Message from the Representative
Aiming to be a cultivator of authentic leaders in East Asia
Aiming to Foster True Leaders to Pull East Asia Forward
Okayama University Campus Asia Program Foundation Leader
Masaru ARAKI was born in 1949 in Aichi, Japan. Ph.D. in Law from Nagoya University. Specializing in Western political history, his main research fields include European mediaeval chronicles and Aristotelian political philosophy. Assistant lecturer at the School of Law, Nagoya University in 1979. In 1980, he took up a position at the Faculty of Law, Okayama University. Appointed assistant professor and later, in 1984, full professor (to March 2015). He has also held the positions of Dean of the Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences as well as Director and Vice President (for social contributions and international exchange) of Okayama University from April 2011 to March 2017.
What Campus Asia aspires to
In 2012, Okayama University’s pilot program for the Campus Asia Project, the “Program for Core Human Resources Development: For the Achievement of Common Good and Re-evaluation of Classical Culture in East Asia” was adopted, this five-year program reaching its conclusion in March 2016. During the five years, the program received a high evaluation for its wide-ranging accomplishments, such as student exchanges involving roughly 560 students, the holding of international symposiums and regional coordination conferences, and the publication of unified textbooks in Japanese, Chinese and Korean. The program was therefore adopted to continue for a further five years.
Okayama University’s Campus Asia Program assists students at Japanese, Chinese and Korean universities in learning about the “common good” in East Asia, and aims to foster human resources who will become the leaders that lead East Asia forward in the future. While studying advanced and specialized knowledge through the curriculum, students share issues that are common to present-day East Asia and aspire to gain the capabilities appropriate for East Asian leaders who possess a deep sense of solidarity for the region.
The second term of this program will build on the achievements of the pilot program, the first term of the program, and aim for even higher accomplishments. To realize this, it is firstly crucial, while engaging in mutual learning of traditional cultures and ethics, to share historical perceptions, and, at the same time, to develop the ability to view the world from each other’s standpoint.
On that basis, it is expected that both teaching staff and students of the Japanese, Chinese and Korean universities will share the common issues of present-day East Asian political economy, science and technology, and medicine. By exploring the objective of East Asian sustainable development in the second term of this program, students will acquire highly specialized capabilities that will lead East Asia forward in the future. To raise these capabilities to an even higher level of perfection it will be imperative to increasingly enliven the exchanges of both teaching staff and students among the three Japanese, Chinese and Korean universities.
In this way, the second term of this program will aim to impart advanced specialist capabilities to students while setting its vision not only on the realization of the “common good” of East Asia from the past to the present, but also into the future.
We fervently hope that many more students will study in international education programs such as this, become true Asiancrats (common intellectual leaders of Asia) who are backed up by deep refinement based on mutual understanding and who aspire to lead East Asia forward in the future.
Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Okayama University
EMMI Yoshito was born in 1959. He specializes in French Renaissance literature, especially la Pléiade. After studying in Université de Reims under an international student scholarship of the French Government, he started his academic career at Okayama University as a senior assistant professor. In 1992, he was engaged in a research project under a young research program of Ministry of Education, Cultural Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Japan, as a member of the middle age language research team of CNRS URFA (Université de Nancy 2). He worked as a professor at Graduate School of Humanities and Social Science, Okayama University and has served as a vice director at the Center for Global Partnerships and Education.
Development of Human Resources with employment advantage
This program supports student exchange and educational cooperation in various fields. The aim is to foster superior human resources who can play an active role beyond the national boundaries, mainly in East Asia. We define such human resources as Asiancrats and aim to develop people who have a global perspective and deep traditional good and are well-versed in local culture. They have the potential to take the lead in community-based health care, technical development, production, sales, business between the three countries and also to demonstrate leadership in tackling various common issues that the East Asia is facing, such as environment, energy and construction of recycling society.
There are three requirements for those who can play their role globally. First of all, language skills. It is well understood among students that English is necessary, at the same time, good commands of regional languages such as Japanese, Chinese and Korean will become essential in the future.
Secondly, capability to understand culture and tradition of foreign countries. We tend to make decisions according to our own standard, however, in consideration of the whole region of East Asia, it is apparently crucial to always consider and respect the way how foreign people think and make decisions. In fact, understanding the cultures and traditions of other countries will enable us to understand each other. In the pilot program, the main theme was “the Common Good”, which was also a keyword of mutual understanding to acknowledge the elements that we have in common.
Thirdly, returning the experiences of studying abroad and the outcomes of leaning back to their own communities and society. The students of CAMPUS Asia can receive governmental supports such as scholarships, and so, they are required to return their experiences to the societies including the home country, the East Asia and the whole Asia.
Students of the CAMPUS Asia program are expected to show leaderships and play an active role with their expertise and skills gained for solving the common challenges our society is facing today. The second phase of Okayama University’s CAMPUS Asia is characterized by its support for developing human capitals demanded by the society, in particular, those who can proactively initiate their capacity development effort with various opportunities including CAMPUS Asia.
Global Partners, Okayama University
Kiichi OYASU was born in 1960. He specializes in Education and Development and Non-formal Education. He worked with various projects to promote Education for All in the Asia and Pacific region at UNESCO Bangkok Office from 1992 to 2008. He then moved to UNESCO Dhaka Office and was in charge of UNESCO’s work in education policies and human resource development. He started working for Okayama University from July 2016 and has assumed a role of Program Manager of the second phase CAMPUS Asia program.
To students who wish to study at Okayama University
Recent years, the number of students who are proficient in foreign languages has been increasing. However, there are not many people who can manage projects by coordinating members with multi-cultural background and take actions in view of happiness of local and also the whole society. I hope that students will enhance their capacities to address the challenges common in East Asia including technical development for tackling issues such as a low birth rate, aging population and environmental protection. Also, they may contribute to developing good social systems including healthcare, energy saving, harmonious coexistence of diverse culture and recycling with the high capability of problem-solving skills in view of happiness and development of the local, national and the whole East Asian region.
Upon the full-scale commencement of the CAMPUS Asia program, Presidents, Vice presidents, professors and relevant staff members will get together in Okayama in February 2017 for Kick-off Meeting. The meeting will be organized to introduce the main contents of the program among the three universities and also outside of this consortium through exchanging views and opinions in order to carry out the program activities smoothly.