New GROW Program Interns!

Three students from Colombia started to be part of the GROW Program! They are Mariana Friedrich, Estefanía Ruiz and Camilo Abello, students from Los Andes University. The three students were awarded with a partial one-year exchange scholarship at Yamanashi Gakuin University, in Kofu, Japan, in order to deepen their knowledge in Japanese language and culture. During their stay at GOROM Association, they will support the Communications and Logistics Areas of the Association, as well as local partner producers. You can find below a short presentation of each student.



Hello, I’m Mariana Friedrich. I am majoring in Languages and Culture at Los Andes University in Colombia, and I am currently an exchange student at Yamanashi Gakuin University. I really like to do sports, especially calisthenics. I also love reading.

I think this program is an opportunity to get out of my comfort zone and learn new things. Also, the opportunity to be able to translate from Japanese into different languages is very valuable to me. I feel that I will finish this program having many more tools to be able to forge the career path I want.


I am Estefania Ruiz, a double major in Art and Art History, with a minor in Japanese Language and Culture at Los Andes University. I am currently on an exchange program at Yamanashi Gakuin University with the Japan Exploration Program of the School of Business Administration.

Since I was a child I have dedicated my life to art, I have been painting for more than a decade and my trajectory includes recognitions from the Congress of the Republic of Colombia, the Association of Plastic Artists of Peru and the Frida Khalo Museum in Mexico. Four years ago, I decided to orient my pictorial research towards the body understood from Japanese culture, focusing on mythology and regional folklore, an impulse that acted as a trigger to apply to this program and come to Japan.

My expectations for this program revolve around deepening my knowledge of culture and history through daily interaction with locals and foreigners in the context of the local wine, jewelry and tourism industry. I want to meet new people to create lasting bonds and learn first hand about the heritage of this region. With this, I wish to be able to do my bit from the knowledge I have cultivated in Colombia and thus be able to share the charm of Yamanashi with the rest of the visitors.


My name is Camilo Abello, I am majoring in Languages and Culture and minoring in Japanese Language and Culture at the Universidad de los Andes. Right now, I am an exchange student at Yamanashi Gakuin University.

I am very interested in foreign languages and cultures, social issues, education and the arts in general. In my free time, I usually enjoy listening to music, doing makeup, sleeping, cooking, watching YouTube videos or walking outdoors. I am also very interested in Shinto, the indigenous religion of Japan.

My expectations for this program are to be able to work in an intercultural environment, to develop my work skills and abilities and, in the same way, to contribute to the education and training of people both in Japan and Latin America. I am very passionate about the media, therefore, I consider this a valuable opportunity to explore this field in more depth and bring a refreshing look to the Communications area within the association.


We wish them much success and we hope to provide them with a valuable experience during their stay.