Excerpts of Reports by 2017 Summer Scholarship Recipients

As reported in Newsletter #17, eight University of Tokyo (UTokyo) students and ten U.S. students received the 2017 FUTI Global Leadership Awards (FUTI-GLA). The FUTI summer scholarship award, a.k.a. the “FUTI Global Leadership Award (FUTI-GLA),” is designed to nurture future global leaders of Japan and the U.S. One of the selection criteria is a demonstration of leadership quality. Selected excerpts of their reports are shown in this article.
In addition to the summer scholarships, FUTI also awarded USA Ito Foundation-FUTI scholarships to nine UTokyo students as reported in Newsletter #17 for their studies of one semester or longer in the U.S. during the 2017-18 academic year. However, their reports are not yet available online.
The list of summer 2017 award recipients are posted on our website. For full reports, please click here.
Highlights from UTokyo Students’ Reports
The eight UTokyo students who spent the summer in the U.S. reported that classroom and lab work was intensive and highly valuable. Many were impressed by discussion-intensive U.S. classrooms and learned the importance of expressing their critical views. They commented that the experience helped them to re-evaluate their career plans. They also made many friends of various nationalities and started to build a global professional network.

Keita Morikawa (left)

Keita Morikawa
University of Tokyo, Medicine, Junior
Stanford University: Medical Exchange and Discovery
The life and programs with medical students gathered from the United States and Asia were full of new awareness every day. I had an opportunity to “shadow” a clinician at Stanford Medicine Emergency Care, but the opportunity to ask about his perspective on the medical system in the United States was invaluable. I also realize that public health and socioeconomic challenges remain serious issues in many countries of the world. I would like to make efforts to “create a healthier world” with colleagues from all over the world I met in this program.

Campus scene at Harvard

Mayu Yamamoto
University of Tokyo, Agriculture, Junior
Harvard University Summer School: Crisis and Strategy in US Foreign Policy
Classmates in the foreign policy course were quite diverse and included regular Harvard students, former soldiers of the Iraq War, and journalists. Sometimes a fierce discussion took place during the class. It gave me much confidence that I was able to successfully survive this challenging summer school course. Although it was only three weeks, I learned a great deal in addition to the new academic knowledge and improved English language skills. I would like to express my gratitude to FUTI for the generous support to aid in this study.
Highlights from U.S. Students’ Reports
The ten students from U.S. universities invariably reported that they gained valuable knowledge or research skills at UTokyo labs and classrooms. Outside the campus, they enjoyed company visits and traditional culture like tea ceremony through which they developed a respect for the unique characteristics of Japanese society and culture. They hope to put the summer experience to good use in their future studies and career.

William Yarinsky (right) working on the solar panels

William Yarinsky
Rice University, mechanical engineering, sophomore
University of Tokyo Research Internship Program (UTRIP)
Prof. Hideaki Murayama Lab
At Prof. Murayama’s lab on the solar boat project, I worked closely with a team of UTokyo students and learned a great deal from it. I hope that this experience will help me gain employment at companies both inside and outside of the United States, especially Japan. I believe I was seen by the lab colleagues as a student and engineer who can embrace cultural differences, solve problems, and become an asset to a project. The experience will benefit me greatly not only to my life as an engineer, but also to my life as a student, and as a person. I feel grateful to FUTI and UTRIP which made this invaluable experience possible.

Beatrice Ciabattoni giving a presentation

Beatrice Ciabattoni
UC Berkeley, College of Environmental Design, Sustainable Environmental Design, Freshman
IARU, Global Summer Program (GSP): Sustainable Urban Development
With classmates coming from the top universities all over the world, the experience of studying at UTokyo was, while challenging, very enriching. Our team had to propose a solution to stop the flooding of the Arasaki district in Japan. This trip was an eye-opening experience and made me feel so fulfilled …I will put this knowledge to good use in my future studies and career and hope to see all these incredible people again in another country. Thank you to FUTI for allowing and supporting me in this adventure and strongly contributing to my development and positively impacting my future.

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