Sasakawa Fellows Reception 2014
At the annual Sasakawa Fellows Reception, hosted by the Ocean Policy Research Foundation (OPRF) on 1 November, the 22 students sponsored in the Class of 2014 were honored as WMU Sasakawa Fellows. The new Fellows come from 16 different countries: Algeria, Bangladesh, Colombia, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Liberia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Viet Nam. The total number of WMU Sasakawa Fellows is now 543.
Mr Eisuke Kudo, Special Advisor of the OPRF, welcomed the guests including Mr. Koji Sekimizu, WMU Chancellor and Secretary-General of the IMO, Professor Neil Bellefontaine, Acting WMU President, Mr. Mitsuyuki Unno, Executive Director of the Nippon Foundation, and Mr Leif Almö, Honorary Consul of Japan. The gathering also included dignitaries from IMO, University Governors, WMU faculty and staff, family members of the Fellows, Sasakawa Fellowship Students in the Class of 2015, and guests who would receive honorary awards at the graduation ceremony on 2 November.
Mr. Unno addressed the graduating students, congratulating them on the completion of their studies and welcoming them to the “family” of Sasakawa Fellows. He delighted the company by saying “Congratulations” in all 16 languages spoken in the students’ home countries. The certificates were then presented individually to each graduating student. Upon receiving the honor of Fellow, each recipient also became a member of the Friends of WMU, Japan.
The Class of 2014 Fellows have now officially joined the global network of individuals whose lives have been changed by accepting their roles as Sasakawa Fellows. “Share the Pain. Share the Hope. Share the Future,” can be found on the Foundation’s website, reflecting their mission of social innovation to achieve a society where people support one another. Their mission for social innovation maintains that, “Everyone has a role to play: citizens, corporations, nonprofit organizations, government, and international bodies. By forging networks among these actors, The Nippon Foundation serves as a hub for the world’s wisdom, experience, and human resources, giving individuals the capacity to change society - the hope that they can make a difference.”
Second only to WMU’s host country of Sweden, The Nippon Foundation, through OPRF, is the largest donor to the University, providing 22-25 new awards on an annual basis. In addition to the Fellowships that cover all tuition and living expenses, since 1993 The Nippon Foundation has hosted a week-long field study to Japan for Sasakawa Fellowship Students and since 2001 has regularly hosted Sasakawa Fellow gatherings.
Aside from the extraordinary support for students, The Nippon Foundation further supports the capacity building mission of WMU by sponsoring three Professorial Chairs and a Lecturer. In addition, the Foundation provides support for numerous conferences and events connected with WMU.
At the graduation ceremony on 2 November, two Sasakawa Fellows received student awards: Aleik Nurwahyudy from Indonesia received the Lloyd´s Maritime Academy Dissertation Prize, and the C. P. Srivastava Award for International Fellowship, was awarded to Yusuke Mori from Japan.