ASU, Meiji University discuss new program that will bring Japanese students to ASU

March 13, 2018

On March 8, Arizona State University's School of Politics and Global Studies hosted Professors Takumi Takeda, associate dean for international affairs, and Hisakazu Kato, chief associate dean in the School of Political Science and Economics from Meiji University to discuss their new joint program.

The 3+1+1 program, modeled on the successful 4+1 program, will connect the two universities to provide students with two degrees in five years. Students will spend three years in an undergraduate program in Meiji focusing on political science and economics. They will then spend two years at Arizona State University, finishing up their undergraduate experience as well as their master's degree. Meiji University professors Takumi Takeda (left) and Hisakazu Kato (right) Meiji University professors Takumi Takeda (left) and Hisakazu Kato. Download Full Image

“We have been globalizing our education so many students are interested in coming to the United States to study politics and economics in English,” Takeda said.

To prepare students for their collegiate experience in the United States, students are offered English training as well as both economic and political science courses taught in English while in Meiji.

“It’s a sort of preparation for them to take those courses and come to Arizona State University,” Takeda said.

Takeda added that they have had great interest from students in the early stages of recruitment for the program. Meiji hopes to send two students to begin the program in fall 2018.

The graduate program within the School of Politics and Global Studies is small and culturally diverse, according to director of graduate studies and associate professor, Magda Hinojosa. The school has graduate students from Austria, Mexico, Indonesia, Iran and all over the world but none yet from Japan.

“I’m really excited about what they can contribute,” Hinojosa said. “The learning environment is improved for everyone when we have that diversity of life experiences. I think it is going to be really exciting for us.”

Initially there were challenges with aligning the Japanese academic calendar with the American one, but Takeda and Kato both met with various faculty and staff during their visit to learn more about ASU and its academic offerings.

With the calendar challenge now solved, the group is excited about the collaboration.

“We are so happy to have this kind of relationship,” Takeda said.

Matt Oxford

Manager of marketing and communications, School of Politics and Global Studies


ASU student exceeds expectations to make his family proud

March 13, 2018

On most nights, it might be possible to catch a glimpse of Arizona State University student Alexander Bernard somewhere in Hayden library with his head buried in a book, working tirelessly to achieve his goals and make his family proud, just as so many other students strive to do.

Graduating in May with a Bachelor of Science in political science and a certificate in political thought and leadership, Bernard has succeeded in his academic and professional pursuits during his time in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Alexander Bernard will be graduating in May with a Bachelor of Science in political science and a certificate in political thought and leadership. Download Full Image

“I chose to attend ASU because I come from a Sun Devil family,” Bernard said. “It is a growing and thriving university that offers so much opportunity for anyone, regardless of financial background or where someone comes from.”

Bernard grew up in an international household, his mother being from Cambodia and his father from France. His diverse upbringing interested Bernard in international relations, politics and policy at a young age, and he knew learning about world affairs and politics was the right area of study for him.

Going beyond his studies, Bernard has been a heavily involved student, engaging in multiple activities on campus to further his skills. His positions have included being the co-president for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Ambassadors, communication assistant for the Center for Political Thought and Leadership, and a student representative on the advisory board for the Department of Career and Professional Development.

“I am also the former president of the Political Thought and Leadership student club,” Bernard. said “From guest speakers to intellectual debates, I was fascinated with the fact that ASU provides a program where students can learn civic leadership and political debate.”

In addition, Bernard was able to join the Capital Scholars program in the School of Politics and Global Studies, which allowed him to join over a dozen other students in Washington D.C. for two months. Through the program, Bernard interned for the American Enterprise Institute, a public policy think-tank.

“I met so many amazing people and made lifelong friends that I am still in contact with today,” Bernard said. “I highly enjoyed my time there, and the experience opened my eyes to a whole new world.”

His work in public policy has inspired Bernard to consider the idea of working in the public sector after graduation to gain more experience before pursuing a master’s degree in public policy or public administration.

Although the world outside of academia can be intimidating, Bernard feels as though he is equipped to take on new challenges.

“The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences prepared me for life after graduation by giving me the opportunity to pursue what I love and enhancing my communication skills to new heights,” Bernard said. “The amount of opportunity the college offers is beyond question and takes an effective holistic approach to interdisciplinary student engagement. I took classes from multiple schools and became a full learner, not just a specific-topic learner.”

Excelling in his classes and extracurricular activities, Bernard said his motivation to thrive comes from his mother. A woman who came to the United States to raise her three children on her own, she faced adversity at every turn, overcame her obstacles, and was able to earn a degree at ASU while raising Bernard and his siblings.

“My mother is my biggest inspiration,” Bernard said. “Her drive and tenacity pushed me every single day throughout my studies. Everything I do, I do for my mom.”

Olivia Knecht

Student writer-reporter, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences