ISU students vist R-MC

The Randolph-Macon community has done it again! As most students already know, the Yellow Jacket family is a welcoming bunch. Just recently, R-MC had the opportunity to welcome a group of visiting students from Ishinomaki Senshu University (ISU) in Japan.

After four Randolph-Macon students and their advisors visited the ISU campus this past summer, R-MC hosted five students, a faculty member, and a staff member from the university for a 10 day visit. During the 10 day trip, the Japanese visitors had the opportunity to research the ways in which the U.S. plans for the effects of natural disasters. In addition, they had the opportunity to collaborate with the four R-MC student visitors on their research.

For those who are not familiar with Ishinomaki Senshu University, it is a private college that was established in 1989 and is a predecessor of Senshu University.

The extensive trip to Japan may never have occurred without the Taylor Anderson Memorial Fund’s (TAMF) donation of a grant through the U.S. Japan Council’s TOMODACHI Initiative. The U.S. Japan Council’s primary focus has been to establish this project, and by creating the TAMF Initiative, they have been responsible for generating the next set of Japanese and American leaders.

Individuals who donated to the initiative are based in both Japan and the U.S. Due to their generosity, ISU students have had the privilege of receiving grants to partake in this program alongside the following R-MC students: Atticus Finn ‘16, Daniel Whitehead ‘17, Jessica Caso ‘16, and Tom Buchanan ‘16.

The R-MC students who collaborated with the ISU students were participants of the Shapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program. During their visit to Japan, they each had the unique opportunity to analyze the 3/11 disaster—the earthquake and tsunami incident—from their own point of view.

The visiting students’ primary focus on their visit to R-MC was to conduct and collaborate on research. However, their itinerary was jam-packed with exciting activities. The ISU students’ visit began with a luncheon in their honor, but it was not limited to just this.

As an added bonus, the visiting students had the opportunity to sight see throughout the Ashland and Richmond area. This sightseeing trip included a visit to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and a day-trip to Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). During their day-trip to VCU, the ISU students had the opportunity to meet with VCU’s visiting students from Shimane University in Japan.

R-MC will work alongside VCU as the students visit Canon U.S.A, Inc. in Newport News, Virginia. The goal of this trip is to discover more about the effectiveness of communication through the cultures of Canon’s Japanese and American employees.

Besides just having the opportunity to venture throughout the Ashland and Richmond area, the ISU students also had the opportunity to attend the River City Taiko event that was hosted by R-MC. The performance from the River City Taiko group included several drummers alongside choreographed dances. This event may have been scheduled for the visiting students, but many R-MC students came out to see the performance as well.

Unfortunately, the ISU students have now all returned to their homes, but R-MC hopes that they enjoyed their stay in Ashland. All in all, hosting the visiting Japanese students proves that the Yellow Jacket family’s generosity and accomplishments are never-ending.

-Dory Jackson ’16, Senior Features Editor

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