Tokyo Tech News
The 9th Student Support Forum was held on March 7 at Ookayama Campus. Hosted by the Student Initiative Support Office, the event served as an excellent opportunity for autonomous student bodies to share information on their activities, and to explore possibilities for interuniversity collaboration in current and future projects.
Participants included students and faculty from the University of Tokyo, Tsukuba University, Chiba University, Kyoto University, Tama University, Meiji University, in addition to Tokyo Tech students, staff, and alumni. This year, a record 56 people participated.
After a short greeting from Tokyo Tech President Yoshinao Mishima and a summary of activities sponsored by the Student Initiative Support Office from School of Engineering Professor Tetsuji Okamura, students gave detailed presentations on the content and significance of their activities. Each presentation was followed by a wave of questions and comments from the audience.
Four Tokyo Tech students shared their thoughts on the significance of the forum.
(Academic affiliations are as of the date of the event.)
As a student of Tokyo Tech, I feel there are very few chances to create student-initiated international exchanges. Awareness of organizations such as SAGE is still low among students, and it is important to increase this awareness proactively. While this was a great opportunity to share information regarding our activities, we also openly welcomed all opinions from faculty and student members of other organizations, which provide motivation for the future.
This was my third time participating in this forum. As always, it was a precious opportunity to learn what other organizations, whose activities rarely intersect with ours, are doing. Both the oral and poster presentations were very stimulating. At the moment these forums are held once a year, but I feel we could increase the frequency to promote deeper exchange among the different organizations.
This year, I spoke to the audience about Tokyo Tech's 2014 Student Survey, how it has affected the Institute, and the outlook for the 2016 survey. Chances to share information about the Student Survey are limited, but this year many Tokyo Tech students were present at the forum, so I felt I could really spread the word effectively. The presentations from other organizations were very interesting, and I think we can continue to provide stronger support and encouragement to each other.
After my presentation, I was lucky enough to get plenty of feedback on our project from students and faculty at Tokyo Tech and other universities. What I am most impressed with is the increasing cooperation between the various organizations. Each year we can exchange views and ideas with members of other organizations, which opens up opportunities to work on joint projects and create new ones. Whatever the case, I expect to apply what I learned at this year's forum to future projects.
After the oral presentations, panel presentations followed. In addition to the organizations mentioned above, presentations were also given by six others — Peer Supporters, Techno girls, Tokyo Tech Alumni Association's student committee, Robogals, Encouragement Project for All Tokyo Tech Students (EPATS), and Tokyo Tech International Student Association (TISA). With more organizations and more students participating from both Tokyo Tech and other universities, this year's panel presentations also proved to be both informative and fruitful in terms of future efforts.
Post-event questionnaires included useful suggestions for improvement. A particularly interesting idea was the creation of a concrete system allowing organizations to smoothly and easily collaborate and support each other. Faculty members from participating universities acknowledged the value of holding forums on an interuniversity level. This year's forum moderator, second-year electrical and electronic engineering student Shingo Kato comments, "It is important for us to inform people of how students are proactively seeking solutions to problems, and for these activities to be properly evaluated. With the growing participant numbers, I not only sensed an increased motivation in students, but also a real feeling of community building."