Luncheon and Monthly Meetings
“The Beautiful Tones of Scholarship”
The Scholarship Committee celebrated its eight new scholars at the luncheon. The two recipients of the CWAJ Fukushima Relief Scholarship were not able to be there because they had to attend practicums that are required for graduation. They sent messages of thanks to CWAJ, which were read by the coordinators while their photos were shown.
The other six inspiring scholars, from Japan, Nepal, and South Korea, gave short self-introductions and then were asked a question by the selection committee coordinator. Having returned to Japan from Texas the day before just to attend the luncheon, Study Abroad recipient Dr. Mayumi Imahashi will go back to Texas with her two young children to study public health at the University of Texas School of Public Health. She is especially interested in developing an HIV education program for teenagers in Japan. When asked how she would cope with both school and home life there, she replied that she would rally her resources and perhaps her children would become more independent.
The recent devastating earthquakes in Nepal have brought out the caring and compassion of Dr. Samata Tamrakar, CWAJ-TACWG Non-Japanese Graduate scholarship recipient. She left soon after the luncheon to offer immediate help to her homeland as one of only three female neurosurgeons there. We were glad to meet her and see what a charming and talented woman we had chosen. The TAC-WG President, Linda Schnetzer, introduced her and was given a framed photo taken by Dr. Tamrakar, as photography is her hobby. After her service in Nepal, she will return to Osaka City University and her studies of neurology, with special emphasis on epilepsy. Her ambitious goals are to find new treatments that do not require medications, and to help dispel myths about this disease in Nepal.
Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism is the destination for Ms. Taeko Itabashi, recipient of the CWAJ Cultural Exchange Graduate Scholarship for Japanese Women to study Abroad, which is supported by the Japan Foundation. Her interests
are production of video news and documentaries, especially stories related to development and humanitarian issues. Not surprisingly, her hobby is watching videos. Ms. Itabashi said she was humbled and inspired by receiving this scholarship, and is motivated to help the next generation.
“You don’t have to worry, the autonomous driving is to enhance your driving safety, not do it for you,” said Ms. Hojung Jung, recipient of the CWAJ Graduate Scholarship for Non-Japanese Women to Study in Japan, CWAJ Sano Chikara Scholarship. She had flown in just that morning from Fukuoka to be with us. She is researching the sensors used by the onboard computer of autonomous driving cars, which she believes will provide freedom of movement to everyone, regardless of age or disability. And her hobby? Driving!
Starting his PhD at Tohoku University after many years of work, Scholarship for the Visually Impaired recipient Mr. Masayuki Izumi continues his interest in homeopathy by working on herbal substances at the genetic level. When asked how women could maintain their youthful beauty, he replied that it was important to have no stress and keep the tsubo (acupuncture points) of the hands and feet warm.
Our youngest scholar this year and a Scholarship for the Visually Impaired recipient, Mr. Makoto Tokumitsu wants to use his own experiences to be a bridge between able-bodied and disabled people. He is a fourth year student of social welfare at Taisho University.
In a break with tradition, instead of a speaker, we were entertained by Redhot & Blue, Yale’s oldest coed a cappella group. The 16 performers sang several jazz and pop classics, starting with “Fly Me to the Moon” and on to “Over the Rainbow” with an encore of “Hit the Road, Jack.” In parallel, a slideshow of CWAJ past scholars was shown starting with our early Travel Grantees and concluding with the 2014 Scholars.
If you are not a CWAJ member but would like to attend a luncheon, learn more about CWAJ, or attend an "Information Meeting", please contact Member Activities at firstname.lastname@example.org.