April 30, 2008

Each student at TUJ is pursuing his or her own learning path, tackling unique challenges along the way. We’d like to introduce three recent success stories.

TUJ student wins the Grand Prize at the Yubari International Student Film Festival 2008

John A Lipartito, a Film and Media Arts (FMA) major at TUJ, won the Grand Prize at the 2nd Yubari International Student Film Festival, which was held from Feb. 22 to 24, 2008 in Yubari, Hokkaido. The award-winning film MRA: The Monster Removal Agency is a 20-minute action comedy inspired by Japanese television hero shows and American horror films of the 80’s. “MRA” was selected from 6 finalists from the U.S., China, Brazil and Japan. Mr. Karl Neubert, a FMA instructor at TUJ said, “It is the first time I know of a foreigner winning a major prize at a Japanese film festival with a film shot on location in Japan. This marks a major milestone in student filmmaking history.”

John A Lipartito (artist’s name “JR Lipartito”) commented, “I originally came to Japan from central New York in 2001 to teach English. Like the main character in “MRA”, I wanted to find a job that suited me better, so I left teaching in the summer of 2007 to study film at Temple University, Japan Campus. I would like to stay in Japan and become a director of commercials, television programs, and feature films, and I hope my work will reach both Japanese and American audiences.”

For further info. on the MRA, please go to http://vimeo.com/18865496

TUJ Student Government presents “Iraq Week”

To give the TUJ community insight and perspectives on current affairs in Iraq and the United States, the TUJ Student Government planned and organized a highly successful “Iraq Week”. They invited three special guest speakers to give presentations during the week. On Tuesday, April 1, the Iraq Ambassador, Dr. Al-Jumaily delivered a talk on campus. He was followed on Thursday, April 3, by U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Gary A. Kling, 1st Marine Division air officer during Operation Iraqi Freedom II, who shared his experiences with TUJ students. Finally on Friday April 4, Mr. Kirill Konin, the Director of UNHCR Refugee Film Festival, presented the documentary film “Iraq in Fragments”. An official UN Refugee Film Festival selection, it won multiple awards at the Sundance Film Festival, and was nominated for an Academy Award. For more information, see http://www.iraqinfragments.com/.

TUJ Student wins Second Prize in Swadesh DeRoy Scholarship competition

TUJ student Christopher Meyers won second prize in the Swadesh DeRoy Scholarship competition 2007-2008, sponsored by the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan (FCCJ). Christopher’s video on vending machines in Japan was chosen from 25 entries (18 text, 4 photo, 3 video) from 10 universities. Christopher will receive ¥300,000 as his prize.

“We loved his highly original topic,” commented Dan Sloan, one of the judges in the video category. “Meyers entry showed initiative, good reporting and skillful editing, to produce an entry that ‘had all the trappings of a professional product'”.

The Swadesh DeRoy Scholarship was created in honor of respected career journalist and FCCJ member, Swadesh DeRoy, to encourage and support university students interested in entering the journalism field.

The award winning video can be viewed at http://www.chris-meyers.com/CM-Vending.mov.