News & Topics

Alumni Network Message from Alumni Association

June 16, 2021

Greetings to all our graduates, and I hope that this message finds you in good health. My name is Robert Kisala, and I am the president of Nanzan University.

I took over as president of the university in April 2020, just as the pandemic was gathering force here in Japan. As a result of the pandemic, most of the international students were sent back to their home countries and classes moved online. Since then more than a year has passed, and the number of international students on campus is still very limited. We are all hopeful that as the vaccinations become more available worldwide travel restrictions will be lifted and we will be able to return to the Nanzan tradition of promoting international exchange among a wide variety of cultures.

I myself am a graduate of the Japanese language program at Nanzan. I entered the Center for Japanese Studies in the summer of 1985, and spent nearly two years on campus, before going to Tokyo for graduate studies. I treasure the time I spent in the program here at Nanzan, and the experience has served me well as I have continued my journey through life.

Considering that the Center for Japanese Studies was founded in 1974, it was still in its infancy when I studied here. Already then, however, a tradition of solid, practical education in Japanese language and culture had been established, and the Center has continued to develop its program in the intervening years.

This coming year there will be two new developments regarding the education of international students at Nanzan. At the Center for Japanese Studies a new program, the Modern Japan Program will be initiated. This will be in addition to the present Intensive Japanese Program, which is aimed at students who want to study Japanese intensively. In contrast, in the Modern Japan Program students will study basic Japanese while at the same time taking high-quality courses in Japanese area studies, conducted in English, together with Japanese students. Through the establishment of this program we aim at promoting educational and cross-cultural exchange between the students of our faculties/ graduate schools and CJS students.

In addition, a new dormitory is being built adjacent to the university, with the opening date set for April 2022. The Nanzan University Janssen International Residence is named after Arnold Janssen, the founder of the Divine Word Missionaries, the Catholic international congregation that founded the Nanzan schools. It will be home to nearly 180 Japanese and international students, and will offer yet another opportunity for intense and broad-ranging intercultural exchanges.

We are excited about these new developments, and draw hope from them that even in the midst of the confusion and pain caused by the present pandemic we are able to find areas to move ahead and further Nanzan’s unique contribution to international education. I pray for the day when all of humanity will be protected from this terrible disease and we will once again be able to move around freely and meet each other directly. In the meantime, let us give thanks for the new opportunities and new skills that we have learned through this experience, and continue to keep in touch and support one another. I hope that sometime you will have the opportunity to return to Nanzan and see for yourself how we continue to develop the international Nanzan tradition, to which you have all made an important contribution.

Dr. Robert Kisala, S.V.D.
Nanzan University





まず、CJSで、Modern Japan Programという新しいプログラムがスタートします。既存のIntensive Japanese Programが、日本語を集中的に学習したい学生を対象としたプログラムであるのに対し、新しいプログラムでは基本的な日本語を学びつつ、英語で提供される質の高い日本事情のコースを日本人学生とともに履修することになります。このプログラムの新設によって、学部・大学院生と別科生の教育的・文化的交流を促進していきたいと考えています。



南山大学 学長

Contacting Alumni Association

Nanzan International Students Alumni Network
Center for International Affairs
Nanzan University
18 Yamazato-cho Showa-ku
Nagoya 466-8673
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Facebook : Nanzan University International Students Alumni Network