On July 20, Fulbright research grant winner David ANDERSON, who was a participant in the first US Department of State Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program hosted by Okayama University in 2019, arrived on campus and paid a curtesy call on President MAKINO Hirofumi.
Mr. ANDERSON was among the outstanding American university and graduate students selected to participate in the CLS program, an intensive study program focusing on Japanese language and culture, in June 2019. During the two-month program, students gained a deeper understanding of “community development through civic engagement” while taking part in various activities hosted by Okayama University. After returning to the US, Mr. ANDERSON planned to continue researching community development in Okayama.
Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus pandemic, his plans were put on hold for a year. In July 2021, he was finally able to return to Okayama University and continue his research as a Fulbright research grant winner at the Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Currently, he plans to study the roles of local councils in societies with declining populations under the guidance of Associate Professor IWABUCHI Yasushi. During their meeting, President MAKINO encouraged Mr. ANDERSON by saying, “I hope that as a CLS graduate, you will lead other CLS students and carry the message of Okayama University’s SDGs efforts to the world.”
● CLS program
The CLS program is a US Department of State initiative aimed at encouraging young Americans to become proficient in one of 15 languages, including Russian and Chinese, which have been recognized as critical to America’s national security and economic prosperity. Domestic acceptance to the program began in 2010, and the program is run by the American Councils for International Education, a US non-profit organization specializing in international education and exchange.