2022-23 TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program Kicks Off
In September, Lehigh University and Rice University launched the 2022-23 TOMODACHI-STEM Women’s Leadership and Research Program with a series of virtual workshops and cultural exchanges. The TOMODACHI-STEM program offers research internship opportunities and cultural and leadership programming for female Japanese university students. Ten students from universities throughout Japan were selected for the 2022-23 program.
The program is separated into two sections: a virtual program from September 6 through September 19 and an in-person research experience in February and March 2023. The participants attended the live virtual class entitled “Oral Communications in the STEM Fields.” In this two-week course, students refined their level of English proficiency by focusing on developing their confidence, authority, and effectiveness in communicating in intercultural contexts in the classroom, in the research laboratory, in giving presentations, and in casual conversations and emails. One key activity they engaged in is “virtual roommates,” where they vlog and exchange comments and resources with an assigned roommate who is a more senior female student in the STEM fields in the United States. A second key activity involved them interviewing and presenting about their host professors and/or hosting senior students at either Lehigh University or Rice University. The virtual program introduced the projects on which the students will be working this spring and a first opportunity for them to prepare for the challenges of living and conducting research in the US.
This program is generously funded by Dow Chemical Japan.