This archived article was written by: Shelly Gledhill
The first goal made by CEU’s soccer team was made by forward Kunitoshi Shinozaki, also known around campus as Toshi.
That was the first and only goal made for a while by Shinozaki. Soon after that goal was made, he hurt his knee and was out for a month.
Teammate Patrick Skoltz was quite upset with the news. “Toshi is the best player on the team,” he says.
Shinozaki has been playing soccer 15 years, since he was four years old.
He is the oldest son of Yumy Shinozaki and has one younger brother, Kuniyasu, who has been playing soccer as long as him. Shinozaki says that his brother is better than he is, if that is possible. He even travels to other countries to play the game.
Shinozaki came to Price from Chiba, Japan. It was sort of an accident how he found CEU. He opened a book one day and saw The College of Eastern Utah. He thought, “This school is pretty cheap, and it sounds like it wouldn’t be really crowded. I think that this college must be a good one because it is smaller and in the countryside.”
He wanted to study away from his family to become more independent. Price, Utah is indeed far away from his family.
When he first came here, he wanted to go to a bigger university with more people, although he does admit that he is getting used to Price. “This school is kind of small and everyone is from Utah. I like the people, but not so much the location.”
He has found that by coming to America, things are quite different from what he is used to in Japan. “Americans like to hang out and talk a lot, it’s so cool.” It took some time to get used to this however, because he is used to staying at home and studying.
He says that when he was back in Japan, he was not really outgoing. He would go to school and then stay at home and do his homework and then watch TV. Here, he felt more uncomfortable because of the way everyone likes to talk, and he didn’t feel comfortable speaking English all of the time. Now however, he is used to it and enjoys it.
Shinozaki has been at CEU for a year and a half and will be leaving after this semester to attend University of Nevada Las Vegas. He has two more years of school and when he finishes, he wants to do hospitality work.
He looks forward to going to a big city and having new and different experiences. He knows that with the city comes more distractions, but he says that he is ready and excited.
Shinozaki was raised only by his mother. He says, “I respect my mom. When I was small, she had to do everything by herself. I think she did well raising us. She is athletic and would play ball with us all of the time. She’s really awesome and has influenced me a lot.”
When Shinozaki first came to Utah, he enjoyed listening to Japanese pop. Throughout the time he has been here, he has taken a liking to American punk and rock.
He states that his friends back in Japan think he’s weird. He says that his way of thinking is different from others there. His friends gave him a nickname, Ossan, which translates into English as uncle or old man. This may be because he is not a huge partier, and when he does, he gets out of control. He says he goes nuts and can’t handle himself and gets very emotional.
Before he leaves CEU, he wants to thank everyone for being nice to him since he has been here. “Their personalities makes me realize that I have to develop more personality, to socialize and be more kind and empathize with others more.”
He says, “The people I’ve met here have the best personality I’ve ever met.”