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Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options. If you have already started an application for this program, please use the LOGIN (USD applicants) or NON-USD LOGIN link above.
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Fact Sheet:
Housing Options: Dormitory Minimum GPA: 3.0
Term: Academic Year City: Otaru
Country: Japan USD Scholarships: Coyote Commitment, Mickelson Scholarship, Presidential-Alumni Scholarship, South Dakota Opportunity, Ullyot Scholarship
National/Non-USD Scholarships: JASSO Scholarship Language Prerequisite: None
Language of Instruction: English
Program Advisor:
Virginija Wilcox
Program Description:

   USD STUDY ABROAD Direct Programs
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Otaru, Japan

The YOUC Program at Otaru University of Commerce is a one-year program taught in English, based on an agreement for credit transfer between Otaru University of Commerce and USD. The program offers an opportunity to study business and economics subjects related to Japan and Asia-Pacific. The program also provides three levels of Japanese language instruction as well as other liberal arts subjects.
Otaru, Japan
Otaru University
Application Process
Academic Year
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Otaru, Japan

Known as an elite university in Japan, Otaru University is located in northern Japan.  Otaru is a port city situated in the region of Hokkaido and is a popular tourist destination due to its many historical buildings, including a canal lined with Victorian-style street lamps. Many students opt to visit Sapporo, which is the biggest city in the region; Sapporo offers shopping (specializing in glassware and music boxes) and arenas for music concerts.

Access to the rest of Japan, including Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima, and all points in-between, is easily accomplished from the local train station or the Sapporo airport. Japan has much to offer students, including seeing the various Shrines of Ise, trying out Japanese karaoke, and sampling the multitudes of different types of sushi. 

Otaru University of Commerce

The YOUC program (Year at Otaru University of Commerce) is a specially-designed program for international students to pursue business and Japanese language and cultural courses in English. The program is intended primarily for upper-class business students as the majority of courses, including Japanese Companies in Global Business, Marketing Strategy in Asia and Pacific, and International Economics Seminar, will be upper-division courses. Students also have the option of pursuing Japanese language and culture courses as well as exercise and sports classes.

Information on the YOUC program:  Otaru PDF Syllabus / Website



While at Otaru University, USD students will have access to the full range of student organizations and student-oriented services. Students will receive a local student ID which allows them access to university facilities and activities. Many students enjoy the weather and the accompanying outdoor activities; northern Japan is known for its exceptional skiing.

Ashley_VolcanoDoering_Machu PicchuLucia VigoMihulka_Italy
"Beyond my work experience at the US Embassy Madrid, I was able to use my weekends to travel both within Spain and internationally, as well. I visited Seville, Spain; Amsterdam, the Netherlands; Valencia, Spain; Benidorm, Spain; and Frankfurt, Germany during my time.”  -Lucia Carlson 2014

"My experience abroad was the greatest experience of my life. Being suddenly dropped in a country where I didn't speak the language was thrilling. I loved every second of my semester, and I can't wait to go back soon... Why not gain the experience every employer looks for while having the greatest experience of your life!”  -Rachel Mihulka 2013

"Studying abroad and living with a host-family in a foreign country gives students an entirely new perspective and appreciation for other people and cultures around the world.” -Michael Doering 2014

"I tried to come up with a quote to accurately sum up my study abroad experience but established I couldn't. I realized that trying to pick just one excerpt out of the semester of a lifetime is like trying to count the stars. No matter how hard you try you will always get lost in its vast beauty and wonder.”  -Olivia Moede 2013

"Going abroad was everything I expected and much more. I did not expect this experience to affect me as positively as it did.”  -Erica Moore 2014

"This was an amazing [study abroad] trip, one that every college student must do or at least put on their to do list because you never know when you will get the chance to go to a new exotic place and put yourself in the locals shoes and learn about their ways and how they affect your own being.”  -Nickie Luhmann 2014


Students can choose to live in a single or a double room in the International House located 10 minutes from the university campus. USD students will be living with the other international students who are participating in the program; these students come from a variety of different countries, including Germany, Iceland, China, France, Spain, New Zealand, Australia, and Vietnam.   The rooms within the International House come equipped with a kitchen and bathroom. Students have access to local grocery stores and inexpensive student cafeterias; the university does not offer meal plans.


Otaru University is a USD Direct program, which means students will continue to pay USD tuition and fees. Students will continue to receive any federal financial aid (with the exception of federal work/study) and most USD scholarships (Coyote Commitment, Mickelson, Presidential-Alumni, SD Opportunity, and Ullyot).

In the past, there have been two scholarships offered to qualified students interested in this program. These scholarships are intended to cover the tuition cost of this program; one scholarship comes from the Japanese government (JASSO) and the other is a matching scholarship from the USD Business School. These scholarships are not guaranteed every year; students should speak with USD Global Learning about the possibility of receiving one of them. More information and forms for these scholarships can be obtained from the Global Learning office.

Information on the JASSO scholarship

Explore our interactive budget calculator for this program:
- Otaru, Japan Academic Year Budget Estimator


Application Process

USD students must complete the Global Learning application before being nominated to Otaru University. Students will work in conjunction with overseas staff to coordinate their arrival in the Japan, course registration, and housing.

Academic Year

This program is only offered on an academic year basis. 

Academic Year       Late September to early August


KNOW Before You GO: Resources for Smart Travelers

Rick Steve's Packing Tips!

Looking for a Flight?
STA Travel: e-mail to talk over flight options with an advisor
* Book now pay later with STA Travel’s Airfare Deposit Program. A $300 deposit will guarantee your flight with full payment due 7 days before your flight. On financial aid? You may qualify for special extended payment terms.
** Make a study abroad appointment today and receive a $25.00 flight voucher good for any STA Travel purchase!


This program is currently not accepting applications.