Tohoku University Global Leader Award - Winter 2023/24

Twenty-four students have been awarded the Tohoku University Global Leader certificate for Winter 2023/24. The ceremony was held on February 15 at Katahira Campus.

The Global Leader programme is an important part of the university's efforts to promote intercultural collaborative learning. Japanese students receive the Global Leader certification after collecting points from classes and activities that encourage a global mindset. These include participating in study abroad or international programmes, doing volunteer work and passing foreign language proficiency tests.

In his congratulatory speech, President Hideo Ohno said that as a Designated National University, it is important for Tohoku University to develop leaders who can help to address the world's biggest issues, such as climate change, demographic shifts and geopolitical crises.

"Now, more than ever, we need leaders who can tackle these challenges from a global standpoint and contribute to peace. We need individuals who can comprehend diverse social contexts and economic systems, communicate effectively, think flexibly, and work alongside people from different nations and cultures," he said. "I encourage you to strive to become such leaders, and to serve as a bridge between Japan and the rest of the world as we work towards a sustainable future."

Sota Yoshimoto, a fourth-year student from the Faculty of Science who gave a speech on behalf of the recipients, said the Global Leader programme helped him to develop a more open attitude towards different perspectives.

"Before I entered university, I believed that I could rely only on myself to achieve my own goals. This was because I was afraid of expressing myself and thought it was more efficient to get everything done by myself," he said. "But I was wrong. I have learned the significant power of connecting with others. Study abroad and international experiences taught me that."

He added that he hoped students who have gone through the programme, who share a similar ambition of being true global leaders, can stay connected with one another, to support and learn from each other.

Following the ceremony, the students had a brief, informal talk session with President Ohno, EVP for Education and Student Support Hirotsugu Takizawa and VP for Education Reform and Global Engagement Masahiro Yamaguchi. The students sought advice and anecdotes about life after graduation and starting a career.

Since the programme began in 2013, more than 240 students have been awarded the Global Leader certificate. In AY2023, 41 students received the award, the highest number ever in an academic year.


Student Exchange Division
Tel: +81-22-795-7820

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