May 30, 2006

Tokyo’s Minato City and Temple University, Japan Campus (TUJ), have concluded a basic agreement to cooperate on a host of projects. Minato City Mayor Masaaki Takei and TUJ Dean Kirk R. Patterson formally inked the agreement at a signing ceremony at the university’s campus on May 29

Under the agreement, TUJ and Minato City will collaborate with the aim of fostering international understanding and cross-cultural communication. The arrangement focuses on three areas: education, culture and community development. Using internships and other means, it will also promote human resource development.

Plans in the educational area include seminars on English instruction for Minato City teachers and projects to promote international understanding at elementary schools. Other plans include an English-language program for junior high school students during their summer holidays and language courses for Minato City residents and employees. In the cultural arena, activities will include reciprocal use of libraries and the promotion of international exchanges. Community development initiatives call for cooperation related to environmental issues and local events.

“Among Tokyo’s 23 central municipalities, Minato City is extremely rich in terms of internationalism,” Mayor Takei pointed out. “I expect this strong partnership with TUJ to further enrich Minato City’s character as an international locale, and to help us develop into a mecca for international cultural exchange.”

“TUJ is honored and delighted to conclude this agreement with Minato City,” Patterson said. “Up to now, we have contributed to the local community primarily by providing a high-quality American university education. This new arrangement allows us to undertake a broader array of activities with Minato City. We very much look forward to working with them.

“With the globalization comes a need for all local governments to prepare their citizens to operate in the international economy,” Patterson continued. “With this in mind, Minato City has clearly shown that it recognizes the importance of education and wants to be a leader in Japan’s internationalization. We hope to provide opportunities for those who live and work in Minato City to acquire the communication skills necessary to be truly global citizens.”