To Become the University that Fosters Creative Individuals
We are now in the 21st century that we have long looked forward to with hope. The reality, however, is that we face ever-growing chaos in every sector of society, including in the field of education. In a society filled with a sense of stagnation, professionals who are engaged in higher education have the responsibility of raising capable individuals who can transform such circumstances. Throughout the years, the mission of Soka University has been to foster Creative Individuals who can embody the founding principles of the University and create new value in society.
Action Plan in the Soka University Grand Design Initiative
Since unveiling the first Education Vision in April 1998, the president of Soka University has announced an Education Vision at the beginning of each academic year. The Education Vision reflects a wide range of feedback from the University bureaus and departments and assesses the degree of achievement and development at the end of each academic year. This working process creates a cycle to design a new Education Vision for the following year, forming a backbone of the University management.
Action Plan 2018
2018 President Vision
In February, the results of the mid-term evaluation of the “Top Global University Project” was announced, and the university received the best possible grade “S” (S/A/B/C/D grading system). In the mid-term evaluation, the university was evaluated as “currently in an outstanding effort situation, will be able to achieve the goals of the program,” in addition to “sincere efforts for education and improvements to raise secure learning outcomes and information sharing, leading to excellent outcomes of the university management by the faculty and staff is the ultimate point of emphasis in the high evaluation.” It is our greatest joy to receive recognition for all the efforts that the faculty and staff has been working as one toward globalization. I would express my appreciation for all the support. You can also say that this year will mark as the 2nd departure for the year 2023, the final year for this project. In this year, English Medium Programs, courses that students can graduate only with the English language, will officially start the acceptance for September entrance. In addition, this year marking the 5th year since the university was selected for “Acceleration Program for University Education Rebuilding,” we will continue to make effort toward the program focusing on “active learning.”
In April, through the “Top Global University Project,” the Graduate School of International Peace Studies was newly established. In addition, the Distance Learning Division also newly opened the Faculty of Letters. The university organization is now 8 Faculties, 5 graduate schools, 2 professional graduate schools, and 4 faculties of distance learning. A new curriculum begin from April for 6 faculties excluding the Faculty of Science and Engineering and Faculty of Nursing. With the upgraded system by establishing an assessment policy, the university will not only make effort in enhancing educational programs but to also establish a system that can visualize and evaluate in order to foster creative global citizens and to achieve the goals of the Grand Design.
Last year in 2017, the newly built male and female international dormitories welcomed the incoming students and the Grand Design 3rd stage began. In this one year, there were many eye openers of student achievements. In the student section for the “Yunus & Youth Social Business Design Contest 2017,” Faculty of Business Administration Associate Professor Yasuda’s seminar had won and was able to participate in the “Global Social Business Summit 2017” held in Paris, France. At the “All-Japan Collegiate Debate Championship”, Soka University won 1st place. Furthermore, women representatives of 24 countries and regions, regarding to the G20 countries, Soka University’s female student represented Japan for the third consecutive year at the “G(irls) 20 Summit 2017” held in Munich, Germany. Moreover, 8 students were selected for the “Tobitate! (Leap for Tomorrow) Study Abroad Initiative,” a public-private effort for the future of Japan lead by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT). The number of selected students ranked 3rd out of all public universities. Other than these, students have demonstrated their daily achievements in many fields such as participating in international conferences, contests, certification examinations, career paths, and contributions in the community.
In the research field, Soka University’s initiative of “Research and development of appropriate technologies for the creation of a sustainable recycling-oriented society in developing countries and formation of a new regional industrial foundation” was selected for the “Private University Research Branding Project,” lead by MEXT. Also, for one of projects of the “JICA Partnership Program,” aiming towards the solution of the environmental issues in the island countries of the Pacific Ocean and Federated States of Micronesia, Hachioji City and Soka University signed an agreement to become partners for this program.
Not just the students, faculty and staff were able to demonstration their efforts, by the daily support from all around Japan and also from other countries as well. We would like to express our deepest gratitude.
Finally, Soka University Grand Design will enter the 3rd stage and approaching the year 2020, which we have set for the final goal. The initiatives aiming to foster “creative individuals” and “creative global citizens” are entering its final stages.
This academic year also marks the 50th anniversary of the Founder, Dr. Daisaku Ikeda, announcing the “Proposal for the Normalization of Sino-Japanese Relations.” To commemorate this, symposiums will be held in September at Soka University and October in China. By reaffirming the proposal, we hope this opportunity will further deepen the relationship between China and Japan even more.
Two big projects will be newly considered this year. One is the commemorative project for the 50th anniversary of the founding and the second is to plan the next mid and long-term project after the year 2021. Through the support of many, the preparations for these projects will begin.
The year 2018 being a start for the last 3 years of the Soka University Grand Design, it is also a start for planning toward the next years after the 50th anniversary. With the determinations to make this year a fulfilled and productive year than before, advancing forward as university that fosters creative global citizens, here we announce the 2018 President Vision.
Until now, the President of Soka University has announced visions and goals of each fiscal year with the name of “Educational Vision”. In recent years, the Educational Vision has been announcing its visions and also regarding initiatives of the Grand Design, such as education, research, student support, international exchanges, and lifelong education. The content, not only about education, it has been covering a wide range of topics. Therefore, starting from this fiscal year, the name of the announcement of the efforts will change from “Educational Vision” to “President Vision.”