Vice-Chancellor of the University of the Free State in South Africa pays courtesy call to Meiji University
On February 13, 2012 the Vice-Chancellor of the University of the Free State in South Africa, Prof. Jonathan D. Jansen, together with Prof. Stroebel from the same university and director of the International Academic Projects, Cecil Masoka, Minister Counsellor in charge of Science and Technology at the Embassy of the Republic of South Africa in Japan, and others, paid a courtesy call to the Surugadai Campus of Meiji University.
From Meiji University, University President Hiromi Naya, Vice President Etsuko Katsu, Michihiko Kojima, a full-time lecturer in the School of Agriculture, and others hosted the visitors, and held an exchange of opinions about the educational initiatives of the two universities going forward and possible exchanges and agreements between them.
The University of the Free State was founded 103 years ago, and has 30,000 students and nine academic divisions, etc., so it is about the same size as Meiji University. Exchanges between the two universities began when Director Stroebel from the University of the Free State visited Meiji University in October 2011 in order to hold exchanges with researchers in the field of water resources, and lecturer Michihiko Kojima in the School of Agriculture showed the director around the laboratories on the Ikuta Campus.
Vice-Chancellor Jansen said “it is a great privilege to have this opportunity to visit your university because our two universities have much in common and we can learn a lot from you. Going forward, I want to collaborate with Meiji University in order to raise the overall academic ability of our university and improve research standards.” University President Naya spoke about his expectations for future exchanges between the two universities, saying “partnerships with universities in South Africa, which will become a leading nation in the international community, is important. Both Meiji University and the University of the Free State feel there is a need to focus our efforts on the development of individuals who will be active internationally going forward.”
Vice-Chancellor Jansen asked “what are the strengths of Meiji University compared to other universities?” University President Naya responded by expressing a strong hope for a partnership between the two universities going forward, saying “Our main campus is in the center of Tokyo. There are business streets and government offices nearby and many internationally active people also come to the university so the students can directly experience the development of Japan within the world. We already have partnership agreements with 166 universities and have developed systems for visiting researchers and scholarship programs for exchange students, so we would strongly welcome a student exchange program with the University of the Free State.”