 social cricket in Years 12 and 13 and tennis in Year 11.
“I’ve made some really good friends here, and I always hang out with the local boys.”
Fitting in was made so much easier by having the International Student Manager on hand.
“Deanne Gath is amazing. She looks after all the international guys and does an exceptional job.”
Shun plans to study sports coaching at the University of Canterbury and to play rugby for the UC Club.
“My main goal now is to make the U19 Canterbury team.”