Kyushu Institute of Technology (Kyutech), Kyushu, Japan, September 2-7, 2019, 20 students from the Reverend Za'ba College, UPM Serdang campus and the Seri Rajang College, UPM Bintulu campus experienced the culture and the advancement of technology in Japan. Various activities were carried out, including two (2) days basic Japanese language classes to prepare students for interacting with the Japanese community here.
Students had the opportunity to take the Shinkansen train, also known as the "Bullet Train", which is one of Japan's most famous form of transportation connecting Kagoshima in western Japan to Shin Hakidate in Hokkaido. Students also had the opportunity to visit the city of Fukuoka, Hakata. The journey takes just 15 minutes from Kokura Station to Hakata (about 67km) from Kitakyushu city. The Shinkansen train is 54 years old and has become the main transport medium for five billion users in Japan.
Japan with its distinctive cultures has attracted the attention of the students who were thrilled by new experiences among the interesting ones are the recycling system, the sorting of garbage practised from home to virtually everywhere. Thanksgiving culture is also practiced here and gratitude is a must in their daily lives. Students also learned to use escalators the proper way and that is to stand on the left to give way when they are not in a hurry. Municipal water supply in each home is also very clean, and one can be drink straight from the tap.
The ethics of the Japanese community are so high that they emphasise discipline in terms of timeliness as evidenced by their highly publicized timetable of less than 10 seconds from the original schedule. In addition, their communities are often seen collecting garbage dumped by irresponsible people because cleanliness is a priority in their community. Big cities like Fukuoka and remote Kitakyushu always look clean and it's hard to see rubbish everywhere. They also care deeply for nature and have developed a love for the environment since they were in school.
The Japanese people were also raised to love their country and to live up to their patriotic spirit at all times. Through this programme, students also had the opportunity to attend a two-day workshop with 20 Kyutech students to conduct research on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) led by Dr. Takagi. They were divided into groups and asked to select one of the topics from the goals of the SDGs using the 'brainstorming' method in group and local community interviews. The issues raised concern the global issues in Malaysia and Japan. This kind of learning method is very practical and can have a positive impact in terms of consolidating students' ideas to address the problems facing both countries. In addition, students from both countries also received the initial exposure of working together to collaborate in international global research projects.
In conclusion, looking at the various social symptoms that are plaguing our home country, it is clear that we need to re-learn from the Japanese community in order to reinforce the core values in society. The fundamental point is to strengthen the family institution as the core of a healthy and stable society because it is capable of combating social and moral symptoms, then we can achieve the status of a developed nation in all respects as inspired by the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad.
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Arifin Bin Abdu
Rosidah Binti Basir
Communications Liaison Officer
Look-East Mobility Programme
UPM & Kyutech
1-15 September 2019
Date of Input: 11/09/2019 | Updated: 20/09/2019 | lanz
P.O Box 396, Nyabau Road,
97008 Bintulu, Sarawak,