Japan is known as a country where 証明書 “diplomas” are particularly important. I won’t say that a freshly graduated student of a famous university will systematically get the job over someone with a rich experience but the chances are probably likewise. Anyway, you only have to go to a book store to verify that 資格 “certification” is big in Japan. There is a whole dedicated corner for certifications in every book store I know. This and the very broad range of specialized magazines makes Japan a great place for those who love self-learning.
There are 293 国家資格 “national qualifications” officially backed up by 文部科学省 “the minister of education”. From the universal TOEIC to a technician in boilers, there surely is a qualification made for you. I can’t resist to list up the most surprising qualifications I have seen.
- ボイラー技士 “boiler engineer”
- クレーン運転技能 “Crane operation skills”
- 放射線取扱主任者 “Person in charge of handling radioactives sources”
- クリーニング師 “Laundry master”
- カラー・コーディネーター “Color coordinator”
- 家電製品アドバイザー “Expert in house appliances”
- ビジネス実務マナー “Practice of professional manners”
- マンション管理者 “condominium caretaker”
- スカイフロントコーディネーター（屋上緑化） “Roof coordinator (green roofs)”
- コーヒー・コーディネーター “Coffee coordinator”
- 電卓技能試験 “calculator skill master”
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