Taiwan-Japan exchange program and University-High School Collaboration
High-school version of Sakura Science Program@ Tohoku University

Systems Neuroscience Prof. MUSHIAKE, Hajime

Japan-Asia Youth Science Exchange Program in Science, “SAKURA Science Program ” in short, was launched by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) from since April 2014. The mission of this program was to facilitate short-term visits of competent Asian young people to Japan and to increase the interest of Asian students and young researchers in studying science and technology at leading Japanese universities. Since this program was announced by the JST, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine (TUGM) joined the SAKURA science program in collaboration with Tohoku Tabunka Academy Foundation (TTA), an incorporated foundation that supports short-term study in Japan from abroad. Our programs were accepted four times and more than 70 young scientists. In this report, we introduce a new exchange program for high school students to learn science and technology at Tohoku University.

Planning High-school version of Sakura Science

Super Science High School, “SSH”, in short is another program through which JST promote education for science and technology in high school levels. Schools with SSH status receive increased funding and are encouraged to develop links with universities and other academic institutions. High schools with SSH prioritize science, technology, and mathematics. Miyagi Prefecture Sendai-Daiichi High School (Sendai-1 High school) has been designated as SSH since 2012 and Tohoku university Graduate schools and related institutes (including Research Institute of Electrical Communication(RIEC), International Research Institute of Disaster Science(IRIDeS),  Medical Megabank organization(ToMMo) ) collaborate with Sendai-1 High school.

At April in 2018, Sendai-1 High School proudly announced that the second-term of SSH. In this second term, they have planned international exchange with Taiwan High schools in terms of science and technology education. To coordinate international exchange programs, Sendai-1 High School collaborates with TTA to implement their program. Actually, at the last year of 1st term of SSH, Taiwan High schools visit Tohoku university and also Sendai-1 High School. Students from both Taiwanese and Japanese high schools had good opportunities to share their scientific researches in poster sessions and scientific workshops with faculties from Tohoku University.

At High-school version of Sakura Science Program 2018, we invite fourteen students from National Nantou Senior High  school and Taipei Municipal Datong High school with two supervising teachers to Tohoku university and Sendai-1 High School. In this program, intercultural communication among Taiwanese and Japanese high school students will be cultivated and University-High School Collaboration will be also enhanced in terms of education of science and technology. Actually, Sendai-1 High School is planning their students to Taiwan universities and high schools with their scientific researches. This is literally a two-direction (exchange) program.

Welcome to Tohoku University and Autumn-colored Sendai city

From 21st to 30th October, Taiwan high school students visit Japan. During this short-term stay, They visited RIEC and learn Encryption technology and learn perceptual psychology at IRIDeS. They visited disaster areas damaged by Tsunami 2011 with guidance of instructors of IRIDeS. At Medical school、they learn Resilience and neuroscience. They visit ToMMo and learn how they try to rebuild the community medical system with innovative new biobank technology. They also had opportunities to experience medical skill training at Comprehensive Education Center for Community Medicine at Tohoku University, graduate school of medicine.

At Sendai-1 High School, Taiwan high school students joined poster presentation session in SSH programs and present their scientific researches. In this poster session, faculties from Tohoku University participated and had discussions with them. There was also a workshop of physics.  Taiwanese and Japanese students work together to solve scientific tasks. Furthermore, individual students of Taiwanese students stayed at host families of Sendai-1 High School student. In this way, multicultural understandings are cultivated in terms of science and humanities in Taiwan and Japanese high schools.

multicultural relationships between high school and university

Through these international exchange programs, we hope that multicultural and interdisciplinary mindset grows in participants.  I am very glad that some of participants are interested in global leadership programs offered by Tohoku University. Finally, we are grateful to JST, TTA, faculties of Tohoku university, and faculties and families of high schools for their dedicated supports.


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