Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Bubble wrap heaven?

Have you ever wanted to just sit and pop bubble wrap forever? Now you can.

A Japanese company has come out with the 無限ぷちぷち (limitless popper). Here's their promotional video:

http://www.asovision.com/putiputi/movie.html

There's also a 無限枝豆 (limitless edamame) for those who enjoy the sensation of shelling peas, as well as a 無限缶ビールのプルタブ (limitless beer can tab) :

http://www.asovision.com/products/index.php

Monday, April 25, 2016

Border-Crossing in the East Asian Cultural Sphere | East Asian Languages and Literatures | The George Washington University

This looks interesting. Make sure to register asap.

Border-Crossing in the East Asian Cultural Sphere

Border image
This one-day interdisciplinary symposium explores how the language systems and art forms of East Asia (China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam, among others) reflect multiple and intertwined paths of cultural flow. Invited specialists from a range of humanities fields will present on how ideas and inspirations from East Asia traveled across and beyond spatial, linguistic, and national borders to flourish in new dynamic forms of multiculturalism.

When

Saturday, April 30, 2016
9:00am - 5:00pm

Where

Funger Hall
2201 G St NW
103
Washington, District Of Columbia 20052

TO REGISTER CLICK HEREBorder-Crossing in the East Asian Cultural Sphere | East Asian Languages and Literatures | The George Washington University

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Peter Valente wins Boren Fellowship!

Peter Valente, a graduate student here at AU studying in the Japanese Program, has been selected to receive a Boren Fellowship to study in Japan for the coming academic year. バレンテさん、本当におめでとうございます!

Security Forum: American and Japanese Interests and the Future of the Alliance (Sasakawa USA)

Sasakawa USA's Third Annual Security Forum: American and Japanese Interests and the Future of the Alliance

On May 6, 2016, Sasakawa USA will bring together key security experts and officials from government, business, think tanks, and academia for its Third Annual Security Forum. Building upon the success of previous security forums, this event will focus on the new U.S.-Japan Defense guidelines, Japan's recently passed security legislation, and the future of the U.S.-Japan alliance.

Sasakawa USA is pleased to welcome distinguished guests including Japanese Minister Shigeru Ishiba, former Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet Scott Swift, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Chief of Staff Tomohisa Takei, Michael Chertoff, Ambassador Kenichiro Sasae, Ambassador Ryozo Kato, Ambassador Richard Armitage, former Japanese Minister of Defense Satoshi Morimoto, Michèle Flournoy and many others, for this high-level discussion.

Space is limited for this event and available on a first-come, first-served basis. RSVP now to reserve your spot.

Japan Political Pulse: Impact of new teenage voters uncertain  

This summer's House of Councillors (HOC) elections will be the first in which Japan's eighteen- and nineteen-year-olds can vote.In his latest piece for Japan Political Pulse, Sasakawa USA Fellow Tobias Harris analyzes an Asahi Shimbun survey to better understand the potential impact of this new group of voters who
are less favorably disposed to the Abe government than the electorate as a whole.  Click here for the analysis and the latest approval/disapproval ratings. 
   
In the News: MAP, Hiroshima, and cybersecurity
Kerry's visit to Hiroshima shows strength of U.S.-Japan alliance: U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's visit last week to Hiroshima's Peace Memorial Park is symbolic of the friendship between the two nations and the strength of the U.S.-Japan alliance, Sasakawa USA's Dr. Jeffrey Hornung said in an April 12 article in the Mainichi Shimbun.  Click here to read the article and an English-language version of the interview. 
 
Japan gets serious about cybersecurity as Olympics approach:
New strategies to combat cybercrime in Japan will take time to become effective but are vital to containing and reducing cyber threats, Sasakawa USA's Admiral Dennis C. Blair said in an article featured in Japan TodayClick here to read the article. 
   
From Nippon.com: Political shiftings and high court rulings
Rebranding the DPJ: Old Wine in a New Bottle? On March 27, the Democratic Party of Japan, previously the nation's number one opposition party,merged with the smaller Japan Innovation Party in a bid to unify Japan's badly fragmented opposition going into this summer's House of Councillors election. This data analysis looks at how the merger came to be, shifting allegiances, and the makeup of the party now. Click here to read more. 
 
High Court Decisions Augur Long Road to Women's Equality in Japan: On December 16 last year, the Supreme Court delivered a ruling on a closely watched case regarding the right of spouses to maintain separate surnames after marriage. In this op-ed, author Muta Kazue analyzes that decision and looks to the future. Click here to read more.    
Photo Gallery: National Cherry Blossom Festival events

The Evolution of American Perceptions on Japan through Film: On April 6, Sasakawa USA celebrated more than seventy years of friendship between the United States and Japan in film with a clip reel viewing and panel discussion looking at films that portray Japan. Here's a look back on the event, in photos.
Upcoming events: April & May 2016

Upcoming Career Forums! (from Disco International)


I received this message from Disco International:

Students with some degree of both Japanese and English language abilities are invited to come speak and interview with hiring companies for full-time and internship positions at this summer and fall's Career Forums. Positions are located worldwide. We encourage you to explore future options and make connections even if you have a few years left before graduation. Be proactive!

In the U.S.
================
Los Angeles Career Forum (Oct. 7 & 8)
http://www.careerforum.net/event/la/?ref=042016JPNs&lang=E
*Approximately 30 hiring companies
*Scholarships available to help cover travel expenses

Boston Career Forum (Nov. 18 - 20)
Website available from mid-May
*Approximately 200 hiring companies
*Scholarships available to help cover travel expenses

In Japan
================
Tokyo Summer Career Forum (June 25 & 26)
http://www.careerforum.net/event/tks/?ref=042016JPNs&lang=E
*Approximately 250 hiring companies

Osaka Summer Career Forum (June 30)
http://www.careerforum.net/event/osks/?ref=042016JPNs&lang=E
*Approximately 60 hiring companies

Full Career Forum schedule available here: http://www.careerforum.net/event/?ref=042016JPNs&lang=E

If you have questions about any of the Career Forums, please contact us at cfn@careerforum.net



(This disco guy was my own contribution. - Ken Knight)

Monday, April 18, 2016

Talk on "Gender Equality in Japan and the Impact of Womenomics"

Sasakawa USA Speaker Series 
"Gender Equality in Japan and the Impact of Womenomics"
featuring Ms. Mitsuko Horiuchi, Visiting Professor, Bunkyo Gakuin University and moderated by Dr. Linda Hasunuma, Assistant Professor of Government, 
Franklin & Marshall College

When
Wednesday April 27, 2016 from 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM EDT
Add to Calendar
Where
Army and Navy Club, Ballroom
901 17th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006
Driving Directions
Register Now!
Please join us for a discussion with Ms. Mitsuko Horiuchi on the current state of gender equality in Japan. In this conversation, Ms. Horiuchi will assess the effectiveness of Abe administration's policies including "Womenomics" policies that are designed to bring more women into the workforce, and how they are affecting the role of women in Japan today. 
*Lunch will be provided. Seating will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

*Please note that the VENUE is different from previous Speaker Series events.

About the Speaker
Ms. Horiuchi currently holds the posts of the President of Kitakushu Forum on Asian Women and Chairperson of Stop Child Labour Network of Japan. She additionally holds other posts of advisers /directorships at a number of public sectors and nonprofit organizations, including chairperson of the Gender Equality Council in Bunkyo city, where she lives. She formerly has held positions as Director of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Office in Japan as well as the ILO Special Regional Advisor on Gender Issues, ILO Assistant Director-General for Asia and the Pacific, Minister of the Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations, and Cabinet Counselor and Director in the Prime Minister's Office's Office for Women's Affairs. She has published numerous books and monographs on gender and labour issues. Her most recent work is Towards the Elimination of Child Labour: What We Can Do? which she coauthored and published in 2013 by the Institute of Developing Economies of the Japan External Trade Organization. A monograph on Significance of the UN Beijing World Conference on Women, and Progress and Challenges 20 Years after Beijingwill be published in the Journal of Asian Women's Studies by KFAW in March 2016.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Connecting Okinawa and the US: The Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C.

One of the members (Ms. Cacaji Utu) of the うちなあぐち勉強会 (Okinawan Language study group), which meets regularly here at AU, published the following article about the "Okinawan Cherry Blossom Festival" held at George Washington University in DC from March 18th until the 20th in the Okinawa Times:

沖縄とアメリカを結ぶ ワシントンで桜祭り

空手のデモンストレーションを見る部屋いっぱいの見学者=ジョージ・ワシントン大学テキスタイル博物館
 【ウトゥ・カカジ通信員】「オキナワ・チェリーブラッサム・フェスティバル(沖縄桜祭り)」と題したイベントが3月18日から3日間、米首都のジョージ・ワシントン大学テキスタイル博物館で行われた。沖縄県と同博物館による同イベントは今年で2回目。日本の桜が有名なワシントンで、「沖縄の桜」は珍しさもあったのか、来館者は総計1200人を超える大盛況となった。
 小舞台では首里高校染色デザイン科生の紅型作品が幕として使用され、恩納桃枝さん(玉城流師範・ヴァージニア州在)による琉球舞踊「かせかけ」やネスター・フォルタさん(上地流空手道7段教士)と生徒による空手エイサーなどが披露された。紅型ワークショップは順番待ち客が出るほどの人気ぶり。また魚釣りゲーム、紅型の折り紙体験や昔話絵本コーナーなどが設けられ、家族連れでにぎわった。
 神奈川出身の妻と4歳の息子と訪れたヴィンセンティ・ファーガソンさんは「沖縄のことは知ってはいたが、日本との関係や歴史などはよく知らなかった。このイベントで理解を深めることができて良かった。来年もぜひ来たい」と話した。
 紅型折り紙を楽しんでいた新垣由美子さん(久米島出身)と大城宜成さん(宜野湾市普天間出身)は「ニューヨークの地元紙にあった小さな広告を見つけ、4時間半運転して来た」「渡米生活が長いので、故郷のイベントがあると、とてもうれしい」と笑顔。
 ボランティアスタッフとして参加した香スミスさん(那覇市首里出身)は「日本文化とひとくくりにまとめず、沖縄独自の文化をワシントンで発信していくことはとても意義のあることだと思う。沖縄の素晴らしい文化を周知させる手伝いができた事は幸運だと思う」と話していた。

https://www.okinawatimes.co.jp/article.php?id=163060

Monday, April 11, 2016

Japanese Film Screening and Live Music Event in Silver Spring, MD

The American Film Institute (AFI) Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in downtown Silver Spring will celebrate the National Cherry Blossom Festival with this one night only screening of the Japanese film A PAGE OF MADNESS. With live musical accompaniment by NY jazz legend William Hooker, this is an event you will not want to miss.
On Saturday, April 16, see Teinosuke Kinugasa's 1926 landmark of avant-garde cinema, which uses freewheeling montage, double-exposed images and famously refusing to use any intertitles to convey its moody, impressionistic tale of love and madness. A sailor takes a job in the asylum where his wife has been committed after she drowned their son, in the hope of rescuing her. Teinosuke co-authored the script with, among others, future Nobel Prize-winning author Yasunari Kawabata (“Snow Country").

The exclusive screening will take place at AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in downtown Silver Spring on April 16. Tickets are $13 (with special rates for children and seniors), and can be purchased either online here, or in-person at the AFI Silver box office.

Feel free to contact Tiffany Graham-Golden at tgraham@afi.com with any further questions. We’ll see you this April - don’t miss the chance to celebrate a piece of Japanese history on the big screen.

What's wrong with deflation?

By Jerald Schiff, Ph.D.

In Japan, the overall price level in the economy has declined steadily since the bursting of a massive real estate and stock market bubble in 1991. That means that a college student in Japan today has never experienced a time of rising prices.

Why is that a problem? After all, many of us complain about rising prices, so falling prices should be welcome, right? Well, there a couple of problems with this view. First, wages are also prices of a sort--the price of labor. And with deflation, wages also tend to fall. Second, when expectations of falling prices become entrenched in people's minds, that can lead an economy into a deep hole, from which it can be difficult to emerge. Consumers, expecting prices to fall, will hold off on buying things. And businesses, seeing this declining demand--and expecting prices to fall further--will put off investing in new machinery and equipment or hiring new workers. This is precisely what we've seen in Japan for two-plus decades, a period often referred to as the country's "Lost Decades."

Since 2013, the Abe administration has sought to reverse this process, by raising inflation into positive territory and increasing demand within the country, turning a vicious circle into a virtuous one. But, despite some early success, this has proved quite difficult, in part because changing people's mindsets is hard. Despite an extremely stimulative monetary policy put in place by the Bank of Japan, inflation remains close to zero. Businesses have been reluctant to raise their prices, knowing that consumers have become extremely price sensitive over the decades of deflation. And when prices have risen, these same businesses have resisted wage increases or new investment, in part reflecting fears that any gains will be temporary.

The attached video provides a really interesting example of this problem. In mid-March, a Japanese ice cream company, Akagi Gyunu (famous for its unusual favors, such as spaghetti and potato stew!) announced its first price rise in 25 years--a hike of less than 10 cents. The increase was accompanied by this heart-felt apology video to its many customers. While many of us might wish that companies here would take a similarly socially-oriented approach, the video can also be viewed in a much less positive light--as a reflection of the challenges Japan still faces in exiting deflation and its Lost Decades.

(Jerald Schiff, Ph.D. was previously Deputy Director of the Asia and Pacific Department at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and was Mission Chief for Japan. He currently teaches at American University in the SIS.)

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Washington DC Japanese-English Toastmasters 日本語・英語トーストマスターズグループ

Japanese-English Toastmasters!!
If you are interested in developing your public speaking skills in Japanese or English, please check out the Japanese English Toastmasters club!
Our club is part of Toastmasters International, a non-profit educational organization aimed at improving its members’ public speaking and leadership skills.
Benefits:
- Practice your public speaking skills in Japanese and English in an informal, friendly environment
- Develop your leadership skills
- Expand your contacts within the Japan-related community
- Enhance your resume
Prerequisites:
- Desire to improve your public speaking and leadership skills
- Beginning or better English/Japanese proficiency
Upcoming Events:
Regular meetings, 2nd and 4th Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. 
Tuesday, April 12:  1401 H Street NW, Washington, 1st floor conference room (Near McPherson Square Metro)
Tuesday, April 26:  Japan-America Society of Washington, 1819 L Street, Washington, Level B2 (Near Farragut West and Farragut North Metro)
Open house and demonstration meeting:
Tuesday, May 10:  Location to be determined and posted on our website
Guests are always welcome.  No pressure to speak or join!
For more information, see our website (http://jetoastmasters.toastmastersclubs.org/), or contact Mikiko Takahashi-Korn at mickeyinny1@gmail.com or James Reeves at jamesbachreeves@gmail.com, 301-741-0658.
日本語・英語トーストマスターズグループ 
「大勢の前で堂々と話せるようになりたい!」 「自信を持って、英語でコミュニケーションできるようになりたい! もしそのような目標がありましたら、「日本語・英語トーストマスターズグループに参加してみませんか。
当クラブでは、会員同士のフィードバックを軸に、日本語および英語でのスピーチを練習することで、 コミュニケーションスキルの向上を図ることができます。
まずは見学してみませんか?見学には参加無料です。.
活動から得られること
・サポーティブな雰囲気の中、日本語、英語でのスピーチを練習
・リーダーシップや指導力の向上
・コミュニケーション力の向上
・日米関係コミュニティーに関わり、ネットワークを広げる
・履歴書に書ける
参加にあたって必要なこと
・スピーチ、リーダーシップを向上したいという意欲
・初級~上級レベルの英語・日本語能力
スケジュール
定例会:第二、第四火曜日
時間18:30~20:00
活動場所:ノーザンバージニアおよびワシントンDC
4月、5月のスケジュール
定例会日&場所:412日 1401 H Street NW, Washington, 1st floor conference room
                                4
26日 Japan-America Society, 1819 L Street, Washington, B2
オープンハウス:510日 会場未定
参加希望のメールは大歓迎です。お気軽にお問い合わせください!Mikiko Takahashi-Korn (mickeyinny1@gmail.com) もしくはJames Reeves (jamesbachreeves@gmail.com, 301-741-0658)まで

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Kito Webinar

This was received from Lighthouse Global Inc:

We are happy to announce that we are hosting KITO CORPORATION, a Japanese major Hoist & Crane manufacturer Webinar on Sunday, May 15th 2016!
*Pre-registration must be required!
—— What are good about KITO CORPORATION? ——
~ Needed are Kito’s products, as long as gravity is there ~ The slogan refer to “Hoist” & “Crane”, which lift up, move and stabilize the material. KITO CORPORATION is a global machinery manufacturer, that manufactures them on their own and sells them not only in Japan but worldwide.
- acquired No.1 market share both in Japanese and the U.S. market.
- A leading company, being listed with first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange
- The company has both stability and growth as it keeps challenging the new fields such as theaters and wind electricity, etc while sustaining society's infrastructure.
- Some seniors have already worked for overseas business only a year after joining the company! So there is a field that you can play a active role overseas or by using English at its early stage!
Company’s website: http://www.kito.co.jp/
Learn more about the Webinar: http://lighthouse-gl.com/pdf/kito2016
— Webinar details —
*LIVE Streaming               *About an hour-long Webinar              *It will be spoken only in Japanese.
[Time and date] US East Coast (EST): Sunday, May 15th | 9:00 p.m. -
[How to join the Webinar?] http://lighthouse-gl.com/entryform/kito2016/
*We will send you a link to watch the Webinar after your registration.
[Contents]
-About manufacturing industry/Company Information session (about KITO)
-Career Information provided by seniors who graduated from Universities overseas.
-Upcoming Summer/Fall Screening Sessions schedule (for juniors and seniors)
-Summer Internship Information
-Qs and As Session in a live chat
 [Eligibility]

Students who are enrolled in Universities in the US/Canada and are required to have at least a business Japanese proficiency level.
-The Webinar (and the summer internship program above) is open to all majors and school years.
-All types of study-abroad students are welcomed! (Exchange/a short or long period of study abroad programs)

Monday, April 4, 2016

Recently spotted...

This was recently spotted at the K-mart in Gaithersburg, MD. Who in this area can actually read this and who is the target market?

What are your thoughts?

Alumni page renamed

Please note that the alumni page is now the "せんぱい and こうはい" page. This is a place for past and present AU Japanese students to get to know each other. Please add your info and meet new (and old) people in the Program!

Undergraduate 2016-2017 Academic Year Scholarship

A message from the Office of the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences:

We invite all College of Arts & Sciences majors to submit a proposal for the Undergraduate Academic Year Scholarship. Awards are given during the academic year and may begin at the start of fall or spring semesters. The scholarship supports scholarly and artistic endeavors during the academic year that are outside of AU credit hours; students may not receive independent study, independent reading, or internship credit for their projects. However the scholarly activity might become part of a senior capstone project.

The primary goal of the scholarship is to provide students with the opportunity to cultivate skills by working collaboratively with faculty on a scholarly or creative project. Each scholarship carries an award of $1,500 per semester for up to two consecutive semesters and up to $500 for research related expenses (e.g., materials, transportation, field work).

• Applicants must have a primary CAS major with a minimum major GPA of 3.3 and a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.
• Awardees must be enrolled as full-time undergraduate students at American University during the period of the award.
• Preference will be given to students with demonstrated economic need as determined by the Financial Aid Office. Students do not provide this documentation.

• All applications must include:
o a cover page with the name of the project, the names and email addresses of the student and faculty mentor, and the student’s primary major; if applicable include secondary majors and minors.
o an abstract (300 word maximum) and a short list of key words.
o the proposal itself, limited to 1,000 words (not including references). Describe the project (exactly what you will do), explain the project’s significance in terms of your field, and provide information regarding the academic or artistic training that will enable you to undertake this proposed activity.
o a timeline for completion.
o a letter of support from the intended faculty mentor.

• Awardees are required to file a final report, co-signed by their faculty sponsor, within 30 days of completing their scholarly or creative activity.

The scholarship is competitive. The College will make up to 12 awards distributed across the Clusters: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences and Natural Sciences. The application review committee will be composed of the CAS Associate Dean of Research, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies, the CAS Research Committee and possibly faculty representatives drawn from the academic units.

Award winners will be expected to publicly present their completed work. For instance, they might present, display or perform their work at a conference at AU or at an event off campus. They also may be asked to speak to prospective students during Preview Days about their scholarship. Awards are made for the academic year (August 2016 – April 2017). All work should be completed by and all funding must be expended by April 30, 2017.

Applications should be submitted to the Associate Dean of Research of the College of Arts and Sciences at casresearch@american.edu by May 1, 2016.

Please let the Japanese Language Program Coordinator (Ken Knight, Ph.D.) know if you are interested in pursuing something Japanese-related.

Maritime Awareness Project talk

Some of you might be interested in this event happening Thursday, April 14th:



The National Bureau of Asian Research and Sasakawa USA
You are cordially invited to join us for
NAVIGATING UNSETTLED WATERS
Introducing the Maritime Awareness Project (MAP)
Featuring a keynote address by

Vice Admiral Robert L. Thomas, Jr.
Director, Navy Staff, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations
Thursday, April 14, 2016 | 1:00-5:00 p.m.
Reception to follow

Navy Memorial and Heritage Center
701 Pennsylvania Ave NW | Washington, D.C. 20004
If you wish to attend, please RSVP here
The National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR) and Sasakawa USA invite you to join us for the launch of the Maritime Awareness Project (MAP), a new joint initiative to assist policymakers, the press, and interested public in better understanding critical maritime problems and possible routes to their peaceful resolution. MAP features a unique, interactive website encompassing key data at the heart of ongoing maritime disputes as well as related maritime issues. In addition, a group of the world's top experts on maritime affairs serve as contributors to an ongoing series of analytical papers, online discussions, and MAP seminars and conferences.

This event will feature a timely, high-level discussion on competing sovereignty claims in the South China Sea as well as on broader security concerns in the maritime domain. Leading maritime experts will discuss the complex economic, political, and military stakes affected by the South China Sea disputes. They will examine how the dispute will have implications across the maritime domain and offer suggestions on possible ways to mitigate tensions and move toward resolution.

SPEAKERS

Rommel Banlaoi 
Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research

Dennis Blair 
Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA

Ja Ian Chong 
National University of Singapore

Richard J. Ellings 
The National Bureau of Asian Research

M. Taylor Fravel 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Mikkal Herberg 
The National Bureau of Asian Research

Jeffrey Hornung 
Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA

Nong Hong 
Institute for China-America Studies

Karolos J. Karnikis 
The National Bureau of Asian Research

Tiffany Ma 
The National Bureau of Asian Research

Shafiah F. Muhibat 
Centre for Strategic and International Studies, Indonesia

Tabitha Mallory 
The National Bureau of Asian Research

Justin Nankivell 
Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies

Sumathy Permal 
Maritime Institute of Malaysia

Ian J. Storey 
ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute
 
The disputed waters of the South China Sea are a vital artery for regional trade. Long a fishing ground for seafarers along its rim and containing fields of hydrocarbon reserves, the sea is also an important resource base for claimant states. Resolution of competing claims and agreement on acceptable activities in surrounding exclusive economic zones remains elusive. Broader competition among regional powers and modernization of regional countries' navies and coast guard capabilities put additional stress on an already volatile situation. The United States has made clear its interest in maintaining freedom of navigation throughout the world, and finds itself increasingly under pressure by other states—especially those with interests in the South China Sea—to uphold that commitment.
AGENDA
1:00-1:45 p.m. | INTRODUCTION

1:45-3:00 p.m. | PANEL
Understanding the Complexities of the South China Sea Dispute

3:15-4:30 p.m. | PANEL
Traditional and Nontraditional Security Concerns in the Maritime Domain

4:30-4:45 p.m. | KEYNOTE ADDRESS

4:45-5:00 p.m. | CONCLUSION

5:00-6:30 p.m. | RECEPTION

If you wish to attend, please RSVP here.

For media inquiries, please contact: Mr. Xiaodon Liang atxliang@nbr.org or (202) 347-9767.


CONGRATULATIONS to CLS winner AGNES SAGINA!

Agnes Sagina has won the Critical Language Scholarship for a study abroad in Japan this summer! サギナさん、おめでとうございます!

サギナさん tells us about the CLS and her experiences thus far:

"CLS is the Critical Language Scholarship program and it is open for basically anyone to apply as long as they are a college student or they plan on doing the program the summer right after they graduate. There are two programs open; the intermediate (2 years of study) and advanced classes (3 years of study). The location varies year by year, but for Summer 2016 the session will be taking place in Hikone, Japan. The biggest perk obviously is that it is all completely paid for! The program is funded by the Dept of State and the expenses cover travel, visa fees, transportation to get to DC for the orientation and a monthly stipend (not sure how much and it's for food I believe). You stay with a homestay family and it is an intensive learning program. There is roughly 4-6 hours of schooling 5 times a week with about 3 hours of homework given, weekend cultural excursions and no English speaking is allowed. It is a program seeking diversity but more so they are looking for a commitment to continue learning the language. A pre- and post-interview is given to assess your starting and ending level. The application is kind of time consuming but that's mostly due to the essays. The essays are short with roughly 300 words max but they ask a variety of questions from how you handle being in a new environment and interacting with new people, to what you can contribute to the class group. It is highly competitive and all areas of your application need to be strong, especially reference letters. It is good to get a letter from someone who will write an absolutely glowing review of you.

Obviously I have yet to complete the program but I am really excited about it. It is a great opportunity, especially since I can study abroad without having to front the cost. I really do believe my speaking skills are going to improve. It is a great program and I really encourage everyone and anyone to apply and apply again. Like I said, they accept you even the summer after you graduate. And if you do get accepted, you're even eligible to apply the next year to complete the next level. I look forward to writing a post review, but applying is free so you really have nothing to lose and if selected, a whole bunch to gain!

A great video to watch is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYUY8m2L-3I&feature=youtu.be

I hope this helps!"


Friday, April 1, 2016

Panel Discussion on the Untold History of the Vietnam War (Organized by our Japanese student Adina Maier!)

**This is an event being held by one of our Japanese students. Please support her and Asian studies in general by attending.**

Join us on Wednesday, April 13th from 8-9:30PM in American University's Wechsler Theater (MGC 315) for a panel discussion on the untold history of the Vietnam War. Our panelists will discuss a wide range of topics in the Vietnam Conflict, including the lesser-known aspects of the war and the many challenges the Vietnamese still face to this day as a result of the fighting. Here is a link to the Facebook event page. 

The panel will be moderated by Professor Max Paul Friedman (SIS & CAS Dept. of History) and will feature:

Professor Peter Kuznick - Mr. Kuznick is a professor of History and Director of the Nuclear Studies Institute at American University.http://www.american.edu/cas/faculty/kuznick.cfm

Professor William Belding - Mr. Belding is a co-founder of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, winner of the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize. He was the president of Vietnam Veterans of America from 2004-2007.http://www.american.edu/sis/faculty/belding.cfm

Channapha Khamvongsa - Ms. Khamvongsa is the Executive Director of Legacies of War, an organization that seeks to address the problem of unexploded cluster bombs in Laos. https://www.facebook.com/legaciesofwar/

John Diamond - Mr. Diamond is a senior consultant at the World Bank. He is an experienced writer, author, journalist, and media relations strategist with extensive knowledge on U.S. history, defense, foreign policy, and global environmental policy.

The event is free and open to the public. We ask that you consider donating to our partner organizations through our fundraiser https://www.gofundme.com/75twe54c or by donating at the panel discussion. We will have donation jars set up.

Please also consider liking us on Facebook to learn more about our organization and to stay up to speed on other events we are planning. https://www.facebook.com/GhostsofWarVN

Best,
Adena Maier
Arts & Entertainment Editor, The Eagle
Student at American University

Cherry Blossom Festival discussion on US films about Japan

Evolution of American Perceptions on Japan:
Through Films
Celebrating over 70 years of friendship between Japan and the United States

When
Wednesday April 6, 2016 from 11:30 AM to 2:30 PM EDT
Add to Calendar

Where
The Mayflower Hotel, East Room
1127 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20036
Driving Directions
Contact
Sora Choi
Program Assistant
Sasakawa USA
schoi@spfusa.org
(202)296-6694 ext. 103


As an official program of the National Cherry Blossom Festival, Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA invites you to celebrate more than 70 years of friendship between the United States and Japan with a clip reel viewing, panel discussion and audience Q&A looking at films that portray Japan and Japanese people. 

The event will feature a clip reel screening of American movies about Japan ranging from the faraway and mysterious Japan of 100 years ago through the wartime enemy to the strong ally of today. An esteemed panel of film critics and Japan experts will then discuss the progression of U.S.-Japan relations over the years through these films.

Lunch will be served. Seating will be allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis.

11:30-11:50 PM  Registration & Lunch

11:50-12:00 PM  Welcome Remarks
  • Admiral Dennis C. Blair (USN, ret.), Chairman and CEO, Sasakawa USA 
12:00-13:00 PM  Keynote Speech
  • Masanori "Mashi" Murakami, Former Major League Baseball Player for the San Francisco Giants (first Japanese player to play for MLB)
13:00-14:15 PM  Clip Reel Viewing & Panel Discussion


Moderator 
  • Frederick H. Katayama, Anchor and Producer, Reuters 
Panelists 
  • Jeffrey Lyons, Emmy Award-Winning Movie Critic 
  • Yoko Narahashi, Casting Director and Producer for The Last SamuraiMemoirs of a Geisha and Emperor 
  • Dr. Sheila Smith, Senior Fellow for Japan Studies, Council on Foreign Relations
14:15-14:30 PM  Audience Q&A

Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA, 1819 L Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20036