Alumni Network News & Topics

Shanghai Nanzankai

On Sunday 7 December, the first meeting of the Shanghai Nanzankai was held. Of the 13 former students in attendance, two had finished a course of study at the CJS, Mr. Robert Roche (CJS 1984) and Ms. Deng Lei (1989). The others at what was an extremely lively gathering, had all graduated from the various faculties of the university. They started up a group known as the “Hashi-no-kai” named because they had each served as “kake-hashi” (link or bridge) between their respective countries and Japan and because “hashi” (chopsticks) are an icon of Asian culture. During their time at Nanzan, some of them had made a profit through stalls they had organized during the University Fair “Seinansai Festival” and others looked forward to setting up their own companies in future. There were also people among the group who had just started new jobs that year, but all were encouraged to hear the words of wisdom from Mr. Robert Roche on his experience starting up companies and that “there are opportunities to be had even though the global economy is in recession.”

  • The participants were as follows:
  • Mr. Sun Tao  (Faculty of Policy Studies 2006)
  • Mr. Zhu Bo  (Faculty of Policy Studies 2005)
  • Mr. Zhu Hai Fei (Faculty of Policy Studies 2006)
  • Mr. Li Bo (Faculty of Policy Studies 2006)
  • Ms. Wang Yin (Faculty of Business Administration 1996)
  • Mr. Dong Hai Yan (Faculty of Business Administration 1996)
  • Mr. Patrick Lim (Faculty of Business Administration 2000)
  • Mr. Shi Hao (Faculty of Economics 1997)
  • Ms. Wang Lei  (Faculty of Business Administration 1995)
  • Ms. Fu Fang  (Faculty of Humanities 1997)
  • Ms. Deng Lei (CJS 1989)
  • Mr. Robert Roche (CJS 1984, Faculty of Law 1986)
  • Mrs. Ritsuko Roche (Faculty of Foreign Studies 1985)

The participants at the gathering were unanimous in their opinion that it was great that they had been able to study at Nanzan University.

A Nanzan University Study Abroad Fair was held in Autumn 2008

On 1 October, 2008, a Study Abroad Fair was held for Nanzan University Japanese students wishing to study overseas.

A total of approximately 70 international students enrolled at the CJS in the Fall Semester from 41 different universities cooperated in introducing aspects of their home towns and universities.

The soft carpet of the room used as a venue served as the ideal location for setting up “booths” for each university. The local Japanese subjects moved around the booths of interest, sitting on the carpet talking freely to the CJS students in English or Japanese, so it was an extremely relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere.

Most of the approximately 80 Japanese students were in their second year, so they are considering studying overseas as exchange students from spring or fall of their third year, but there were also first year students who are thinking about study abroad from now. As well as asking all sorts of questions and gaining information that is not available on the Internet or other such sources they exchanged telephone numbers so they could keep in touch.  The CJS students who helped on the day were all given towels or glasses bearing Nanzan University logos. All were glad to receive such items to commemorate the day.

2008 Center for Japanese Studies Fall Semester Entrance Ceremony

At the Center for Japanese Studies Fall Semester Entrance Ceremony held on 3 September 2008, a total of 135 new students from twenty-one countries and regions were welcomed into the CJS. President of Nanzan University, Michael Calmano,S.V.D., spoke at the ceremony. Here is an extract from the speech given in English:

"The official Japanese title of the "CJS" is 「南山大学外国人留学生別科」- I'm sure that, by May next year, you will have no difficulties understanding and even writing this long word. You might also, by then, wonder why this Center is called a 「別科」, a separate institution for foreign students.

As I see it, both titles, "Center for Japanese Studies" and 「南山大学外国人留学生別科」do not really convey what you are going to experience in the next 9 months. When we say 「外国人」 and 「別科」, we seem to be talking about a special corner for foreigners, a corner where students from abroad can study Japanese and learn about Japanese culture – something Japanese students don't need.

While this isn't completely wrong, it leaves out one important aspect of this Center or 別科: it is not a separate corner, but a very important part of the Nanzan University Campus. It is, in fact, right in the center of Nanzan University, the Pache Square where people meet - people from many different countries and cultures. You are not in a special corner; rather, your presence at Nanzan University will add something very important to Nanzan: a taste of the many different ways people think and live and work on this earth.

I want to go one step further. An "international community" like Nanzan University is not made up from countries or cultures; it consists of people. In this lecture hall, there are people from 21 different countries – more precise: in this lecture hall there are 135 young persons who also belong to 21 different countries. Belonging to a country or culture is important - but it is only one side of the unique human person each of you and me happens to be.

Thus my challenge to you: strive to discover what is common to all of you - and do it by immersing yourself completely in an environment and language that is perhaps, quite different from the environment you have lived in so far. Needless to say, this isn't something that cannot be done just on the Nanzan University campus. Friendship, interaction with your host family, extracurricular activities, all will help to make your studies here at Nanzan more meaningful and more fruitful.

The real value of studying another person's, another country's language is that it will enable us to listen to each other with deeper understanding. I hope you can acquire a genuine and deep respect for the country you have come to for studying and for the many people you will meet here - and I hope that you will find the same respect for you and your country.

Studying a foreign language and culture will become a real and lasting value for you if it leads you to an understanding that reaches across borders of language, culture, and religion. And I hope that, by studying a different, foreign language, you will discover what unites us across all cultural and personal differences and discover the richness of our common humanity. "

Alumni Meeting Held in Taipei for Students from Taiwan

Timed to coincide with the 2008 Study in Japan Fair (Taiwan), a gathering was held on 13 July in Taipei for former Nanzan students. It wasn’t until May that we knew of the opportunity, so some people were surprised to hear that an alumni meeting was to be held, and there were some who had never thought that their connection with Nanzan would be rekindled like this, but I must say that it was quite a struggle to get the addresses of the former students from Taiwan. Somehow we got the word out by sending letters to former students who in the 1980s had progressed from the CJS to studies in the faculties, and in turn, they passed the word on to others, so we got together a list of 15 people who were keen to attend. However, unexpected work commitments or sick children ruled out some people attending, so including the exchange students from Fu Jen University who were working as interpreters at the Study in Japan Fair, the people from Taiwan who participated were:

  • Kou Yu-Hsin (CJS 1979)
  • Kou Pa-Lung, (CJS 1983 and his wife Tomono who graduated from the Department of  British and American Studies)
  • Fuh Pao-Shen, (CJS 1987)
  • Hong Jenwei, (graduated from the Faculty of Business Administration)
  • Lin Chia-Shuen, (graduated from the Faculty of Business Administration)
  • Huang Yu-Hsiu, (CJS 2006)
  • Tseng Ching-Yu, (CJS 2006)
  • Huang Yu-Chis, (CJS 2007)
  • Ho Yuan-Chen, (CJS 2007)

In addition, we met American Luis C. Vargas (CJS 2007) who was in Taipei studying business on an internship, and Eiichi Matsuoka, the director of the Honan Studying Abroad Center. The gathering was held at a restaurant in the Brothers Hotel run by Hong Jenwei’s family.  We owe a debt of gratitude to them not only for the venue, but also for the meal that was kindly provided.

It became clear through the round of self-introductions that there were Japanese nationals among some of the couples, and it was decided that family members will be encouraged to attend subsequent gatherings.

Study in Japan Fair

In 2008, Nanzan University will send staff to attend the following Study in Japan education fairs organized overseas by Japan Students Services Organization (JASSO).

[ Taiwan ] Kaohsiung: Saturday, 12 July, 2008
Taipei: Sunday, 13 July, 2008
[ Republic of Korea ] Busan: Saturday, 6 September, 2008
Seoul: Sunday, 7 September, 2008
[ Thailand ] Chiang Mai: Thursday, 20 November, 2008
Bangkok: Saturday, 22 November, 2008

If you live near to these venues, it would be marvelous if you could drop in to say hello. (Please let us know by e-mail if you think that you can come: cjs-alumni@nanzan-u.ac.jp)


Center for Japanese Studies 2008 Spring Semester Course Completion Ceremony

On Saturday, 17 May 2008, Center for Japanese Studies (CJS) 2007-2008 Course Completion Ceremony was held in which President of Nanzan University, Michael Calmano,S.V.D., presented course completion certificates to 77 people and participation certificates to further 35 people. At the Course Completion Ceremony, after the university president’s speech of congratulations, on behalf of the students Momoko Sato gave a valedictory address in which she expressed her heartfelt thanks to the University.


CJS Festa

The CJS Festa was held in the DB1 classroom on 9 April. The Festa started in 2007 as an opportunity for CJS students to showcase the results of their Japanese study within the University and in addition to introducing the CJS to undergraduate and postgraduate students it was designed to provide a chance for students to interact with each other. This year’s class presentations were as follows:

“Something that I would like to introduce” (IJ300)
“My university” (IJ400)
“Time machine” (IJ500)
“Something my country can boast about” (IJ600)
“What’s happening in the world at the moment?” (IJ700)

On the day, approximately 200 students took part, listening intently to the CJS students’ presentations. After the Festa, CJS students could be seen actively interacting with undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Spring 2008 Nanzan University Overseas-Study Fair

On 9 April, Nanzan University Overseas-Study Fair was held to provide information for undergraduate students considering studying overseas. Approximately 40 of the CJS Spring Semester exchange students, from 26 different universities, helped in providing information about their own universities and hometowns.

Booths for each university were arranged in the special, soft-carpeted classroom so students could go to the booths that interested them and mix with the CJS students, sitting on the floor as they chatted in relaxed fashion in English or Japanese.

Most of the approximately 70 undergraduate students who took part were 3rd year students who will go overseas as exchange students this fall, but some 1st and 2nd year students who are thinking about studying overseas also participated. They all asked many questions, getting all sorts of information not available on the Internet and exchanging telephone numbers so they can stay in touch.

The CJS students who helped out were given Nanzan University T-shirts and cups as a token of the University’s appreciation of their cooperation. All were happy to receive items that will help remind them of their time at Nanzan.

Gathering of former Nanzan students held in Qinghai Province, China

On Sunday, 23 March, a gathering of former Nanzan University students was held in Xining, Qinghai Province. Since the first short-term student from Qinghai Province, Mr. WANG Zuo Quan, came to study at Nanzan in 1984, now every year four students come to study in the Department of Policy Studies. At this latest gathering, students who studied at the CJS and the Department of Policy Studies got together. The end of March was an extremely busy time of year, so the number of people attending was not that high, but as they introduced themselves they all relaxed and happily reminded each other than these sorts of gatherings were only possible because of Nanzan. Before long these former Nanzan students were even singing and dancing and making new connections among themselves.

The following former students attended:

  • Mr. WANG Zuo Quan (CJS 1984), President, Qinghai Nationalities University
  • Mr. QUJIQNG Shang Ma (CJS 1985, 1996), Deputy Director, Ministry of Education, Qinghai Provincial Government
  • Mr. MEI Xue Dai (CJS 1995), Activist for the promotion of Tibetan culture
  • Mr. KONG Xiang Zhi (CJS 1995), Manager, Branch Officer of Qinghai Kojima Culture Development Base
  • Ms. TIAN Yan Ping (CJS 1996), Lecturer, Qinghai Teachers University
  • Mr. GERI Cai Dan (CJS 1999), Officer & Teacher, International Education Center, Qinghai Nationalities University
  • Ms. MA Shu Ting (2000-2003), Japanese teacher, Qinghai Nationalities University
  • Mr. HONG Yan Li (2002-2005), Head of Japan Section, International Tibetan Travel

They would be really happy to hear from any of their old Nanzan classmates.