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MIT-Japan activities over IAP

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MIT-Japan 2015 students
MIT-Japan 2015 students
Photo: MIT-Japan Program

This year the MIT-Japan Program — one of 19 country programs within the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI) — is hosting a series of Japan-related events over MIT’s Independent Activities Period (IAP).

In addition to its courses, the program is hosting a nine-day trip to Japan over IAP through the Japanese Government’s Kakehashi Project. The project is geared toward students who have never visited Japan or who are beginning-level Japanese students. The Kakehashi Project’s goal is to build cooperation with MIT students and Japan by providing participants with a better understanding of Japan by visiting number of historical and educational sites, experiencing traditional and cultural activities, and participating in lectures and workshops. Subsidized by the Govenment of Japan, this program is open to people who are U.S. citizens or holders of U.S. permanent resident cards.

MIT-Japan events

KYUDO: Japanese Archery
Jan. 9 at 10 a.m. and Jan. 10 at 9 a.m.
Location: MAC Court
Speakers: Joyce Wu, Jim Boorstein, and Sam Kanner

"Kyudo" means the "way of the bow" and was considered the highest discipline of ancient Japanese samurai. It is based on standing Zen meditation used by Zen Buddhist monks as a means of cultivating self-awareness. Beginners will receive instruction in the basic form of kyudo, the Seven Coordinations or "shichi-do," and shoot at a short-range target.

Chirimen Zaiku: The Art of Japanese silk crepe craft
Jan. 14 at 1 p.m.
Location: E40-464
Speakers: Mineko Sasaki

Mineko Sasaki, an accomplished instructor of Chirimen-zaiku, will assist students in creating their own crepe craft to take home.

Ikebana: the Art of Japanese Flower Arrangement
Jan. 28 at 2 p.m.
Location: E40-464
Speakers: Hiroko Matsuyama

Hiroko Matsuyama, an accomplished instructor of the Ohara school of Ikebana, will show students the basics of this ancient art as they create their own flower arrangements.

Note that all events currently have a waitlist. Please contact with any questions.

This past summer MIT-Japan sent over 30 undergrad and graduate students to the island nation to intern and research in various MIT fields. Student projects included developing a prototype application that allows passengers to compare the crowding of train cars at host company Mitsubishi Electric; investigating, designing, and implementing methods for automatically extracting information from text documents at Fujitsu Laboratories in Kawasaki; and analyzing data from peripheral artery disease (PAD) patients taken before and after rehabilitation at the University of Tokyo.

Like many MISTI programs, MIT-Japan also offers a fund — the Hayashi Seed Fund — for MIT faculty collaborating with peers in Japan. In 2014, three faculty projects were awarded approximately $30,000 each. Since 2008, the program has awarded over $500,000 to 22 projects in Japan.

MIT-Japan and MISTI are a part of the School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (MIT-SHASS).

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