Dear Readers,


I am your IMS intern of the semester, Reina.


As February approaches to an end, and with the constant change in the weather,  it is unclear whether winter is still here to stay or spring awaits right around the corner.  


In the office, however, the workflow has been constantly busy.  It is at a time where a new fiscal year is ahead of us and requests of varieties of visas have been coming and going.  As an intern, helping sorting out and translating related documents, I’ve become aware of the difficulties visas could consist.  Even the most common of American visas — B1/B2 visas could involve a series of tedious paperwork and procedures depending on the client’s background.  


One of the most recent and memorable learnings in the office is the details and requirements of the US Visa Waiver Program (VWP).  As of 2009, there are 38 Visa Waiver countries with the US, which allows passport holders from the listed countries to enter the US for visitor or business purposes without a visa as long as it is within 90 days, under a certain condition.  These conditions include: a clear criminal history, have not traveled to the following countries post March 1, 2011: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, or Yemen, or are not dual nationals with the countries mentioned previously, etc..  Although it cannot be waived, these individuals could still apply for a visa and go through the process.  I found this system particularly interesting, as I have never thought of the existence of this program although I have been in service of this program whilst traveling abroad.  


On a side note, on the school side of things, this past week has been midterm exam week at Temple University Japan.  I have yet to figure out as to why the education system generally thinks it is a good idea to have midterms for all classes in one week.  I have happily finished two of my economics midterms, though I still have an International Law exam as well as a significantly important economics presentation to finish this week.  


One of my economics classes is a writing seminar based on a research paper, to which I have decided to dedicate my semester on researching the economic impacts of Brexit and trade options for the UK as well as for the rest of the world.  Due to the fact that the event has no previous examples, there is nothing but uncertainty in the UK’s political and economic future – which I find fascinating.  The more I research, trying to find answers of the future, the more I realize that it could go both ways: the UK could have potential of more economic growth in the long run, or the unfortunate result of being worse-off than when the UK was part of the EU.  Though a hectic task, I am looking forward to coming to a solid conclusion of my own when I finish this research paper.  


Sincerely yours,

Reina Tanizaki