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Yahui Olenik

Adjunct, World Languages and Cultures

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こんにちは。Hello! This is Yahui Olenik.

I was the first instructor to teach Chinese at Montclair State University, starting in 1986 after my family and I returned from Nanjing, China. I was invited by Dr. Alice Freed, Professor of Linguistics Department to initiate the Japanese Program in 1998. I am still here!

In 2001 I received a grant from the Japan Foundation and did advanced studies in teaching Japanese at the International Japanese Language Institute in Kita Urawa, Japan.

I created The Japanese Language Circle in 2002, and the Japan Club also soon got under way in 2004.

I was honored and pleased to be the first recipient of the Outstanding Service Award
from the Montclair State Adjunct Union AFT Local 6025 in 2012.

But my crowning joy was when the Japanese Minor finally became a reality in Spring of 2018! It was a long time in coming. Thank you to our Japanese students for their passionate support! You keep our Japanese Program strong!

As of 2022, the Department of World Language and Cultures has established a new major in Asian Languages and Cultures with a Concentration in Japanese.

Spring of 2023
This semester, I was teaching Beginning Japanese I, JAPN 101, and an elective, Japanese Conversation and Culture, JAPN 206; both are hybrid courses.

The Japanese Language Circle (J-Circle) started celebrating its 20th anniversary in the Fall of 2022 and continues to this semester with many programs including sampling of Japanese cuisine at the weekly gathering. At the Golden Week Celebration, J-Circle members voted champions for three contests: Kendama, Origami, and Calligraphy with Japanese Proverb in Drawing. One more special event; we had our first Cherry Blossom Viewing “お花見” field trip to the local Branch Brook Park!

Japanese Language Circle -

Japan Club -

For Japanese placement tests or course information, you may contact me:
or Andrew-sensei: Thank you. We look forward to speaking with you.


Prof. Yahui Olenik compiled and completed the Japanese Program website with the assistance of Kelly Mieth, Web and Digital Media Manager, CHSS. June 2023

Following courses were conceived, drafted and submitted to the Curriculum Committee by Prof. Yahui Olenik with the guidance of Dr. Kathleen Loysen.

2020 Fall
JAPN 209 Introduction to Gender & Status in Japanese Language. Title amended: Gender & Status in Japanese Language through Manga and Short Stories.

2018 Spring
JAPN 208 Reading in Japanese

2017 Spring
JAPN 207 Mastering Kanji through Calligraphy. Title amended: Kanji through Reading.

Japanese Minor was approved.
Japanese Minor requirement:

2015 Fall
JAPN206 Japanese Conversation and Culture

2012 Spring
Initiated & Proposed Japanese Minor

2012 Spring
JAPN 151 & 152, Advanced Japanese I & II

Note: These courses are offered one per semester by rotation.