Carrie Bee Hao is studying a Masters in Business Law at Hitotsubashi University. She speaks with about her experience.


Studying is never a waste of time, says Carrie Bee Hao, a Filipino-Chinese student currently studying in Japan. If you're at a point in your life when you are tired of working, you think there is little or no room for advancement at your current job and you want to experience student life once again, I think taking up a Masters degree is a good solution.

Carrie Bee has taken leave from her law firm in Manila for at least three years, while she studies for an LLM. My main speciality in my law firm is intellectual property law and getting an LLM after a few years of practice is the usual career path for most lawyers in the Philippines - 90% go to the US for their LLM but I wanted to go somewhere rather unusual. I also wanted a program that is really specialized and has a more practical and business-wise approach. Japan is very advanced with respect to intellectual property law - likewise, it has a very complicated, yet challenging corporate law structure in place, which is something I would like to study as well.

Studying for her graduate degree in Japan has allowed Carrie Bee to become fluent in advance Japanese - the level of Japanese required for law. She is confident this will make her more desirable for employment as she is now multilingual in English, Chinese, Japanese, Spanish and Filipino.

I believe that the point of graduate study is two things: a) to further deepen your knowledge and skills on a specific field of study in relation to your profession, which will more likely lead to better career opportunities, and b) to create or increase your network all around the world that might lead you to your dream job sooner.

Most importantly, you will gain a lot with the connections you will make during your program so your networking skills will also improve during that time. The experience alone of applying [for your graduate degree], waiting for the results and knowing that you have been accepted is an experience by itself! she says.