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Update from Team TOMODACHI
January 2017

High School Students from Fukushima Prefecture Participate in the Iconic American New Year’s Tradition, the Rose Parade, and Share Stories of Fukushima

From December 26, 2016 to January 9, 2017, twenty high school students from Fukushima prefecture participated in the TOMODACHI Honda Cultural Exchange Program 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

Generously funded by Honda Motor Co., Ltd., this two-week long cultural exchange program began in 2015 to provide opportunities to Tohoku high school students who suffered from the Great East Japan Earthquake.

During the program, the students experienced American tradition and culture through exchanges with local students and the U.S. military, participated in volunteer activities and had a homestay opportunity. As the highlight of the program, the students participated in the historic Rose Parade sponsored by American Honda Motor Co., and performed an original musical piece with Grammy award winning musician Daniel Ho, during the iconic American New Year’s tradition. In addition, the high school students decorated the float exhibited by American Honda for the Rose parade. The float was created with designs that incorporated the phoenix and Japanese crane, integrating American and Japanese cultural concepts with “peace” as the underlying theme.

Furthermore, the students participated in the friendship concert held at the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center in downtown Los Angeles. During the performance, the students shared stories of Fukushima and their dreams while on stage and received an overwhelming standing ovation. Their heartfelt performance showcased the friendship, strength and hope of Fukushima. Read More>>
The Latest on TOMODACHI Programs and Activities

Participants Present Their Findings and Lessons Learned from the Year-Long TOMODACHI J&J Disaster Nursing Training Program

On November 27, the post-trip presentations for the TOMODACHI J&J Disaster Nursing Training Program took place at the International Research Institute of Disaster Science, Tohoku University, where the 12 nursing students presented their findings and lessons learned from the program, as well as their future goals. After the presentations, the participants and the attendees enjoyed networking opportunities.

The TOMODACHI J&J Disaster Nursing Training Program, planned and conducted through a special partnership with the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies in Japan, is designed to build institutional knowledge and capacity in the medical field in the Tohoku region by focusing on the field of disaster nursing. More>>

Recruitment is now open for Japanese nursing students in Tohoku for the TOMODACHI J&J Disaster Nursing Training Program 2017. For more information, click here

Female High School Students in Fukushima Discover the Importance of Challenge through a Session with Professional Female Leaders

From December 17 to 18, the third phase of the TOMODACHI High School Women Career Mentoring Program in Fukushima 2016 took place in Yoyogi, Tokyo. This year, the participating high school students interacted with 23 professional women represented by TOMODACHI partners and donors, including All Nippon Airways Co., Ltd., Dow Chemical Japan Limited, Kikkoman Corporation, Lawson, Inc., Northrop Grumman Japan, Pasona Inc., and the Government of Japan’s Reconstruction Agency.  

The students listened to the choices that the professional women made in their lives, as well as the roles their companies and organizations play in society, what they have learned through being in the workforce, and their life stories. More>>

2016 TOMODACHI Sumitomo Scholars Visit Washington, D.C. and New York City and Meet with Influential U.S.-Japan Leaders

Five of the TOMODACHI Sumitomo Scholars visited Washington, D.C. and New York City for a winter leadership program hosted by Sumitomo Corporation of Americas from January 7-13, 2017.

On January 11 while they were in Washington, D.C., they met with U.S.-Japan Council (USJC) President Irene Hirano Inouye and discussed the future of U.S.-Japan relations, the relevance of Japan in the minds of Americans, and how Japanese Americans reconcile their identity with what happened during World War II. That evening, USJC hosted a networking dinner for the students, introducing them to a variety of U.S.-Japan professionals.

The students also visited New York City, which is the headquarters for Sumitomo Corporation of Americas, as part of the leadership program. They stayed with host families, visited the 9/11 Museum, joined in a discussion at Columbia University and learned about Sumitomo Corporation's operations in the United States and around the world. The program concluded with a celebration dinner in New York City. More>>

Participants of the TOMODACHI Disability Leadership Program Complete Their Training in Boston

From July 29 to December 20, three stellar young Japanese woman with disabilities participated in the TOMODACHI Disability Leadership Program in America. This five-month-long program engaged the trainees in a spectrum of activities, including an intensive orientation to the program and life in Boston, an individualized internship with a disability-focused government or community organization, weekly group seminars, and English language training.

Inspired by a disability-related issue, each trainee presented their independent project that they investigated in their internships at a special award ceremony on December 13. The three projects included how students with disabilities in the United States access college and how they advocate for themselves, making public transportation systems accessible to people with disabilities, and the practical application of universal design to make public physical spaces accessible to all. This program is generously supported by Northrop Grumman and implemented by the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) at UMass Boston. More>>
Upcoming Programs and Events
Feb 15 - 22

Feb 15 - 22

Feb 22 - Mar 1

Feb 24

Mar 1 - 8

Mar 1 - 8

Mar 3

Mar 5 - 10

Mar 9

Mar 9 - 12

Mar 13 - 21

Mar 13 - 21

Mar 13 - 21

Mar 18 - 20

Mar 21 - 29

Mar 25 - 31
Students from Showa Women’s University travel to Boston on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars Program

US Embassy-Keio SFC-TOMODACHI Entrepreneurship Seminar Winners visit Silicon Valley in California 

Fukushima University students travel to Houston on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars

TOMODACHI MetLife Women's Leadership Program Final Sessions in Tokyo and Osaka

Miyagi University of Education travel to Jackson, Mississippi on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars Program

Kyushu University students travel to Hawaii on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars

TOMODACHI MetLife Women's Leadership Program Final Session Okinawa and Sapporo

University Venture Grand Prix Program participants visit Silicon Valley in California

Reception celebrating Partnerships of the TOMODACHI Initiative in fostering next generation leaders at the Cerulean Tower Tokyu Hotel in Tokyo

TOMODACHI Alumni Regional Leaders orientation in Tokyo
University of Massachusetts Boston visit Japan on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars

University of St. Thomas students visit Japan on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars  

Jackson State University students visit Japan on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars

Alumni participate in the TOMODACHI Generation Global Leadership Academy in Miyagi prefecture (Tohoku) 

Mentees on the TOMODACHI MetLife Women’s Leadership Program visit Washington, DC on the U.S. Trip

University of Hawaii at Manoa students visit Japan on the TOMODACHI Kakehashi Inouye Scholars
TOMODACHI Alumni Activities
Alumni Attend WAW! 2016 Events as Youth Voice Strengthens in the Discussion of Women’s Issues in Japan
On December 13-14, TOMODACHI Alumni took part in the World Assembly for Women: WAW! 2016. The conference is one of the efforts of the Abe Administration to achieve a society where “women shine” with leading figures from all over the world attend to lead and take part in various discussions based on women’s issues.

Eight alumni representing six different TOMODACHI programs attended the WAW!2016 events such as the Public Symposium on December 13, the high-level roundtable discussions on December 14, and the MetLife Symposium (an official side event hosted by MetLife) on December 9.

After the events, the eight TOMODACHI alumni who attended the WAW! 2016 talked about their inspirations and the need to take action. Yuka Iwabuchi, alumna of the TOMODACHI Sendai-Dallas Young Ambassadors Program, shared her experiences. “It was my first time to participate in a world conference like WAW, and it was a wonderful experience for me. I was inspired by many powerful women like Yuriko Koike who is the Governor of Tokyo, Fumiko Hayashi who is Mayor of Yokohama, Akie Abe who is the Spouse of the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe. We don’t have to hesitate to take action, we should try various things to change the world as a leader. ” More>>
Ambassador’s Kennedy Invites TOMODACHI Alumni to Holiday Party at Her Residence
On December 18, former U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline B. Kennedy invited TOMODACHI Alumni to a holiday party dedicated to youth and supporting the next generation of leaders within Japan. A total of 18 alumni representing seven different TOMODACHI programs attended the holiday festivities, connected with other youth actively creating change within their communities, and came together to inspire one another as they created connections to better the world together.

This was Ambassador Kennedy’s last youth-oriented holiday party since she left her position as U.S. Ambassador to Japan. More>>
Recruiting for the TOMODACHI Generation Global Leadership Academy
Applications are now open to TOMODACHI alumni from the Tohoku region to apply for the TOMODACHI Generation Global Leadership Academy 2017 that will be held in Tohoku for the first time during March 18-20, 2017.  

A total of 63 high school and university students from Tohoku who participated on a TOMODACHI Program will be selected to participate in a 3-day workshop in which students discuss the future of Tohoku and what the youth can do to contribute to society while learning teamwork and leadership skills. More>>
Save the Date: TOMODACHI Alumni Disaster Resilience Training Program Kobe Workshop
From June 3, this two-day training program will take place in Kobe and aims to build the capacity of TOMODACHI Generation young leaders and provide them with both practical skills and theoretical knowledge in the fields of disaster preparedness, disaster management and Psycho Social Support. It also provides TOMODACHI alumni with the opportunity to interact with other alumni who are interested or involved in disaster relief and Psycho Social Support, building a strong network of young leaders passionate about making an impact. More>>

Applications will open February 28, 2017
Recruitment for TOMODACHI Program Participants
Please forward and share these opportunities with people who may be interested. 
2017-18 Watanabe Study Abroad Scholarship Application Now Open!
Applications are now open for the 2017-2018 Toshizo Watanabe Endowed Scholarship! This scholarship will support Japanese undergraduates studying abroad in the United States and will cover up to the full cost of attendance for a semester or year-long program. A generous endowment gift of $10 million from Mr. Toshizo (Tom) Watanabe makes it possible to award scholarships to students for whom study abroad would not be possible without financial support. Click here for more information on qualifications and how to apply.
Recruiting for the J&J Disaster Nursing Training Program 2017
Recruitment is now open for Japanese nursing students in Tohoku for the TOMODACHI J&J Disaster Nursing Training Program 2017! This program aims to support capacity building of nurses in the Tohoku region by focusing on the field of disaster medicine. In it’s third year, ten nursing students from the Tohoku region and one mentor will be selected to participate in the program. Your text caption goes here. You can change the position of the caption and set styles in the block’s settings tab. For more information, click here.
Recruiting for the TOMODACHI FIRST Program 2017
TOMODACHI Food Innovation for Regional Sustainability in Tohoku (FIRST) Program invests in the future of food innovation in Japan, with particular focus on the Tohoku region.This program grows the leadership and cross-cultural skills within the next generation of Japanese (from university students to age 35), who are committed to social innovation in the production, processing, distribution, and/or consumption of food in Japan.

From May 1 to May 13, 2017, approximately 10 participants from Tohoku will travel to Seattle, Washington and take part in a two-week training that amplifies their capacity to transform the food system in Tohoku and throughout Japan. For more information, click here.
TOMODACHI Opportunities

Marketing & Communications Manager (Tokyo Office)

The U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) and the TOMODACHI Initiative is seeking a Marketing & Communications Manager that will develop and implement a comprehensive strategic communications program to develop the profile and brand of TOMODACHI among a diverse audience and stakeholders, including senior corporate executives, government leaders, recipients of support, donors, press and the general public. For more information and to apply, click here

Intern, U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) & TOMODACHI Initiative (Tokyo Office)

The U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) and the TOMODACHI Initiative is seeking unpaid interns for this Spring and Summer. U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) and TOMODACHI offers an exciting environment for interns to be exposed to non-profit, corporate, and government fields. Responsibilities for interns include creating and drafting documents, translation, website management, social media management, newsletter development support, public speaking, communication with program participants, designing presentations and posters, and event planning.
For more information and to apply, click here.

Update from Team TOMODACHI - January 2017

For donors, supporters, and friends of the TOMODACHI Initiative and
the TOMODACHI Generation.



Led by the U.S.-Japan Council, and the United States Embassy Tokyo, the TOMODACHI Initiative is a public-private partnership born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake. TOMODACHI invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs.
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