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Home >  About University >  Message from the President

Message from the President

I hope to cultivate young, strong leaders who will venture forth from Nagano into the world.

At the University of Nagano we aim to provide an education through which students can broaden their worldview by encountering other cultures and societies and learning about diverse value systems. The goal of many Japanese students is simply getting into a university, but here we provide a high-quality, rigorous education that is not available at other universities so students can master the skills to achieve their dreams.

Cultivating a global viewpoint and mutually recognizing diverse values

The 21st century is referred to as an "era of globalization” in which various problems are causing global-scale transformations in a variety of areas, including information and funding. It is also the era of the “knowledge-based society” in which all social activities are founded on new knowledge, information, and technologies. The University of Nagano, blessed by a rich natural environment, actively contributes to its regional community, which is a valuable knowledge base for exploring education and research that are in tune with the times. All students are required to take intensive classes in English — the international language — and participate in the Overseas Program to cultivate a global point of view. We also welcome international students from abroad to foster global communication and create a place in which students can mutually recognize diverse values.
At the same time, students learn both knowledge in their field of specialty, which will be the central pillar of their future lives, and liberal arts insight, which will serve as a compass indicating their future path. This balanced process of learning will help students cultivate a rich humanity and develop a high level of ethics. All first-year students live in the dormitory so they can develop independence and sociability by learning from and helping one another in a group while interacting with the nearby community. This educational dormitory aims to produce entrepreneurs who strive to innovate society, as well as experts with entrepreneurial spirits in various fields. The term "global" is used with the intention of promoting not only internationalization, but also localization from a global viewpoint. Our university, with Nagano at the center of its axis, aims to cultivate leaders who will be active throughout the world.

Discussion-based education is the starting point of education

Japanese students today lack the propensity to engage in meaningful discussion. Discussion requires various types of skills; this refers not only to voicing one’s own views, but also to understanding the opinions of others and organizing one’s thoughts. Rather than one-sided classes taught by teachers, we promote active learning through discussions. During discussion, we want our students to enjoy the surprise and excitement when they realize that even students from the same age group have different ideas. We also want our teachers to be actively involved in these multidisciplinary discussions. This is how education should be: students and teachers learning together and inspiring one another.

Lifelong education in Nagano,
the prefecture with Japan’s longest healthy life expectancy

Nagano Prefecture boasts Japan’s longest life expectancy. It has a healthy culture founded on beautiful nature, delicious foods, and kind people. Residents of Tokyo look with longing at Nagano. We hope to teach our students to love Nagano as well, and at the same time enjoy local foods and healthy eating practices at the dormitory. Nagano is currently aiming to shift from a prefecture that values traditional education to one that focuses on engaged learning. As we move into the era in which people will live to the age of 100, it is important to direct attention toward the importance of independent, continual learning, and for students to understand the joy of learning. As global leaders who can think of new ways to solve challenges, we hope that aspiring students will bring dreams and a sense of pride to the university as they actively move forward into the future.

Profile of the President

Masumi Kindaichi

Born in 1949
From Tokyo
Specialties: Russian language, linguistics

■Academic history
1971 Graduated from the School of Science and Engineering, Waseda University
1976 Completed the Master’s Course, Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Waseda University
1988 Completed the Doctoral Course, Graduate School of Humanities, University of Tokyo
1991 Doctor of Letters (University of Tokyo)

■Career history
1991 – 96 Assistant professor, Faculty of Science and Technology, Keio University
1996 – 2014 Professor, Faculty of Science and Technology, Keio University
2014 – present Emeritus professor, Keio University

■University career history
2001 – 03 Hiyoshi supervisor, Faculty of Science and Technology, Keio University
2005 – 07 Director, Keio Research Center for Foreign Language Education
2009 – 11 Head, Hiyoshi Curriculum Review Committee
2009 – 13 Main Hiyoshi supervisor, Faculty of Science and Technology, Keio University

1996 Tenses in the Russian Language (Sanseido), etc.

■Dictionaries compiled
1992 Iwanami Russian Dictionary (Iwanami Shoten), etc.

■Other projects
2003 – 07 NHK Russian Conversation teacher (TV), etc.

1994 3rd Shoichi Kimura Prize

Doctor of Letters (University of Tokyo). Worked in Russian-language education at Keio University. Helped determine the curriculum at the Keio Hiyoshi Campus of 9,000 students, and was also the general manager of the campus. He worked to enhance the educational content and actively introduced new educational methods including a four-quarter system.