JACTIM FOUNDATION CONTINUES TO SUPPORT JAPAN STUDIES PROGRAMME IN UM, FORGING CLOSER TIES BETWEEN MALAYSIA AND JAPAN
JACTIM (The Japanese Chamber of Trade & Industry, Malaysia) through its Foundation, has been contributing to not only the economic aspects of Malaysia but also to the sectors such as culture, society, education and welfare. Established in 1994 with the participation of all members under JACTIM, the JACTIM Foundation starting its donation and support activities to various academic institutions in Malaysia since 1996. This is for the purpose of strengthening the friendship goodwill relationship through promotion of mutual understanding between Malaysia and Japan.
The Foundation at its annual general meeting this year has approved another budget of RM60,000 for the year 2018 as financial support to the Japan Studies Programme at the Department of East Asian Studies, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Malaya (UM). This support is to assist the further development of Japan Studies Programme in UM as the only undergraduate program which offers specialization in the field of Japan studies in Malaysia.
Breakdown of the RM60,000 grant are as follows:
- A total of RM14,000 scholarships for 14 students majoring Japan Studies who already completed first year of studies;
- A total of RM5,000 awards for 2 excellent students majoring Japan Studies who already completed their second year of studies;
- RM10,000 to be distributed as research grant for postgraduate students who specializing in Japan Studies;
- RM5,000 to conduct thesis writing workshops for postgraduate students at the Department of East Asian Studies;
- RM10,000 for the purchase of books and journals related to Japan Studies;
- RM10,000 to publish and launch a book on Japan; and
- RM6,000 to organise activities to promote Japan as well as the Japan Studies Programme.
These make the sum of grant that has been contributed by the JACTIM Foundation amounted to RM1,329,200 so far.
The Japan Studies Programme at UM was established in 1993 with the funding by the Japanese Official Development Assistance amounting to 50 million yen. Having been offered for 25 years, the relatively higher number of students is a testament to the popularity of this programme in Malaysia. A number of graduates of the program have since been involved with a number of major Malaysian, Japanese and other multinational firms. With the skills set they acquire, some graduates are able to mould themselves into successful entrepreneurs breaking into the Japanese market. A number of graduates have also been absorbed into teaching positions in various higher education institutions which include UM, UKM, UMS, UPSI, UMK, UiTM, Keio University, KUIS and UTAR, to name a few.
It is hoped that through this kind of support, it will deepen the understanding of Japan among the students, thus will bring long term benefits for the relationship of both countries.