HOMEAsahi Now!2019年

2020 New Year's Greetings from the President


Katsuyuki Ohtomo, President of Asahi University

Entering a New Era Reiwa

 Happy New Year to you all.

 Last spring, Japan saw the end of the Heisei era and we entered into a new era, Reiwa. Looking back on the 30 years of Heisei, there have been many momentous events both at home and abroad. Some of these events brought much joy, but others brought great sadness. Earthquakes, including the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and other natural disasters such as storms and floods exposed the aging post-war infrastructure of Japan.   In addition, when faced with unprecedented typhoons and localized torrential downpours brought about by global warming, I keenly felt that such issues need to be addressed on a global scale.
 Last year, we affirmed our commitment to the "Asahi University X SDGs in GIFU" project. The SDGs, meaning Sustainable Development Goals, are international development objectives with a goal to reach them by 2030. These goals were outlined in "the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development" adopted by the UN Summit in 2015. They consist of 17 goals and 169 targets that the UN Member States pledged to achieve. Above all, they pledged that on our planet “no one will be left behind”. And these goals are universal. The SDGs are undertaken by all UN nations, developing and developed countries alike.
 This unity and spirit of cooperation is mirrored in Japan, where industry, government and academia are working as one to achieve the SDGs. In our campus, we have established the SDGs Promotion Office to enhance education, research, medical treatment at affiliated medical institutions, as well as various types of fieldwork undertaken by students and faculty members in Japan and overseas. All global change begins at the local level, therefore through these activities we will strive to realize a sustainable society from right here in Gifu.
 This summer the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be held, and graduates and affiliates of our university are highly expected to play active roles. In addition, many current faculty staff and students will be involved in the event. This is Japan’s second honor to hold the Olympics. The first time was in 1964 during Japan's period of high economic growth, and holding the event gave many people new dreams and inspirations. Likewise the 1964 Tokyo Olympics gave Japan an opportunity to show the international community its efforts and achievements to return Japan to prosperity following the postwar reconstruction.
At this year's Olympics, we intend to demonstrate both at home and abroad that we are a mature nation even in the face of downsizing due to a declining population, and to review the value of sports once again and seize the opportunity to promote public health. I hope that our students will connect and have more interaction with both the local and global society, and through diverse opportunities discover their own individual role and the potential impact they can have on the future.
 The coming year, 2021, will be a turning-point for us because our university will celebrate its 50th anniversary. Based on "The Founding Spirit of Asahi University", we will continue to strive for forward looking education, research, and medical treatments that offer benefits for all.

 Thank you, and I look forward to your continued support.