Interface Inc. seeks
qualified individuals to help prepare their clients to enter top graduate schools in North
America and Europe. Maki
Nibayashi speaks with
Senior Consultant Robert LeClair to learn more about where Japan' future leaders will
Tell us about your
Interface Inc. is an American-owned and -managed organization that provides "cradle
to grave" training for overseas graduate school applicants (primarily in the fields
of Business, Law, Engineering, International Affairs and Public Administration) and for
people interested in career transition. Since it was established more than ten years ago
by Representative Director Warren Devalier, Interface has become the industry leader in
helping Japanese men and women earn the necessary qualifications to pursue highly
successful professional careers. Our services include: classes in TOEFL, GMAT, and
Writing, as well as strategic advice on gaining admission to the best professional schools
overseas. Our Tokyo office consists of Western consultants supported by a trained Japanese
What key advice would you give Japanese applicants about preparing for graduate
A common but critical mistake that many Japanese make in preparing to enter professional
training programs overseas is trying to do all of their preparation in Japanese. Although
it is natural for people to want to study in their native language, for those aspiring to
enroll in professional programs at the world's leading graduate schools, this is a
We see many "re-applicants" each year - people who applied to graduate schools
the previous year, but failed. A trait commonly found among these people is that they were
not yet willing to "take the plunge" into an English language environment such
as the one they will find at Interface. Instead, they mistakenly assume that one can take
the path of least resistance by remaining in a Japanese language environment and find
their way into a top-level graduate school overseas. Wrong! For those few Japanese who do
manage to bypass the "no pain, no gain" style of English preparation and succeed
in gaining entrance into graduate school, a rude awakening awaits. Such people will find
their sudden immersion into the fast-paced English language academic environment to be
overwhelming, and some of them will not succeed. Our prescription: prepare for future
success in English at Interface!
What positions are you seeking to fill?
We hope to hire talented and committed men and women to work with us here as part-time
consultants to help place our clients in top professional training programs in the world's
leading graduate schools. These positions do NOT involve teaching English.
What skills/responsibilities are required of a consultant at Interface?
The list of required skills for a successful consultant is a long one. The most important
abilities include: client relationship management, proficiency using basic business
software in a Mac environment, business experience, knowledge of the Japanese business
world, solid writing skills and the capacity to meet deadlines gracefully under pressure.
Consultants are responsible for managing their clients' application portfolios and
schedules, helping them to develop realistic career plans, assisting them in developing
outstanding ideas and showing them how to market themselves to a Western academic
environment in the most effective manner.
Can you tell us a bit about compensation for Interface consultants?
For those who qualify for this type of work (i.e., Masters and PhD degree holders),
Interface offers the top pay in the industry as well as an extremely attractive and
comfortable working environment in its new office by the river near Gotanda Station.