Tokyo Tech News
The Tokyo Tech Academy for Convergence of Materials and Informatics (TAC-MI) held an online session on September 28, 2021 for master's students to present their latest research findings and receive career guidance from TAC-MI member companies. This was the second event of its kind in academic year 2021 after TAC-MI's doctoral students presented their research at the June 30 session.
In the first part of the September event, 21 master's students gave poster presentations to approximately 110 TAC-MI program staff members, students, and industrial collaborators. In the second part, TAC-MI students held interviews and received advice from their industrial mentors. The third part was an industry-academic exchange event, during which 25 TAC-MI member companies introduced themselves for the purpose of career guidance to TAC-MI students.
Part 1: Poster presentations by master's students
Part 2: TAC-MI students' interviews with industrial mentors
Part 3: Industry-academia exchange event: Company introductions for career guidance to TAC-MI students
Part 4: Exchange meeting
After brief opening words from School of Materials and Chemical Technology Dean Masahiro Susa and TAC-MI Director Takeo Yamaguchi, the online poster presentations kicked off.
Ten breakout sessions were created in Zoom presentation rooms, with 10 master's students presenting during the first hour, and another 11 presenting during the second hour. Each student gave three 20-minute presentations. Seven second-year doctoral students and TAC-MI faculty members were in charge of moderation and timekeeping in each breakout room.
The students explained the background of their projects, their research findings, how they utilize informatics in their work, and how they plan to proceed with future research, ensuring that even non-specialized audiences understood the significance of their research. They devised clear explanations of their work, enlarged and reduced their posters so that their online audiences could easily view them, and managed their time appropriately so that the sessions were completed smoothly.
"Even though the students are still master's students, I was surprised that their research and presentation abilities were very high," one industrial collaborator commented. "Many students were able to explain their work in an easy-to-understand manner, and I am looking forward to seeing their growth as they progress to doctoral programs."
In the second part of the event, master's students held interviews with and received advice from their industrial mentors. TAC-MI students have the advantage of evaluating their strengths and weakness in face-to-face meetings with researchers, developers, technical experts, product planners, and marketing professionals from various industries. One industrial mentor is assigned to each student. Throughout the duration of this program, each student has an industrial mentor who continuously guides the student from enrollment to program completion. Master's students meet their mentors once a year, while doctoral students meet them twice a year. After listening to the poster presentations in the first part, industrial mentors gave various useful tips to the students regarding research activities, future careers, and other aspects of their development.
The third part of the day was an industry-academia exchange event, during which 25 TAC-MI member companies introduced themselves for the purpose of career guidance to TAC-MI students. Again, this event was conducted using Zoom breakout sessions, during which the companies introduced themselves in each room.
The students commented as follows:
"It was a good opportunity for students to ask positive questions about work in companies and career paths for doctoral students," one industrial collaborator commented. "I hope that interaction with students will become more frequent in the future."
At the exchange event, in addition to learning about the business activities of the participating companies, the students also gained valuable knowledge about the human resources required by these firms, and about the fields where doctoral graduates can play active roles.
Through regular exchange events such as this with companies, TAC-MI aims to cultivate multi-talented individuals required by industry who apply a broad, global perspective to understanding new social services and creating new ideas.
TAC-MI, established in January 2019 under the auspices of the Doctoral Program for World-leading Innovative & Smart Education (WISE) of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, aims to cultivate multi-talented individuals who can play a leading role in creating new industry and academic field involving materials science, information science, and social services. The program also places strong emphasis on working closely with industry.