ICU has three gender separated undergraduate dormitories, two for women and one for men. The Housing Office assists in all dormitory assignments, and it is the student officers who make the final decision. Each dormitory consists of about 80% Japanese students coming from different places in Japan and overseas, and about 20% non-Japanese students. It is dormitory policy to mix nationalities, not to segregate them, in assigning rooms which accommodate two persons. New students will be assigned to double rooms (single rooms at Canada House are basically for Junior and Senior students).
When you meet requirements as a dormitory resident, and come to understand proper conduct in Japan, life in the dormitories will provide you with an excellent opportunity to study and experience Japanese culture, the importance of interpersonal relationships, group solidarity and the vertical structure in Japanese society.
The atmosphere in the dormitories has been cultivated over the years and, from the view point of Japanese and non-Japanese regular students, is based on being together for the entire four-year period of university life. Therefore, if you are at ICU only for one or two years, you need to be aware of an expectation and be willing to work for group harmony in your dormitory in order to get the most out of your dormitory experience.
You are advised to think through your ability to accept cultural differences before applying for dormitory housing. For example, private space and public space can be thought of differently depending on one’s cultural background, and it may be very difficult for you to share limited space with people from other cultural backgrounds. You may be asked to make a compromise on different occasions in your dormitory life.
The dormitories vary in size and style of construction. The atmosphere of the dormitory also varies according to the characteristics of each dormitory and the residents’ ability to work together for the good of all. As about 80% of the residents are Japanese, management of the dormitories tends to be predominantly Japanese.
There are many activities within a dormitory and among the undergraduate dormitories which are planned by students for their enjoyment and to promote friendship among students. Examples of activities include, welcoming events for new students, the annual dormitory festival, and sports games. Participation in these events is voluntary, but dormitory residents will certainly have different experiences from those living off campus.