We have the honor of welcoming Councillor Shigeki Kobayashi of the Embassy of Japan in Thailand, the Director of Japan Information Services, and various guests from Japanese institutions and companies based in Thailand.
I also would like to thank Rector Somkit Lertpaithoonand his colleagues of Thammasat University for participating in today’s ceremony.
Many faculty members and students of Chuo have also travelled from Japan to celebrate this special occasion.
As stated in Chuo University’s International Initiatives, we are currently focusing on developing a strong organizational structure, a solid educational foundation, and both domestic and overseas networks in the Asia-Pacific region.
As a key step in spearheading these initiatives, we established our first overseas hub office in the East-West Center of the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa in December 2013.
Now, we are delighted to establish our second overseas hub office at Thammasat University. We have a long-term partnership with Thammasat University since relations began in 1985.
The new office is located in the Thammasat University Faculty of Law’s Japanese Law Research Center on the Tha Phrachan campus in central Bangkok. The office has been named the “Chuo-Thammasat Collaboration Center”.
Currently, Chuo has various academic programs in Thailand with Thammasat and other Thai universities.
These include exchange programs, global field studies, internships, and our Japanese language-teaching program called SEND.
In May 2013, Chuo University held the “1st Global Chuo Symposium” in Bangkok utilizing a variety of local resources and networks as part of our Japanese Government Project on Developing Global Human Resources.
In addition, we have recently signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with JICA to offer Chuo students various on-site opportunities to learn about ASEAN’s current development progress.
In addition, the Chuo Alumni Association in Bangkok is one of our largest and most active alumni groups worldwide, providing invaluable support for the growing number of exchanges among individuals and institutions in the Chuo international community.
Chuo will continue striving to expand its teaching, research, and social contribution through the new hub office in Bangkok and the first overseas hub office in Hawaiʻi.
With Chuo University’s founding spirit of “Fostering the Ability to Apply Knowledge to Practice”, Chuo has fostered many individuals that can contribute to global society.
As Chuo is commemorating its 130th anniversary this year, it is our great pleasure to establish the new Chuo-Thammasat Collaboration Center, which I am sure will add a unique, new page in the history of Chuo University.
Chuo University’s long-term partnership with Thammasat University began 30 years ago in November 1985. Thammasat is one of Chuo’s oldest academic partners.
Thirty years ago, when our two universities signed the cooperation agreement that began our special partnership, Chuo conferred upon the then Rector, Prof. Dr. Nongyao Chaiseri, an Honorary Doctorate of Commerce.
At that time, to celebrate Chuo University’s 100th anniversary on November 12, 1985, we had the honor to receive a keynote lecture from Prof. Dr. Nongyao Chaiseri, titled “For a more balanced relationship with Japan through closer cooperation”.
Now, I feel familiar to the spirit of Prof. Chaiseri who suggested the “more balanced relationship through closer cooperation” in his keynote lecture.
As you all can see, many young participants from Thailand and Japan have joined us today. These students from both countries will hold a symposium later today.
I believe these young people embody the spirit of Prof. Chaiseri, which has been inherited by Chuo and Thammasat through our shared history. I am certain that our students will carry this spirit into their own future as well.
In closing, I look forward to many more years of cooperation and mutual benefit for Chuo and Thammasat as we continue to work together, nurturing countless more bright young people like those who have joined us here today.
Again, thank you all very much for your kindness, hospitality and generous support, now and for years to come.
Prof. Dr. Shozaburo SAKAI
21st March 2015