Tokyo Tech News
Published: April 17, 2019
Masahiko Shibayama, Japan's Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, visited Tokyo Tech's Ookayama Campus on January 24.
The minister's campus visit began with a meeting with President Kazuya Masu and his executive team. Masu presented an overview of Tokyo Tech's recent reforms in governance under strengthened leadership by the president. He also explained the Institute's student-centered education system and the achievements of Tokyo Tech in creating new interdisciplinary fields of research together with industry and overseas institutions. Shibayama expressed interest in the roles of the deans and directors in the new governance system, and the updated curricula offered by Tokyo Tech.
The tour continued to the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI), where Shibayama met Director Kei Hirose and Executive Director Mary Voytek. Hirose outlined the interdisciplinary nature of ELSI's approach to exploring the origins of Earth and life, and highlighted the growing number of collaborations with institutions such as Harvard University and the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.
Shibayama also got a taste of Tokyo Tech's liberal arts program — a pillar of the recent education reforms that extends to all students. Institute for Liberal Arts Dean Noriyuki Ueda introduced the courses that constitute the core of the dynamic program. He explained that ILA encourages all students to develop their own vision, and aims to foster the social skills, humanity, and creativity required of 21st-century leaders creating a better future.
The minister's visit finished with an open discussion with students regarding the results of the Tokyo Tech Visionary Project and Liberal Arts Final Report courses. In true active learning style, Shibayama joined five bachelor-level students and one master's-level student on the floor of a newly refurbished room to listen to their experiences in combining science and technology studies with the liberal arts.
Institute for Liberal Arts
—Connecting Science and Technology with Society—
Information on Institute for Liberal Arts inaugurated in April 2016