About Tokyo Tech

2016 Spring Entrance Ceremony for master's and doctoral program students

2016 Spring Entrance Ceremony for master's and doctoral program students

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the 2016 Spring Entrance Ceremony for master's and doctoral degree students. We are honored to have with us members of the Board of Directors, deans, directors, and special guests to celebrate the entrance of 1,799 students into Tokyo Tech's master's, professional degree, and doctoral programs. You have worked hard to be here today, and have every reason to be proud. Let us also congratulate your parents and express our deep gratitude for the time, effort, and resources they have dedicated to supporting you through your childhood and college life.

All of you now stand on the threshold of the next stage of your life, the threshold of realizing your vision of working in science and technology. As a person who also studied at this Institute, I welcome you to this wondrous world and assure you that you will encounter the unknown through your studies and research. To get the most out of your Tokyo Tech experience, I recommend two things to all of you. First, be proactive, and put your heart into everything you do during your time with us. Explore new fields and activities with enthusiasm and a hunger to improve yourself. And second, while acquiring the knowledge and skills that will allow you to realize your goals and dreams, keep asking yourself what you can do for the benefit of society with the degree you will earn at the end of your studies.

When I assumed the office of President in fall 2012, I set the goal of making Tokyo Tech one of the top ten research universities in the world by 2030, a year shy of the Institute's 150th anniversary. A key component in achieving this goal is the new education system and research structure implemented this month to provide all of you with more opportunities to achieve excellence. In addition to developing advanced abilities in your chosen specializations, you will also receive a comprehensive liberal arts education. You will have the opportunity to greatly improve your communication skills, enabling you to better understand and work with individuals in different cultures and fields, and to tackle global issues. You will be equipped with the tools to actively work on the world stage and exercise your leadership. You will be the first students learning under this new education system. I encourage all of you to try your best and make use of all the resources that Tokyo Tech provides. Do this, and you will see tremendous personal growth.

I suspect that many of you entering master's and professional degree programs already possess a strong motivation to improve society with your knowledge and skills in the field of science and technology. Tokyo Tech is ready to provide you with an excellent education, an education that lights the fire of engagement in your being. I ask you to strive to become the best you can be in the areas you have chosen, and truly understand the purpose and meaning of your research and vision. Many of you will go on to work in various industries after graduation, and those industries will greatly benefit from your unique perspective, skills, and knowledge. I believe that having a clear idea of what you want to do and knowing what you want to contribute to society will lead you to meaningful learning. I have no doubt that all of you will embrace challenge with spirit, enthusiasm, and confidence as you progress towards your future careers.

If you are considering pursuing a doctorate after completing your master's degree, I encourage you to look into our integrated education system for master's and doctoral programs. This system makes it possible to take doctoral-level classes while you are enrolled in the master's program. If you are motivated to study and meet the requirements, you can finish both the master's and doctoral programs in three years. In addition, Tokyo Tech provides four Programs for Leading Graduate Schools adopted by Japan's Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. These programs are administered in collaboration with industries and aim to develop talented individuals who go beyond the borders of specialties and are capable of taking initiative in a wide range of fields.

For those who are entering doctoral programs today, I strongly encourage you to openly experience both success and failure. By now, you may think that failure is unacceptable. However, you are still students and Tokyo Tech is the ideal setting for you to accept the challenge of cutting-edge research — a place where you are encouraged to try, fail, learn from your failures, and gradually go on to enjoy the pleasures of success. As you do this, you may also begin to consider the direction you wish to take after completing the program. There are many choices open to you. You may choose to pursue world-class research at a university or research institution, boost Japanese industry through a career in engineering, or establish new industries as an entrepreneur. Whatever your choice, Tokyo Tech will help you to become aware of your role in developing a new and better world through science and technology, and will strengthen your enthusiasm and confidence as an outstanding leader.

Lastly, I ask all of you to aim to integrate into global society. You may have heard similar words before, but the ability to integrate globally equates to the ability to live in today's diverse society. Tokyo Tech provides you with an outstanding education and an environment in which to fully develop this ability. Our past approaches and future goals have been highly regarded by the Japanese government. In 2014, Tokyo Tech was selected for a long-term project, the Top Global University Project, which aims to further enhance international compatibility and competitiveness. This government support is a favorable wind for the new education system commencing this year.

Tokyo Tech continues to strive for outstanding quality in education, enhanced research capabilities through the improvement of the educational environment, and productive research collaboration. As the Institute rapidly moves forward, I hope you too give weight to acquiring and maintaining an international mindset as you prepare to play an active role on the global stage.

Once again, congratulations to all of you.

April 4, 2016
Yoshinao Mishima
President, Tokyo Tech