APU applied to receive funding under the Ministry of Education's Contemporary Education Needs Initiative Support Program (Contemporary GP) in the field of Contributing to Regional Revitalization(Local Areas). Its project entitled Educational Systems that Utilize Student Capabilities for Community Contribution was successfully selected for the GP Award.
Themes for Contemporary GP subsidies are set based on the recommendations of government councils and the needs of society. Only the best projects are selected. The objective of this year's GP is to provide financial support to promote the development of talented human resources who will become the leaders of the next generation.
This year a total of 600 applications on 6 themes were submitted. Of those, 128 applications were submitted on the theme of "Contributing to Regional Revitalization(Local Areas)".
The Tourism and Hospitality Institute, one of APU's interdisciplinary programs, will serve as the core organization for APU's project. The aim is to establish a new academic program– the Hot Spring Tourism Renaissance Program–that encourages students to cooperate with the community in developing the world famous, international hot spring city of Beppu through tourism development.
This program differs from traditional area studies where students passively attend lectures and receive instruction; instead, a curriculum utilizing student capabilities will be developed to allow students to contribute proactively. Student capabilities will be further developed through interactions between the students and the community. This will, in turn, contribute to community building and the development of a model for community and student/university relations.
President Monte Cassim offered the following remarks on this year's GP Award.
Since its inception, APU has strived to create an internationally viable university through its myriad endeavors. In 2003, APU received Characteristic GP funding for its Bilingual Education System on a Multicultural Campus, followed in 2004 by the Contemporary GP for Promoting Student Mobility. APU also received the Contemporary GP for its Career Education for Global Human Resources Development project in 2006.
This time APU has received GP funding for its Educational Systems that Utilize Student Capabilities for Community Contribution which aims to contribute to regional revitalization in Beppu City and the local area. To be repeatedly selected for GP funding for these programs that respond to strong societal needs is indeed an honor.
This recognition depends not only on our efforts, but also on the cooperation of the local community and the Advisory Committee and through the support of countless individuals in every sector. I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to each and every one of them.
In line with its mission, this GP funding will allow APU to continue to carry out activities that draw on the facilities and human resources of the higher education system to make a contribution to revitalizing Beppu City in Oita Prefecture. We look forward to your continued support of our endeavors.
Ritsumeikan University has also been selected for 2 Contemporary Good Practice Awards. Click here for details (Available in Japanese only).