About Tokyo Tech

History

Early years (1881-1929)

Tokyo Tech's history spans more than 130 years. Tokyo Tech originated as the Tokyo Vocational School in 1881, survived the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 and the ensuing campus move from Kuramae to Ookayama in 1924, saw the change of status to a degree conferring university in 1929, and continues from the present day into the future.

Tokyo Vocational School

In the early Meiji period, soon after the opening of the country, it became imperative that Japan cultivate human resources to develop modern industrial technology. The government was actively promoting the technical education of its citizens at this time in order to develop the advanced science and technology that was already common in Europe and the United States. Against this background, Japan's first national technical school, the Kogakuryo Technical School, was founded by the Ministry of Engineering in 1873.

Around the same time, the Ministry of Education founded the Seisakugaku Kyojo in 1874 at the suggestion of Gottfried Wagener, a German-born scientist. Wagener had been vocal about the necessity of practical technical education in Japan in order to cultivate senior engineers and engineers. Although the Seisakugaku Kyojo closed three years later, it was a revolutionary school in that students were taught practical skills along with scientific theories to produce engineers necessary for modernizing Japanese industry.

Seiichi Tejima, who was then assistant director general of the Museum of Education, together with Wagener pushed for modern technical and industrial education with emphasis on practical applications. With the support of Ryuichi Kuki and Arata Hamao of the Ministry of Education, they succeeded in persuading the Ministry to establish the Tokyo Vocational School in May 1881.

  • Gottfried Wagener

    Gottfried Wagener

  • Tokyo Vocational School

    Tokyo Vocational School

Wherever there's a chimney, there you will find someone from Kuramae

Preparations for opening the school began. A curriculum was established in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of the Tokyo Vocational School enacted in 1881. These rules stated that the school should provide the necessary technical and industrial science education to become a vocational school teacher or senior engineer. Kuramae in Taito City near the Sumida River was chosen as the site for the campus. Kuramae means the storehouse front and the name comes from the rice storehouses of the Tokugawa Shogunate located there.

Taizo Masaki was the first principal of the school and the first classes were held in 1882 in two departments: the Department of Machinery and the Department of Applied Chemistry. The Tokyo Vocational School graduated its first class in July 1887. Initially the school had a hard time recruiting students, because technical skills were traditionally handed down in Japan in an apprenticeship system. The shift from apprenticeship to modern technical education had only just begun. In 1884, Wagener started to teach at the school in accordance with the principles and methods of the former Seisakugaku Kyojo. He developed modern technology for large-scale production in manufacturing industries such as ceramics, glass, and lacquerware. Wagener provided the foundation for Tokyo Tech's later advancements as industrial manufacturing took root in Japan.

In 1890, Seiichi Tejima took over Masaki's job and became principal of the school. Tejima had gone to the United States to study when he was 21 years old and was the interpreter of the Iwakura Mission, a Japanese diplomatic mission that traveled around the world. He later assumed the role of assistant director general of the Museum of Education and went to the Paris and Philadelphia World Expositions. From these experiences Tejima became a pioneer advocate of technical education in Japan. The Tokyo Vocational School was renamed Tokyo Technical School in 1890 and then Tokyo Higher Technical School in 1901. Numerous leaders in academia and industry passed through the doors during the 25-year period in which Tejima led the school.

An adage arose during the years of the Tokyo Technical School. "Wherever there's a chimney, there you will find someone from Kuramae," meaning that wherever there was a large-scale industrial complex, a graduate of the school had been involved in its establishment. Kuramae remained the center of technical education until the school was burned to the ground on September 1, 1923 when the Great Kanto Earthquake struck.

  • Seiichi Tejima

    Seiichi Tejima

  • Main Building of Tokyo Higher Technical School

    Main Building of Tokyo Higher Technical School

Tokyo Higher Technical School moved to Ookayama in 1924. The school became a degree-conferring university in 1929. It was initially called Tokyo University of Engineering, and later renamed Tokyo Institute of Technology around 1946.

  • 1946 correspondence of the Ministry of Education

    1946 correspondence of the Ministry
    of Education

  • Japanese manuscript with the university's English name edited

    Japanese manuscript with the university's English name edited

English replies to the questionnaire on students' welfare

English replies to the questionnaire on students' welfare

For details visit Tokyo Institute of Technology 130th Anniversary in 2011 (Japanese)outer

Timeline of Tokyo Tech milestones in history

2015-2010

2015

April
  • Conclusion of operations at Center for Research and Development of Educational Technology. Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning established. Compliance Office reorganized into Office for the Appropriate Management of Education and Research Funds.
  • Collaborative Research Center for Happiness Co-Creation Society through Intelligent Communications established.
  • Office of Institutional Research and Decision Support established.
July
  • Crisis Management Office reorganized into Compliance and Crisis Management Office.
December
  • Tokyo Tech Advisory Board established.

2014

April
  • Conclusion of operations at the Research Center for the Science of Institutional Management of Technology, the Osmotic Power Research Center and the Global Edge Institute.
July
  • The Headquarters for the Promotion of Education Reform renamed the University Reform Headquarters.
December
  • The Collaborative Organization for International Education and Research established.

2013

April
  • The Center for University Communications and Coordination and the Office for the 130th Anniversary Project reorganized into the Public Outreach Office.
  • The Department of Communications and Integrated Systems renamed the Department of Communications and Computer Engineering.
  • The Research Center for Educational Facilities reorganized.
  • Conclusion of operations at the Research Center for the Evolving Earth and Planets.
  • Conclusion of operations at the Center for CompView Research and Education.
  • The Research Center for Nanometer-Scale Quantum Physics reorganized into the International Research Center for Nanoscience and Quantum Physics.
  • Innovator and Inventor Development Platform established.
  • Conclusion of operations at the Productive Leader Incubation Platform.
August
  • Conclusion of operations at the International Research Center of Macromolecular Science.
October
  • The Research Project Support Center was reorganized into the Research Administration Center.

2012

April
  • Conclusion of operations at the Emerging Nanomaterial Research Center.
  • Conclusion of operations at the Center for Photonic Nano-Device Integrated Engineering.
  • Conclusion of operations at the Tokyo Tech Archive Initiative.

2011

January
  • The Center for Liberal Arts was established.

2010

November
  • The Research Center for Low Temperature Physics (Research and Service Centers) was reorganized into the Research Center for Low Temperature Physics (Common Facilities).
    The Organization for Life Design and Engineering was established.Conclusion of operations at the Strategic Management Office
October
  • The Energy Conservation Promotion Office was established.
April
  • The Microsystem Research Center was reorganized into the Photonics Integration System Research Center affiliated to the Precision and Intelligence Laboratory.
    The International Nuclear Research Cooperation Center affiliated to the Research Laboratory for Nuclear Reactors was established.
    The Imaging Science and Engineering Laboratory affiliated to the Graduate School of Science and Engineering was reorganized into the Imaging Science and Engineering Laboratory.
    The Frontier Research Center was reorganized.
    The Solutions Research Laboratory was established.
    The Research Center for Carbon Recycling and Energy (Research and Service Centers) was reorganized into the Research Center for Carbon Recycling and Energy (Common Facilities).
    The Advanced Education Research Center was established.
    The Osmotic Power Research Center was established. Conclusion of operations at the Large-scale Knowledge Resources Center.
    The Integrated Research Institute was reorganized.

2009-2000

2009

November
  • The Multidisciplinary Research Center for Energy Science was reorganized into the Inter-departmental Organization for Environment and Energy.
August
  • The Research Project Support Center was established.
May
  • The University Management Center was established.
April
  • The Multidisciplinary Research Center for Energy Science was established. The Career Advancement Professional School was established. The Tokyo Tech Archive Initiative was established.
March
  • The Tokyo Tech Front was established.

2008

July
  • The Gender Equality Center was established. The Productive Leader Incubation Platform was established.
May
  • The Asia-Africa Biology Research Center was established.
April
  • The Secure Device Research Center affiliated to the Precision and Intelligence Laboratory was established. The Photovoltaics Research Center was established. The Inter-departmental Organization for Informatics was established.

2007

November
  • The Frontier Collaborative Research Center, the 80th Anniversary Center for Research Admission Office, the Venture Business Laboratory and the Incubation Center were merged into the new Frontier Research Center.
October
  • The Information Infrastructure Management Office was established. The Center for Public Relations and Coordination was reorganized into the Center for Public Affairs and Communications and the Center for University Communications and Coordination.
April
  • The new Admission Office was established. The Technical Department was established.

2006

December
  • The Center for Photonic Nano-Device Integrated Engineering was established.
July
  • The Global Edge Institute was established.
April
  • The Center for Materials Design affiliated to the Materials and Structures Laboratory was reorganized into the Secure Materials Center affiliated to the Materials and Structures Laboratory. The Super-Mechano Systems R&D Center, the Student Services Center, and the Center for the Study of World Civilizations were established.
January
  • The Center for Research into Innovative Nuclear Energy Systems was established.

2005

October
  • The Integrated Research Institute was established.
September
  • The Emerging Nanomaterial Research Center was established.
April
  • The Graduate School of Innovation Management was established. The Technical High School attached to the School of Engineering was reorganized into the Tokyo Tech High School of Science and Technology. The Center for Research in Advanced Financial Technology was reorganized. The large-scale Knowledge Resource Center, the Research Center for Nanometer-Scale Quantum Physics, the Bio-Frontier Research Center, the Center on Agent Based Social Systems Sciences, the Center for Molecular Science and Technology, the Research Center for the Evolving Earth and Planets, the Research Center for the Science of Institutional Management of Technology were established. Also established was the Collaboration Center for Design and Manufacturing(CODAMA).
  • Department of Information Processing and Department of Advanced Applied Electronics, both in the Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Science and Engineering, were integrated and reorganized into the Department of Electronics and Applied Physics and the new Department of Information Processing.

2004

April
  • Tokyo Institute of Technology was reestablished as an independent administrative institution with the name "National University Corporation Tokyo Institute of Technology."
  • The Research Center for Quantum Effect Electronics was reorganized into the Quantum Nanoelectronics Research Center. The Planning Office and the Financial Management Office were established.

2003

September
  • The Center for Urban Earthquake Engineering was established. The Office of Industry Liaison was established.
May
  • The Research and Development Center for Educational Facilities was reorganized into the Research Center for Educational Facilities. The Gene Research Center, the Research Center for Experimental Biology, and the Radioisotope Research Center were integrated into the Center for Biological Resources and Informatics.
    The Department of Precision Machinery Systems was renamed the Department of Mechano-Micro Engineering.

2002

October
  • The General Safety Management Center and the Center for Public Relations and Coordination were established.
April
  • The Research Center for Carbon Recycling and Utilization was reorganized into the Research Center for Carbon Recycling and Energy.
    The Evaluation Office and the International Planning Office were established.

2001

May
  • The Nagatsuta Campus was renamed the Suzukakedai Campus.
April
  • The Computer Center and the International Cooperation Center for Science and Technology were reorganized into the Global Scientific Information and Computing Center. The Research Center for Very Low Temperature System was reorganized into the Research Center for Low Temperature Physics.

2000

April
  • The Kusatu-Shirane Volcano Observatory was reorganized into the Volcanic Fluid Research Center.

1999-1980

1999

April
  • The Center for Research in Advanced Financial Technology was established.

1998

April
  • The Center for Research Cooperation and Information Exchange was reorganized into the Frontier Collaborative Research Center.

1997

April
  • The Radioisotope Research Center was established.

1996

May
  • The Foreign Language Research and Teaching Center was established. The Research Laboratory of Engineering Materials was reorganized to the Materials and Structures Laboratory.
April
  • The Graduate School of Decision Science and Technology was established.

1994

June
  • The Education Center for Foreign Students was reorganized into the International Student Center. The Research Center for Quantum Effect Electronics was established. The Research Center for Experimental Biology was established.
April
  • The Graduate School of Information Science and Engineering was established.

1993

April
  • The Research Center for Educational Facilities was reorganized into the Research and Development Center for Educational Facilities.

1992

April
  • The Graduate School of Bioscience and Biotechnology was established on the Nagatsuta Campus (now called the Suzukakedai Campus). The Research Center for Carbon Recycling and Utilization was established.

1991

April
  • The Experimental Center for Very Low Temperature and Energy Techniques established in 1981 was reorganized into the Research Center for Very Low Temperature Systems.

1990

June
  • The School of Bioscience and Biotechnology was established on the Nagatsuta Campus (now called the Suzukakedai Campus).

1989

May
  • The Gene Research Center was established in Ookayama (moving later to the Suzukakedai Campus).

1988

April
  • The Education Center for Foreign Students was established. Also the Kusatsu-Shirane Volcano Observatory was established.

1983

April
  • The Research Center for Educational Facilities was established.

1982

April
  • The Center for Research Cooperation and Information Exchange was established.

1979-1881

1979

April
  • The International Cooperation Center for Science and Technology was established.

1976

May
  • The Computer Center was established.

1975

April
  • The Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Science and Engineering was established at Nagatsuta Campus (now called the Suzukakedai Campus).

1971

April
  • The Health Service Center was established.

1967

June
  • The School of Science and Engineering was divided into the School of Science and the School of Engineering. Tokyo Tech's Affiliated Technical High School became attached to the School of Engineering.

1964

April
  • The Research Laboratory for Nuclear Reactors was established.

1958

March
  • The Research Laboratory of Building Materials and Research Laboratory of Ceramic Industry were integrated and reorganized into the Research Laboratory of Engineering Materials.

1956

April
  • The Graduate School of Engineering was renamed the Graduate School of Science and Engineering.

1955

July
  • The School of Engineering was renamed the School of Science and Engineering.

1954

April
  • Tokyo Tech's six Research Laboratories: the Research Laboratory of Building Materials, the Research Laboratory of Resources Utilization, the Research Laboratory of Precision Machinery, the Research Laboratory of Ceramic Industry, the Research Laboratory of Electronics, and the Research Laboratory of Fuel Science, which were established in 1934, 1939, 1939, 1943, 1944, and 1944, respectively, were integrated and reorganized into four research laboratories: the Research Laboratory of Building Materials, the Research Laboratory of Resources Utilization, the Precision and Intelligence Laboratory and the Research Laboratory of Ceramic Industry.

1953

April
  • The Graduate School of Engineering was established.

1951

April
  • The Affiliated High School of Telecommunications (Denpa Kogei High School) and the Affiliated High School of Mechanics & Industrial Design (Kogei High School) of Tokyo Engineering College affiliated to Chiba University were integrated into the Affiliated Technical High School of the Institute.

1949

May
  • The enactment of the National School Establishment Law promoted the reorganization of Tokyo Institute of Technology so as to comply with the nation's education system reform, extending its three-year course into four years and establishing the School of Engineering within the university.

1929

April
  • The status of Tokyo Higher Technical School was elevated to a degree-conferring university, and later renamed Tokyo Institute of Technology.

1924

April
  • Tokyo Higher Technical School was moved from Kuramae to the present site at Ookayama.

1901

May
  • Tokyo Technical School was renamed Tokyo Higher Technical School.

1890

March
  • Tokyo Vocational School was renamed Tokyo Technical School.

1881

May
  • Tokyo Institute of Technology was founded by the Japanese government as Tokyo Vocational School.