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Tokyo Tech-AYSEAS 2019

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November 27, 2019

Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) in Indonesia hosted the 2019 iteration of the Tokyo Tech-Asia Young Scientist and Engineer Advanced Study (AYSEAS) program, held from August 27 to September 6. This year, the program brought together 11 bachelor-level students from Tokyo Tech and 13 undergraduate and graduate students from ITB, Gadjah Mada University (Indonesia), De La Salle University (the Philippines), and King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang (Thailand), and Hanoi University of Science and Technology (Vietnam).

Campus tour at ITB

Campus tour at ITB

Program overview

Tokyo Tech-AYSEAS is a joint educational program organized annually by Tokyo Tech and partner universities to bring together students from universities in Japan, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, and Vietnam for a 10-day program hosted by a participating university. Through site visits, discussions, and communication with students from different backgrounds, AYSEAS participants learn about and experience the dynamism of rapidly growing ASEAN countries.

The 2019 program kicked off in the vibrant capital city of Jakarta before participants moved to Bandang, known for its universities and cooler temperatures. The students engaged in program-organized activities that included visits to local Indonesian and Japanese companies, as well as to construction sites for projects funded through development assistance from the Japanese government. The visits were intended to deepen students' understanding of issues surrounding Indonesia's continuing economic growth as well as the relationships between Japan and ASEAN countries.

On train to Bandung
On train to Bandung

Participants share their cultures
Participants share their cultures

Each day, the students applied their individual expertise and the knowledge they acquired through the site visits to group discussions about specific issues faced by Indonesia and participants' home countries. Topics included economic growth and disparity, healthcare and overpopulation, the pros and cons of technology transfer, innovation and global competition, and issues in Indonesian agriculture. On the last day of the program, AYSEAS participants made group presentations in which they proposed novel solutions to issues of their choice.

The program also included a company visit to observe production of Kopi Luwak, Indonesia's famous coffee, and an excursion to Saung Angklung Udjo, a venue where participants enjoyed a traditional Indonesian cultural performance featuring the angklung, a musical instrument made from bamboo. Later, at a cultural exchange party, the students introduced their own cultures via presentations, performances, and games.

These experiences deepened participants' understanding of the regional history and cultures of Southeast Asia. In addition, by traveling together and sharing accommodations, meals, and a common goal, AYSEAS participants developed valuable cross-cultural communication skills as well as new friendships.

Company visit
Company visit

Group discussions
Group discussions

A debriefing session was held at Tokyo Tech on October 16. The Institute's AYSEAS participants reported on their experiences in the program and shared more developed versions of the group presentations they had made in Indonesia. Finally, Executive Vice President for Education Tetsuya Mizumoto presented each student with a certificate of program completion.

Program Schedule

June - July
Pre-departure orientation sessions (lectures by Tokyo Tech professor and visiting lecturer, briefing on general information about Indonesia, visit to Ebara Corporation Fujisawa Plant, research presentations)
August 27
Arrival in Jakarta, Indonesia followed by ice-breaking session
August 28
Presentation on Nomura Research Institute Indonesia's activities
Presentation on GnB Accelerator’s activities
GnB's symposium featuring presentations by founders of successful start-ups
Visit to MPP Office Building Project (skyscraper construction site)
August 29
Arrival in Bandung by train, AYSEAS opening ceremony, campus tour of ITB
August 30
Factory tours at Chemco Harapan Nusantara and Ajinomoto Indonesia
August 31
Excursion to Kopi Luwak Cikole and Floating Market Lembang
September 1
Excursion to Saung Angklung Udjo
September 2
Cultural exchange party
September 3
Site visit to Patimban Port Development Project, including toll road and new port
September 4
Factory tour at Astra Honda Motor, seminar introducing Tokyo Tech's study programs for international students
September 5
Final presentations, closing ceremony
September 6
Return to Japan
October 16
Debriefing session at Tokyo Tech

AYSEAS 2019 participating universities

Japan: Tokyo Tech

Indonesia: Bandung Institute of Technology (host university), Gadjah Mada University

Thailand: King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang

The Philippines: De La Salle University

Vietnam: Hanoi University of Science and Technology

Participants' experiences

Rio Tatami, 1st year, Life Science and Technology

I found the Tokyo-Tech AYSEAS program when I was thinking about how to spend my first summer vacation as a university student. I decided to participate in this program not only to improve my English skills, but also to broaden my horizons and make friends overseas. AYSEAS was a great program that packed a lot in a short period. I had valuable experiences, and all of the students were very friendly. Thanks to them, we had fun conversations, and I think I gradually developed my English skills.

Through discussions with students from overseas, I noticed the differences in our cultures, backgrounds, and ways of thinking. I also learned from differences between what I thought I understood about Indonesia and the actual situation there. At the presentations on the last day, each team showed originality not only in their content but also in their presentation methods. In the future, I would like to improve my discussion techniques and presentation methods.

Terima kasih, thank you!

At Kopi Luwak Cicole
At Kopi Luwak Cicole

After group presentations
After group presentations

Kenta Kubota, 2nd year, Mechanical Engineering

I was interested for a long time in studying abroad. I wanted to improve my English skills and make friends overseas, and I happened to learn about AYSEAS. To be honest, I didn't know much about the program contents, and I had a lot of fear of studying abroad, but I eagerly applied for it.

The program included tours of factories of major Japanese companies, talks by Japanese people living and working in Indonesia, group presentations, and more. It was a really intense program.

However, the most memorable part was my interaction with students from the other countries. My roommate was Thai. We weren't able to get along on first day, but as we spent time together, we were able to get along better. Our farewell was really hard, and on the bus leaving Bandung, I felt a rush of emotion. Even now, we are still in contact.

Although it was a short program, the ethnological, national, and cultural boundaries between us collapsed, and for me personally, the religious differences between us were completely shattered. I would like to save money so I can study abroad again.

On fashionable street in Bandung
On fashionable street in Bandung

At restaurant in suburbs of Bandung
At restaurant in suburbs of Bandung

Hirofumi Matsue, 4th year, Materials Science

The interaction between participants from various countries is one of the distinguishing features of Tokyo Tech-AYSEAS. This time we went to Indonesia, but participants included students from universities in Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines and Thailand.

Communication between students basically took place in English. I was able to communicate with other non-native English speakers from Asia and experienced a different way of communicating than I had had with people from English-speaking countries.

In the factory tours, it was exciting to see how what I am learning at Tokyo Tech is being employed in various manufacturing processes. In addition, when I helped my group prepare our presentation for the final day of the program, I felt a sense of accomplishment because I was able to apply skills I gained at the Institute to look up research and to create presentation slides.

Finally, as a student leader of AYSEAS 2019, I was really impressed that all 24 participants became good friends over the course of the program.

Visit to Patimban Port
Visit to Patimban Port

Chatting at coffee shop
Chatting at coffee shop

Contact

International Student Exchange Division, Student Services Department

Email ayseas@jim.titech.ac.jp

Tel +81-3-5734-3433

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