Essay: 長期的なビジョン a long-term vision


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An article prepared for a book of the 75th Anniversary, The Society of Chemical Engineers Japan (2012)




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I came to Japan as a government-sponsored scholarship student without knowing the appeal of Japan, and after studying at a Japanese language school, undergraduate course, and graduate school, I became an academic staff. When I was an undergraduate, I had a hard time because I couldn’t get used to Japanese ‘style’. Now that we have accepted foreign/international students and researchers from various countries, I have come to have a question about the current situation in which the number of international students is increasing under the initiative of policy without thinking about the purpose of many institutions such as universities to accept foreign students and the purpose of international students choosing Japan to study abroad.

I am afraid that without a long-term vision, there will be a stronger short-term view of acquiring international students as “useful” people for projects and university benefits.

There is a view that international students are human resources who stay in Japan temporarily, but it is best to be able to continue the relationship even after leaving Japan as an understanding person. Unfortunately, as far as I can see, there are quite a few cases of (former) international students returning home with misunderstandings because they could not adapt to the structure and customs of Japanese society.

For Japan, which is dependent on overseas resources and energy, international student education is an “Investment” in the future, and promotes high-quality “International human resource development” in educational setting. I hope that the common point of having received a Japanese-style education after studying abroad will serve as an effective medium for the continuation of the relationship between Japan and them, and that exchanges and partnerships across fields and countries will be formed.