12 second year students and a lecturer, Mr Goh Chee Pieu, from the Diploma of Civil Engineering with Business (DCEB) embarked on an 8-day educational trip to Oita Prefecture on the 28th of September 2015.
We had the opportunity to learn from Oita National College of Technology (ONCT), Oita Prefectural Office, Nippon Steel Factory, Kokonoe Yumi Bridge and tour the prefecture, visting Taketa city spring water, Jigoku, Ogatamachi Baba, Bungoono.
The Department of Civil Engineering at ONCT facilitated an interesting laboratory lesson on Coagulation-Sedimentation whilst out-of-classroom learning took place through visits to the Kokonoe Yumi Bridge and the Nippon Steel Factory.
The visit to the Oita Prefectural Office was instructive as we learnt how natural disasters such as landslides, earthquakes and tsunamis are tackled to minimise destruction to infrastructure and the loss of lives. We also observed how Japan protects its structures against earthquake damage by using springs and rollers at the foundation level.
“When in Rome, live like the Romans” We did not experience the eight days as tourists but lived in the shoes of the Japanese. ONCT opened its doors and accommodated us in the college’s dormitory where we learnt to live exactly like the Japanese students - diligently following the rules, schedules and curfews.
In addition to the very insightful experience, ONCT students and professors brought us to OPAM, Oita Prefecture Arts Museum, and other locations with beautiful natural scenic views.
We were amazed by the beauty of nature and understood the value of taking good care of the environment.
As we reflected on the study trip, we realised how fortunate we are to be living in Singapore and studying at Singapore Polytechnic. We are very thankful for the experience. The trip made us better appreciate the different areas of Civil Engineering. Most importantly, the trip taught us to persevere into becoming a Global Citizen, making and caring for the entire world whilst making a difference.