Japanese TV Reporter, Yuri Kato, studies at St Giles New York City
Yuri is a B1 Intermediate student studying at St Giles New York City. She comes from Tokyo, Japan and is a freelance reporter who previously worked for Tokyo’s ZIP! Morning TV programme before coming to New York to study English.
When did you first become a reporter and what drew you to the profession?
At first, I had no intention of becoming a reporter. I wanted to be an actress, but about five years ago, I auditioned for a reporter position and got the job. I found the job difficult at first, but also very interesting since it allowed me to speak with many famous people. The more people I interviewed, the desire to continue as a reporter grew and grew. Over the past five years, I’ve had the opportunity to go to several Red Carpet events, both in Tokyo and in Hollywood, and I’ve met and interviewed several celebrities, including Keanu Reeves, Chloe Grace Moretz, Avril Lavigne, Guillermo del Toro, J. J. Abrams, Angelina Jolie, and Chris Hemsworth. All of them were always so kind and I wanted to be able to speak with them directly; however, my inability to communicate in English prevented me from doing so. This is and has been my greatest regret while working as a reporter. This regret, in fact, is the main reason I wanted to learn English. I hope to some day be able to interview them again and be able to speak directly with them instead of through an interpreter.
When you first decided to come to NYC, what were your first thoughts?
Well, I didn’t really want to come to NYC at first. I wanted to go somewhere on the west coast of the U.S., maybe San Francisco or Los Angeles because I knew they would be warmer in the winter. Unfortunately, I don’t have a driver’s license, so this led me towards my decision to come to NYC. I knew the public transportation would be so much easier here.
What were your first impressions of NYC?
That’s funny, I was so scared! My first day in NYC was Halloween. So many people were dressed in costumes and a lot of them kept screaming at me, trying to scare me. They’d be like, “AAARRGH,” and I wanted to run away!
What are you most excited to do as a tourist?
I love museums and New York has a lot of them. I’ve already been to the Metropolitan, the Guggenheim, and the Whitney. They were all wonderful! I’m planning to go to the MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) this weekend and I’m really excited!
What are you most excited to do as a student?
Making friends! This is the first time since university that I’ve had the opportunity to make international friends, and this is the first time I’ll be able to do that using English as my primary language.
What do you think will be your greatest challenge in school?
This is too difficult to answer. Everything is challenging: I need to better understand the verb tenses so that I can use the new vocabulary so that I can practice speaking it all so that I can work on my pronunciation! However, what I truly want is to eventually be able to achieve a near native ability. I know this will take a lot of work and time, but I’m ready for it.
What is your dream job when you return to Japan?
I want to continue as a reporter, and I have two people I’d love to interview: Jennifer Lawrence and Lily Collins. I really like them and think that they would be very cool, but I don’t want to interview them in Japanese with an interpreter. I want to be able to interview them in English!
Learn more about studying English in New York City with St Giles!