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9th Tokyo Tech Student Support Forum held

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Published: July 8, 2016

Opening address from President MishimaOpening address from President Mishima

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.

Oral presentation session
Oral presentation session

Oral presentation session

Four Tokyo Tech students shared their thoughts on the significance of the forum.

(Academic affiliations are as of the date of the event.)

Mio Kamasaka (1st year, 3rd Academic Group, Department of Engineering)
Tokyo Tech's Student Association for Global Exchange (SAGE)

Mio Kamasaka (1st year, 3rd Academic Group, Department of Engineering)

As a student of Tokyo Tech, I feel there are very few chances to create student-initiated international exchanges. Awareness of organizations such as SAGEouter 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.

Junpei Kuribayashi (3rd year, Polymer Chemistry)
Tokyo Tech Volunteer Group

Junpei Kuribayashi (3rd year, Polymer Chemistry)

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.

Yuki Kojima (2nd year, Physics)
Student Survey Group

Yuki Kojima (2nd year, Physics)

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.

Takayuki Kishi, (3rd year, Control and Systems Engineering)
STEM Students Discovery and Development Project

Takayuki Kishi, (3rd year, Control and Systems Engineering)

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.

Panel presentations

Panel presentations

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)outer. 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.

Moderator Shingo Kato

Moderator Shingo Kato

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."

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