Eyes, JAPAN Blog > Eyes, JAPAN Employee Interview [Vol. 24]

Eyes, JAPAN Employee Interview [Vol. 24]


The special series to put a spotlight on our international staff, “Eyes, JAPAN employee interview” is back! As we wrap up this year, we are celebrating the two-year milestone of this series! Our 24th interviewee is Zeke Sy from Philippines.

He has been working in Eyes, JAPAN for around 3 months. We wanted to ask Zeke about his life in Japan, why he came to Japan and what does he think about working in Eyes, JAPAN.

(Interviewer: Angie)

Loves to Play Sports

What is your favorite thing about your home country / home town?

Zeke: My favorite thing is the food for sure. Not only do I love Filipino food, such as sisig, adobo, lechon etc., but Philippines also has a lot of other restaurants that sell lots of different cuisines e.g. Italian, Japanese, Korean etc. so there is always a lot of choices to pick from.

Why did you come to Japan and what do you like about Japan?

Zeke: I love the culture and the country itself. I have visited a few times before and I always enjoyed the atmosphere and the people here. So, I thought why not and applied to the University of Aizu to get my computer science degree and I have greatly enjoyed my time here so far.

What do you think about life in Aizu?

Zeke: Since I lived in the capital city in the Philippines, I actually really enjoyed the calmness and the relaxing atmosphere in a smaller town like Aizu. I felt like it was very easy to transition into a new life in a different country because there is a such a great and welcoming community here. I also love the scenic beauty around the town because it wasn’t something I could see very often in Manila.

What is your hobby and how do you usually spend your weekends or holidays?

Zeke: I would say my hobby is playing sports. I played a few in high school and I enjoy playing with friends and having friendly competitions with each other. I also really like to listen to music or play video games specifically a game called Dota. It is one way I can still connect and keep in touch with my friends around the world.

Zeke: For weekends, I do enjoy travelling of course, but after a long week of work, relaxing on the weekends is my favorite thing to do. I usually just hang out with my friends and do a bit of sport which is always fun.

What is your academic background and what kind of research are you doing or have you done before?

Zeke: I am a 4th year student now in the University of Aizu and currently I have been researching a relatively new topic called Neural Radiance Fields. It is a novel method in representing 3D scene implicitly within a MLP in contrast to other explicit representation such as voxel grids or meshes.

Do you have any things or skills that you are proud of?

Zeke: I am quite proud of the fact that I was able to represent my country in rugby and compete at the highest level in a few different sports. Moreover, I am quite proud of the fact that I was able to fund and pay for all my expenses in Japan so far.

EJ’s Apple Picking Party: Extremely Fun and Interesting

How did you know about Eyes, JAPAN, and why did you decide to join?

Zeke: I heard about Eyes, JAPAN from a few friends who have previously or are still working at the company. I only heard great things about the company and I thought it would be a perfect opportunity for me to improve my practical skills and learn a lot from the experienced people in the company.

What kind of projects have you been working on in Eyes Japan?

Zeke: I have been working on the Android PD application where I have been developing the mostly the front-end of the application and currently testing and fixing any bugs that needs to be fixed.

Could you let us know about your most memorable project in Eyes, JAPAN?

Zeke: Since I haven’t been working here very long, I think my most memorable project is the Android PD application as it was great to see the initial version of the project look very good and work well so I definitely felt proud to have created it.

Which customs in Eyes, JAPAN do you like the most?

Zeke: I think the yearly apple picking tradition is extremely fun. The reason and past behind how it started is interesting and it is always enjoyable to talk and hang out with the members of Eyes Japan.

What do you think about your colleagues and the working environment in Eyes, JAPAN?

Zeke: I think my colleagues are very experienced and friendly so I get along with them very well. They also are continuously teaching me new things and I am learning a lot from them. Also, I think the working environment is great, it is a very open and accommodating atmosphere in the sense that I can always ask for help and I won’t ever feel bad for not knowing something. I believe this type of atmosphere really initiates a lot of good discussions between the employees and also helps everyone develop their skills and knowledge.

What do you think about working at the company and working at home?

Zeke: I enjoy working at the company as most people there are my friends so it is always nice to see them. Moreover, it’s easier to have discussions with people when I am there. However, my tasks don’t really require my close collaboration with the other members in the team so in terms of efficiency and productivity, I don’t think its affected if I work at home.

What kind of problems or challenges have you faced while working in Eyes, JAPAN, and how did you solve it?

Zeke: Working on the front-end mobile application was very new to me. I have not worked on android development or front-end before so both fields were new areas. However, I do have quite a lot of experience in Java so the programming language itself was not a problem but getting used to the work-flow when programming in a team is something I don’t have much experience is so I had to learn how to do that as well. I overcame these challenges through self-study and asking for help quite often especially from Tang-san and Maneesha. They explained my tasks extremely well and once I got the hang of it, I think working on the project has been smooth and I don’t need their help as much.

Dream: To Start a Company in Philippines

Can you give some pros and/or cons of working at a Japanese company?

Zeke: Personally, I haven’t worked in other places besides Eyes Japan so my knowledge is quite limited. The pros mainly involve life outside the company I believe. Just the benefits and pros of living in Japan is great. Moreover, compared to my country the minimum wage is much higher hence why I aim to work here. The cons would be possibly the work culture, a lot of scary stories about people being overworked and exploited. However, this is definitely not a issue in Eyes Japan and from friends who are working now on other Japanese companies, I haven’t heard anything negative about it yet so I am only speaking generally.

How do you balance your working and private time?

Zeke: I balance it by trying my best to try to keep my weekends free by finishing all my work during the week. Of course, this is usually not possible but I also still try to finish my work during the daytime so in the evenings after dinner I won’t have anything more to do. To do this, I think it’s important to set achievable goals for the day and for the week.

What motivates you to keep working and studying?

Zeke: I think my family is my biggest motivation. Of course, I have things I want to achieve for myself but they have sacrificed a lot for me to have such a golden opportunity and I think my feeling of responsibility to not waste this opportunity is a stronger motivator for me than personal gain.

Any advice for people who wants to work in Japan?

Zeke: I think really learning about the culture and language here would be quite beneficial. There are not many companies like Eyes Japan which doesn’t really require the need to speak Japanese. The international companies are definitely more competitive so being able to speak the language will help broaden the range of companies you will be able to apply for.

What kind of projects do you want to work on in the future?

Zeke: Hopefully in the future I wish to start working on AI projects as well. I am extremely interested in the other applications of it, specifically the medical applications which we already have a few projects on.

Lastly, what is your dream?

Zeke: My dream goal is to start my own company in the Philippines and try to develop the technology there. I wish to help people in the Philippines in any way that I can, I understand that I am one of the lucky few and I genuinely believe that I have been given these blessings to help share it.

Thank you!

If you are interested in Eyes, JAPAN and would like to hear other stories, please do not hesitate to contact us at the following contact form.

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Everyone welcome.

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