Dec 26, 2019
Student Activity Station (SAS), a student organization that aims to connect students and the local community, was selected for the Prime Minister’s Prize as part of the Youth of the Year Who Are Creating the Future Awards that the Cabinet Office presents to individuals and/or organizations in recognition of outstanding achievements by children and young people in the field of community service with an eye on the future. An award ceremony was held at the Cabinet Office Auditorium on Thursday, November 21, and awards were presented by Ministers of State.
SAS is a student organization that uses exchange events to create connections between APU students and local residents. Since its establishment in 2008, it has implemented a wide range of activities to promote interactions between APU students and local residents. Operating mainly in Beppu City, where APU is located, and in Oita City, SAS plans and implements exchange events at local community centers, children's centers, elementary schools, and junior high schools, and it involves both registered and non-registered student members to encourage proactive exchange. Leveraging the international makeup of its membership and the university, SAS activities focus primarily on international understanding education, but the group also runs local walking tours in which international students can interact with local residents. It holds between 20 and 25 events every year and has been consistently active since its establishment 11 years ago.
English event at a local community center
Cultural exchange event at a high school
The head of SAS, Saaya Nakamori, remarked on SAS winning the award by saying, “This year marks the 11th year since SAS was founded. I believe our group was selected for the Prime Minister's Prize because of our ongoing efforts to encourage exchange between students and the local community, and I am deeply honored. I am grateful to all the people who have supported SAS activities to date. We take advantage of the large international student body at APU to hold events mainly for local elementary and junior high school students in which we introduce them to the cultures of various countries and regions and teach them English. When I see the students having a good time interacting with the children, it makes me happy and gives me encouragement. The word ‘Station’ in our name refers to a place where many people gather. Going forward, we plan to hold even more activities that will expand the connections and networks forged between our students and the local residents.”
Head of SAS, N Saaya Nakamori (APS, 4th year)