Cultivating a bold spirit of taking on challenges and creating new value.
Becoming more active as a university that provides a solid foundation for research and education.
Kyoto Sangyo University is making important changes ahead of its 50th anniversary in 2015. The Grand Design for the university involves systematic, qualitative reforms that will build a strong foundation for many kinds of research. We also aim to boost research capabilities with a view toward the future and develop a curriculum that offers studies of a more practical nature.
The driving force behind this renewal is the school’s own tradition of taking on challenges. In 1965 when KSU was established, there was a societal bias against pure academicism in the weighting of university education, industry, and society. Establishing the university itself was a major challenge in the face of such headwinds. Yet, our founder, Prof. Toschima Araki, and the educators and students who followed his lead overcame all difficulties, and KSU has continued to produce graduates who successfully apply their talents both at home and on the international stage.
As a university that has known many challenges, I firmly believe that the individuals who graduate from our halls have learned to embody the mentality to overcome all obstacles.
Education inspires innovation—the right mix of capabilities to bring new things into the world.
Nevertheless, we are answerable to the question posed by Prof. Sakai, of “Can we breathe our soul into the bud of a flower to make it bloom to its fullest?” For this reason, regarding the current state of the university, an outlook which focuses on the next half century is necessary and broader and deeper investigation into current education and research is required. Yet, at this stage without touching on individual fundamental policies of wide ranging education and research, I would like to complete as soon as possible, reinvestigation, coordination, human and material maintenance of the many policies and systems, and while ascertaining on and off campus trends, intend to present new policies.
Kyoto Sangyo University is the name of our school in English. We chose not to translate Sangyo in the standard way as “Industrial” and the reason for this is as follows. The founding principle of the school emphasizes that as an educational institution we must serve the world by producing individuals who have the right mix of capabilities to bring new things into the world, which is the mandate of industry. Part of that “right mix” means being able to make the necessary connections—between people, ideas, and objects—to link disparate elements and thereby create new value where none had existed before. That mix of capabilities leads directly to innovation—which then equates to sangyo. The university’s main purpose is thus to provide the kind of education that inspires innovation.
For example, in 2012 we established the Honeybee Sangyo Research Center in conjunction with commercial enterprises to conduct practical research activities in an area that has not previously been explored. The unique facet of this center is that its focus will not be limited to commercial applications but will extend to additional research areas with high potential, such as the use of honeybees in environmental conservation and local area development.
Focusing on the process of learning—from academic study to real-world experience and the further deepening of knowledge.
More than ten years ago, well before other universities, Kyoto Sangyo University began devoting resources to career education for students. Such training is intended not merely to provide the skills needed to get hired by a company, but emphasizes a process whereby students grow and develop by encountering new areas of study and receiving guidance to figure out the best place for themselves in the real world. Currently, approximately 2,800 students, primarily in their first or second year, participate in a program designed to support career development, which includes internships and guest lectures by people from the business community. We also offer the Sagittarius Challenge program, which includes a speech and essay contest section and a “good try” section that presents awards for unique attempts that have been based on a great idea but nonetheless failed—annual events that draw a great deal of attention. The principle is that a failure always leads to the next challenge, so the award encourages young people to find ways to overcome failures and take on new challenges.
KSU graduates demonstrate a capacity to thrive in the real world. Those who go on to work internationally have also garnered an excellent reputation. The university provides a unique education that educates individuals in the true senses of becoming knowledgeable and cultured, in the process meeting our mandate of serving society.
Contributing to society in the best way possible through a wide range of educational and research activities.
Serving society is an important function of all universities. Since our founding we have served as a united bridge between society and industry, but our role was put into further perspective in 2011 by the Great East Japan Earthquake.
When young people went to the stricken areas as volunteers and came back with a personal understanding of what they needed to study based on personal experience, a strong need manifested that the university would be required to fulfill. We must now establish a solid foundation for research and encourage truly useful areas of academic study. We need to build a system that offers specific, real-world integration. KSU is now pursuing a wide range of educational and research themes—solutions to global issues, leading-edge research topics, regional vitalization, and lifelong learning—based on which we can make a direct and substantial contribution toward the betterment of the world.
As we approach our 50th anniversary, our dreams turn to the next 50 years stretching out ahead. Our goal is to be a foremost world-standard university that vigorously engages in the development of research fields and produces graduates educated with the tools to take on the challenges of the 21st century.