We thank everyone for being a part of the event and turning it into a great success (despite the heavy rain). We have had an amazing turn out of MEXT scholars and alumni.
A quick snap of the event:
Alba told her amazing story of how she moved from biotechnology to entrepreneurship and what she learnt from the journey. Later, Saito san involved the participants in his talk by having them plot out their life as a graph and built meaningful discussions around the plots.
A little more on Deloitte Tohmatsu Venture Support:
Groundbreaking ideas too often do not reach the market because of a lack of customers or a mismatch with market needs. DTVS nurtures startups according to their needs and at all stages of development, by leveraging the extensive Deloitte network and our in-house expertise in venture affairs. With a firm belief that startups are the lifeblood of an ecosystem, DTVS offers a broad range of expert services free of charge to startups.
Our role is to act as a catalyst, to accelerate the rate of innovation. We believe this is of paramount importance for brilliant and disruptive ideas to take form and to be implemented as solutions that benefit both the economy and the society. At TVS, we support, connect and cooperate with startups and corporations in order to transform bold ideas into tangible, innovative solutions. So far, we have supported over 3000 promising startups as well as assisted hundreds of our clients to implement open innovation programs.
We sincerely thank Deloitte Tohmatsu Venture Support for providing us with the venue and the financial support. We also thank all the DTVS staff members, especially the speakers, Alba and Saito san, for all the time and energy that they have dedicated to this event. We love all the attendees for participating in our event.
Please follow, like and sign up with MEXT Scholars’ Association in order to receive the information at the earliest. This information was first sent out in our mailing list. Do sign up with the mailing list in order to receive the event information.
MSA co-hosted TOKYO KAIGI Conference 2017 on the 30th of September, in coordination with partner organization ZESDA. First, panel discussion was held among notable speakers (see below) on the theme “the Future of Cities”, focusing on Tokyo’s urban development after the 2020 Olympics. Next, participants took part in group discussions about such urban issues as social isolation, discrimination in the rental housing market, and outdated hiring practices of local companies. The event was attended by over 120 participants from over 30 countries, and was well-received by both participants and speakers.
Mr. Tsunehiro Uno, a journalist and commentator
Mr. Ryosuke Toura, executive of Tokyu Corporation
Mr. Dennis Chia, founder of Sosei Partners
Ms. Nhu Quynh Tran, ex-chief officer of the ASEAN Youth Network in Japan
Mr. Cory Baird, co-founder of Tokyo Interlopers
In the next few months, the organizing committee will be compiling a white paper based on the ideas shared at the event. We hope for your continued support!
On Saturday, 5th August the Kansai Team of MSA organized an evening hang-out to enjoy the brilliant display of fireworks in Kobe Port area. Every year on the first Saturday of August around 10,000 fireworks are blasted into the sky and they flower into a dazzling spectacle of colors. This year was special, as it is the 150th anniversary of the Port of Kobe and the quantity of fireworks had been increased, making it the biggest fireworks display in Kansai area.
The planning and preparations started weeks before the event day. On Saturday, the MSA volunteers reached the venue quite early to make arrangements for everyone’s accommodation and reserve a good viewing spot till the evening. The MSA, especially, appreciates their Japanese friends who came out to help out with the preparation. Slowly, people started to gather and the seemingly empty space was filled with chattering and excitement. By 5:30 pm, most of members had arrived and the wait for the fireworks continued. At that time, 23 people from all over Kansai area joined the event and MSA was very happy to see many known faces from the last event in Kyoto.
The Kobe Port area view is amazingly beautiful even without any fireworks. As wait continued, the group witnessed a beautiful sunset-show with the Port Tower area in the background. Then they were greeted by an amazing transition of the Kobe City-scape into a brilliantly lit nightscape. The view is considered one of the best in Japan.
At 7:30 pm, it was finally the time for the fireworks to start and the next one hour was dominated by the thundering display of colorful lights in the sky. It was simply awe-inspiring. The fireworks finished at 8:30 pm but as crowded as it was expected to be most of them made it to the station just in time to catch the last train back to home. It was a beautiful evening and the enthusiasm of the participants made worth all the effort that was put in. The MSA also wants to thank our friends from other scholarship organizations who decided to join us and make the time spent more beautiful.
On Sunday, 16th July, 2017 the Kansai division of MSA organized an evening walk to the Gion-festival in Kyoto. Despite the bad-weather with occasional heavy downpour, 33 people joined the event. It is important to note that this was one of the first MSA events in Kansai and so, the support shown by the fellow MEXT scholars was a great source of motivation for the organizers. People came not only from all parts of Kansai (Kyoto, Osaka and Kobe) but also, there were 2 participants from Okayama and Kagoshima.
The evening started with a visit to the Yasaka Shrine, which is the shrine for the Gion-festival. As it was the day of Yoi-Yama, the day before the procession of floats, there were many special events in and around Yasaka Shrine. One of those was the performance of Iwami-Kagura, an ancient Japanese dance form usually performed in shrines to please the deities. Iwami-Kagura is from the Western part of Shimane-Prefecture and depicts a fight-scene of Susanoo, the Kami of Storm with an eight-headed serpentine monster. The participants tried to blend-in with the crowd despite the hot-weather and became a part of the festive-mood.
After the performance, the group walked towards the Shijo-Karasuma area. The next stop was the floats (or the Yama-bokos) which are the prime symbols of Gion-Matsuri. The crowded street was filled with people in yukatas and it was a beautiful sight. The Yama-bokos were all beautifully decorated and stationed elegantly as if all of them were looking forward to the procession on the next day. The evening ended with the enjoyment of the local street-foods which were in plenty and also another attraction of the festival.
In a short span of a few hours, many of the participants became friends with each-other. Most of the participants were happy as this was their first official outing with other MEXT scholars. The breaking of ice was the primary objective of organizing this event. The plan is to work towards building a very strong family of MEXT scholars in Kansai area and beyond. The wheel has been set into motion and the Kansai team is now already discussing about their next event.
On the 24th of June, MEXT and JASSO co-organized a reception for MEXT scholars in Kobe filled with speeches by MSA and MEXT representatives, cultural programs and opportunities for networking for MEXT scholars in the Kansai area. Of course, MSA was also present with its very own booth; answering questions, spreading the word and encouraging new scholars to sign up on the spot and become a member of MSA! Furthermore, MSA also arranged a number of seminars to help new scholars getting started in Japan. Two of the committee members even traveled all the way from Tokyo to guide new scholars through the event in English as well as Japanese and to personally invite them to join the growing community!
The regional head for the Kansai region and graduate student at Kyoto University gave a warm welcome speech to all new scholars at the event.
We would like to thank Mr. Hiroki Matsuo, Deputy Director-General of the Higher Education Bureau, MEXT, and Mr. Hideki Yonekawa, Vice President of JASSO for their words of support and for giving us the opportunity to connect with you through events like the reception for MEXT scholars in Kobe. We also greatly appreciate everyone who visited our booth and took part in our seminars and were simply overwhelmed by the great number of students taking interest in MSA. Thanks to every single one of you, our community is growing bigger and our bonds are getting stronger every day! With a bigger and stronger community, we can have a greater impact and it will be easier to give back to Japanese society!
MEXT Scholars’ Association turned 1 on the 17th of June and what better way to celebrate than with a big cake surrounded by old and new friends! MSA organized a birthday event at the Omotesando Oval Building in Shibuya filled with both opportunities for experience exchange and for networking with fellow scholars as well as alumni.
At this event, the participants had the honor to listen to how the following three alumni speakers succeeded and how they give back to the Japanese society:
1. Ashraf Omer from Sudan, a Deputy Manager at Sumitomo Chemical.
2. Benson Liu, an Australian Transfer Pricing Associate at Grant Thornton.
3. Arianne Dumayas, an Assistant Professor at Chuo University from the Philippines.
The guest speakers started off with sharing the experiences they made studying and working in Japan. Since one of the themes is “to give back to the Japanese society”, the guest speakers were asked for their opinions and experiences regarding this matter. They seemed to be doing their best to “give back”, be it giving back to students through their job in terms of education or giving back to those in need, of which there are plenty in Japan, even though it is such a highly developed country. The session then proceeded to a panel discussion, which is part of the MSA’s “From Scholars to Scholars” series, which features alumni with professional experiences. The floor was open to the audience to ask each of the speakers personal questions regarding their experiences in each of the fields that they are involved in.
The discussion was followed by an annual report from MSA’s side, where the achievements throughout this first year were presented, followed by the introduction of plans for the future and then a warm greeting from Izumi-san, a MEXT representative. A networking session over finger food, drinks, snacks and delicious birthday cake concluded MSA’s birthday party. MSA’s Birthday Bash was attended by nearly 50 alumni and current undergraduate as well as graduate students, with academic fields of expertise ranging from linguistics to mathematics and international relations.
We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks especially to ZESDA for opening this space for us to hold this unique event to celebrate our birthday and strengthen our community of MEXT scholars together. Last but not least, a big thank you to our guest speakers and every single MEXT scholar or alumni, who joined us for our birthday party and made this event special! We look forward to seeing you at our next event!
Those who have been in Japan for a while – all remember how they landed in Japan from a plane starry-eyed dreaming about what awaited them…
And also the overwhelming and lost feelings
If only they had had prior connections with their senpais, settling in would have been much easier! How to handle the first few months in Japan, how to approach studying in Japan, how to save money …
This is why the MSA visited TUFS, to hang out with the new MEXT scholars there on the 23rd of April. The areas of discussion included where to shop, how to approach university applications and other such queries.It was followed with a lovely dinner over sankichi bento.
We hope to continue these kinds of events to create links between previous and current or even graduated scholars! Thanks to all of you who came to participate and we hope to see you at our next event!
On the 19th of November, both MEXT Scholars Exchange Platform (MSEP) and MEXT Scholars’ Network (MSN) participated in the MEXT Scholars Welcome Party held at JASSO’s Odaiba dormitory.
The event was organized by MEXT and more than 300 participants from universities from all over Japan gathered.
We thank all the scholars for participating in the event and hope that the event gave everyone a chance to get to know fellow scholars, as well as MEXT scholar groups such as MSN and MSEP which aim to further and deepen the community between scholars.
The next party will be held probably in the middle of 2017 in Kansai so we hope to see you there!
#2: The Pathways of Engineering – Telecommunications, Civil, and Management.
“From Scholars to Scholars” is a series of panel discussions that feature alumni with outstanding professional experiences. Hoping that attending these sessions and interacting with other participants, both students and alumni alike will bring the inspiration to contribute back to society in a larger capacity.
The 2nd iteration of the MEXT Scholars’ Network’s “From Scholars to Scholars” Speakers Series was held at the ASEAN-Japan Centre in Shinbashi on the 1 Oct 2016.
Our second panel discussion features the following three alumni speakers:
1. Sourabh Maiti, an Indian research engineer at Softbank.
2. Duangkamol Kamolyabutra, a Thai senior engineer at TÜV SÜD Japan, a German railway company.
3. Khoo Kai Siang, a Malaysian corporate strategy manager at Toyo Engineering Corporation.
The event started off with the presentations by each speaker, sharing their educational experiences while studying in Japan, as well as their career journeys ever since graduation. The session then proceeded on to the panel discussion section, where the floor was opened to the audience to ask each of the speakers, personal questions regarding their experiences in each of the fields that they are involved in. Of note was especially how engineering as an education degree actually leads into very different and exciting pathways, as well as opening many doors, when it comes to career choices.
The discussion was concluded with a networking social session over pizza, drinks and other refreshments. The event was attended by over 30 alumni and current scholars alike, with academic field of expertise ranging from engineering to economics and international relations.
We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks especially to ASEAN-Japan Centre for once again opening this space for us to hold this unique event to build our community of MEXT scholars together. Last but not least, thanks to all of you who made it down to join us! See you at our next event!
The MEXT Scholars’ Network held the inaugural alumni networking event on the 27th of August, 2016 at a cozy event space in Meguro. It was a rare opportunity for scholarship alumni from different professional backgrounds to reconnect with an internationally diverse community.
Though it was a rainy summer evening, there was a sizable turnout of 26 people from all around the Kanto region. A grand buffet was presented by a chef specializing in Italian cuisine. There was also a free flow of drinks. The event was also attended by a few members of ZESDA (Zipang Economic System Design Association), a Japanese NPO that promotes social innovation through business, as well as JAPI (Japan Association for Promoting Internationalization). From diversity often comes new ideas and inspiration, and many of the participants took the opportunity to share their thoughts on cross-border innovations.
We would like to thank everyone for making this alumni party a success! We look forward to your continued support for future events at which alumni members may build their professional network.