Message from the President
A University Developing Innovative Individuals Who Will take on the Future of Asia
I am Oshima Masakatsu, successor to Michiharu Kurita as new University President on October 1, 2018. I welcome your cooperation and support. Under President Kurita, I served as Vice President for three years. At the end of the 2015 academic year, President Kurita set out a ten-year plan for Asia University, the Asia Future Roadmap 2025, and has carried out a medium-term action plan for the first three years of the roadmap. When I assumed office on October 1, I announced the second three-year action plan aimed at continuing on the way toward achieving the Asia Future Roadmap 2025. For the next three years, I will be devoting a full effort to the successful implementation of this second action plan. To ensure a smooth start from October 1, President Kurita and I spent day after day in August and September studying and drawing up the second action plan along with the budget plan for the 2019 academic year. Before this time, it was customary to start drafting the three-year plan when the new University President took office. Rewriting the plans each time a new University President is appointed is not always in the interests of consistent university administration. Moreover, while a new plan is being drafted, daily operations tend to stall. This time, the passing of the baton from the former to the new President went smoothly, and a consistent start took place without a slowdown in operations.
Toward Successfully Implementing the Second Three-Year Action Plan
The mission of the Asia University ten-year plan, Asia Future Roadmap 2025, based on the founding spirit of Self-help and Cooperation, is to develop innovative individuals who will pursue diverse dreams and take on the future of Asia. Given this mission, the plan lays out four visions for the future of Asia University in 2025. These are, “Becoming a center of Asian exchange,” “Increasing individual value,” “Providing lifelong support to students,” and “Contributing to society.” The second three-year action plan has now started based on this mission and four-part vision.
By the year 2031, the population of 18-year-olds in Japan is expected to fall below one million. The preparations for dealing with such a 2031 structure must be made starting now. Society’s need for people who are comfortable with globalization is today greater than ever. Beginning with the 2020 academic year, a new entrance exam system designed for the next 30 to 40 years will go into effect, replacing the previous systems that will have been in use for four decades. These previous systems comprised the Joint First-stage Achievement Test, which started in 1970, and the National Center Test for University Admissions. Based on a recognition of the above situation, the main focus of the second three-year action plan is on the following three points.
1. Further promoting global human resources development
2. Visually showing learning accomplishments at “Asia University for Education”
3. Establishing a framework enabling new faculty creation and reorganization in the 2023 academic year
Main Action Measures for Giving Substance to the Vision
The action plan indicates measures to be taken in five areas for steadily and effectively giving substance to the vision, namely, globalization, education and research activities, learning environment and support, collaboration with society, and university administration. Of these measures, particular emphasis will be on the following.
As a globalization measure, an AUAP (Asia University America Program) administration team will be launched, tasked with creating a new AUAP as a more compelling study abroad program.
In the education and research activities area, we will begin studying reorganization of the undergraduate departments aimed at further increasing the individuality and appeal of the University. Along with this, plans for studying graduate school reform will be drawn up by the end of the 2019 academic year. The status of the GPA as an indicator of academic performance will undergo verification, and a support framework will be provided for raising learning effectiveness. Educational effectiveness will be increased by keeping track of the engagement and growth of each individual student and enhancing first-year education, study abroad, and active learning. Junior and senior year seminars will be made mandatory for all faculties.
As learning environment and support measures, a dropout rate below the national average will be achieved. To give students wide recognition for their efforts and successes, awards programs by the University President and faculty deans will be enhanced. Career education will be strongly emphasized, and a University-wide framework will be provided for achieving a career path decision rate of greater than 90 percent. The liaison council with the officers of the alumni association being an important venue for exchange of views, we will promote further reinvigoration of extracurricular activities.
In the area of collaboration with society, support will be given to students of the University who provide instruction or other guidance to area youth in sports and cultural activities, and greater efforts will be made toward improving the physical and mental health of young people and their sports skills, as well as contributing further to area cultural activities. Regarding the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics in particular, we plan to train and register volunteer prospects, with the Asia Self-help and Cooperation Project playing a central role.
Finally, in the area of University administration, we will seek to strengthen governance functions, create a human resources development program for University personnel, and strengthen strategic public relations activities, making every effort to build a stable financial base. In particular, we will establish an environment for proactively communicating the Asia University Brand in and outside the school.
This is my 39th year as part of this University. My field is accounting, including the areas of international accounting, environmental accounting, and managerial accounting. In a broad sense, accounting is a discipline for the sake of smooth development of corporations (including universities) and other organizations. I would be pleased if even my limited knowledge will be of at least some use toward the advancement of Asia University.
I ask for the cooperation of students, graduates, university personnel, parents, and the local community, as we work to achieve the second three-year action plan.
President of Asia University
(Post assumed on October 1st, 2018)