The Asian Studies Program celebrated its new academic year 2016

Sep 07, 2016 (Wed.)

The Opening Ceremony of the Asian Studies Program was held on Wednesday, August 31. The Program - welcomed 353 international students representing 35 countries and regions, most of whom are here through Kansai Gaidai’s international affiliation arrangements. Attendees included two distinguished guests, Ms. Catherine Taylor, Consul General, Australian Consulate General, Osaka and Mr. Robert Noddin, President and CEO of AIG Japan Holdings.

In his welcoming remarks, President Yoshitaka Tanimoto stated that throughout its 70-year history, Kansai Gaidai has been striving to promote international understanding and cooperation. “Cross-cultural understanding is desperately needed in today’s world and only human beings can bridge the divide between peoples,” he said.

Ms. Katherine Taylor from the Australian Consulate emphasized the importance of deeper understanding about Japan and the greater Asian region, and advised students to take advantage of the program’s multi-layered opportunities to “learn about Japanese language and culture and integrate into the local community and build a lifelong interest and friendships.”

Mr. Robert Noddin, a former Asian Studies Program participant himself, reflected on his path and career and gave valuable advice from his own experience by saying “Take advantage of every single opportunity to get out and get involved, and make most of it while you are here. Do not be afraid of making mistakes because you can learn from failure. For some of you, that will lead to a career in this part of the world as I have been able to do myself.”

The ceremony concluded with a Koto (Japanese Zither) performance by Kansai Gaidai’s local students, to demonstrate Japanese hospitality through traditional music.

The happy faces of the international students are evidence of their enthusiasm and excitement. We wish them congratulations and welcome to the fascinating experience at Kansai Gaidai.