Marianas Variety

Last updateWed, 19 Dec 2018 12am







    Monday, December 17, 2018-5:55:26A.M.






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Guardian of Japanese students on Saipan needs help

KAZUNORI Nakamura owns Job Market USA Corporation, a consulting firm that also serves Japanese students who study on Saipan.

In an email to Variety, Nakamura said his U.S. visa and that of his educational counselor Mayumi Moriyama are still pending and if they are not able to return to Saipan, the Japanese students who are here will have to leave the island.

Nakamura, who had to leave Saipan in September following the expiration of his visa, serves as guardian of the Japanese students.

“My company [makes arrangements] for Japanese students to study in Saipan. I’m the guardian of those Japanese students. We live together in Dandan. I, and Mayumi Moriyama, an educational counselor had an interview at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo on Sept. 27th. We were told that our visas were still pending. We are contacting the embassy every week, but their answer is always the same. Our visas are still under administrative processing,” Nakamura said.

“We are working very hard for education…in Saipan. Our mission is opening an opportunity for Japanese children to be educated in Saipan. Our vision is to [revive the] old NMI where Japanese and Chamorros cooperate and live on a beautiful island. If I am not able to go back to Saipan, those Japanese children will have no chance to get an education in Saipan. Those students who are living in Saipan will have to leave. We have more than 10 Japanese children who are waiting for our visas,” he said.

Nakamura said in his 12 years of doing business in the CNMI, this is the first time that he has experienced difficulty in getting a visa to Saipan.

Nakamura was here on a CW-1 permit while the students have an F1 visa and are enrolled at Mount Carmel School.

Nakamura said for 12 years, he has assisted around 100 students who wanted to study abroad, particularly on Saipan.

“Many of them come every year to study in Saipan. Every year, more than 30 students come to Saipan for short-term study. Many schools in Japan are allowing their students to attend short-term study in Saipan,” he said adding that many teachers from Japan also seek training here.

He said the students are from second to 12th grades.

“Please [ask] the U.S. Embassy Tokyo to give us the visas. It’s for the children’s future. They want to study in Saipan. Please do not take their dreams away.”

In an interview on Thursday, Gov. Ralph Torres said:

“My office received Mr. Nakamura’s request along with many more requests of other individuals experiencing similar hardships regarding their inability to remain in our community due to the ongoing CW issues. It is genuinely concerning that our unique community, which has been enriched by cultures and people from around the world, is losing valuable and contributing members of our society. As governor, while I do not have a direct ability to introduce or amend U.S. federal laws to remedy this situation, I am heartened by the support and collaboration I have with U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and have been told that a draft of the legislative fix to the CW issue will be available in the coming days.

“This is a serious and urgent priority for the entire commonwealth, and I intend to continue the ongoing dialogue with our federal partners to ensure our community and our islands can continue to thrive.

“Over the course of my short time as governor, I am proud of the relationships I have built with federal officials both in the administration and Congress, and I will continue to build upon these relationships to see that our community, and the important people that enrich our islands, succeed. As I have always said, foreign workers provide job opportunities for our people and the many U.S. citizens living in the commonwealth, and that each foreign worker is more than a number. They are our friends, our coworkers, and we are much stronger together.”