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Apr 24, 2019
BEPPU, Oita – Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) officially joined a partnership with the Kyushu Economic Federation (KEF) at a signing ceremony on April 9. The aim of the agreement is to develop collaborative industry-university projects between the two parties. With this agreement, students from 90 countries and regions will be able to partner with the nearly 1,000 Kyushu-based companies in the KEF on projects to encourage economic development in Kyushu and cultivate global talent.
In a press conference held after the ceremony, KEF Chairman Yutaka Aso stated, “While Japan faces structural challenges such as the dwindling birthrate and aging population, we aim to change Japan under our slogan of ‘Move Japan forward from Kyushu.’ I look forward to boosting exchange with overseas partners and raising the level of Kyushu-based companies by using APU’s corporate training programs to improve the language ability and communication skills of company personnel before sending them abroad and creating opportunities to acclimate them to dealing with foreign visitors. I am excited to do something positive for Kyushu together with APU, an extremely unique university home to international students from a wide array of countries.”
Next, APU President Deguchi remarked, “I look forward to promoting collaboration between APU and the nearly 1,000 member companies of the KEF. I would like to create internship opportunities for APU students, have company employees do ‘reverse internships’ at APU, and engage in joint product development like we did when students worked with Fundokin Soy Sauce Co. to create a halal honey soy sauce. I also hope our students and the international tourists who visit Kyushu gain a deeper appreciation for the island. To borrow the words of Chairman Aso, I am happy that we can ‘move Japan forward from Kyushu’ by tackling a wide range of exciting challenges.”
Overview of the APU-KEF Agreement
The parties will implement three types of projects based on the keywords of creativity, learning, and development.
1) Creativity: Global Business Acceleration Project
2) Learning: Kyushu Globalization Project
3) Development: Project for the Development of Leaders for the Next Generation
Specifically, APU and the KEF will implement nine programs to help energize the economy of the greater Kyushu region and develop global talent. Namely, they will create internship opportunities, boost the global competency of Kyushu-based company personnel, incubate Kyushu-based venture companies, have students publicize Kyushu's tourism resources, and collaborate on product development.