Professor TAKEUCHI, Atsushi
Senior Dean, Faculty of Science and Engineering
(Department of Applied Physics, School of Advanced Science and Engineering)
Q. What are your views concerning society’s expectations of the Faculty of Science and Engineering?
Waseda University was the first private university to initiate human resources development in the field of science and engineering, when we established the former Science and Engineering Department in 1908. This came about through the passion and dedication of Shigenobu Okuma, who had contemplated establishment of a science and engineering faculty since the founding of the university in 1882. Waseda University’s Faculty of Science and Engineering, which offers both scientific and engineering studies, is characterized by a comprehensive learning system that enables students to study across a wide range, from a quest for truths lying in the depths of nature to applications that serve society directly. Throughout our history of over a century, we have continued to put our best efforts into producing promising talent for society. It is our good fortune to be able to say that our graduates play active roles and enjoy excellent reputations in every field they have entered. Going forward, I believe that society will continue to place high expectations on all the students who study at and graduate from Waseda.
I hope our students will continue to acquire scientific knowledge and perspectives in the Faculty of Science and Engineering, and to develop our founder Shigenobu Okuma’s “Zaiya spirit” at the same time. This “Zaiya spirit” is a spirit of independence, of thinking and acting independently without relying on others. Today, we live in an era of uncertainty under globalized conditions, and it is not easy to predict what the future holds. It is my wish that all students of Waseda University can maintain mental strength even in such times, make rational decisions in a calm and intelligent manner, and become true leaders who can carve out a bright future for science and society.
Enhancement of our global standard science and engineering curriculum
Q. What do you think is necessary in order to meet expectations for a global standard curriculum?
We have already put in place various initiatives to this end. In particular, we have made progress on developing an international environment for education and research. We have launched an International Program allows that student to conduct all their studies in English, for example, and it is now in its 7th year. International students from around the world enrolling in and graduating from the program are heading out into the world. In addition to further enriching the curriculum of our International Program, we are also gradually developing English-based classes that have traditionally been conducted in Japanese, and moving ahead with reforms in order to develop talents who can be pioneering scientists and take on leadership roles in the international community.
We aim to provide all our students with more opportunities to experience learning on the frontlines of the global arena, moreover, through dedicated, enthusiastic research activities in our graduate school. Their time in graduate school offers ample opportunities for students to present their research results at international conferences, in which outstanding researchers from around the world participate, to achieve significant growth and develop their potential, as well as to gain insight into science and other parts of the world.
Waseda University has also been selected for the Top Global University Project initiated by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in 2014. Under this project, the university launched the concept “Waseda Goes Global – A Plan to Build a Worldwide Academic Network that is Open, Dynamic and Diverse.” The Faculty of Science and Engineering maintains three model units under the project: Unit for Multiscale Analysis, Modeling and Simulation; Frontier of Embodiment Informatics: ICT and Robotics; and Energy and Nanomaterials. We are taking advantage of the experience and results attained by these three units’ activities throughout the Faculty of Science and Engineering in order to raise our research and educational levels further. These initiatives enable all students to acquire a meaningful learning experiences at the school.
To be the faculty contributing to “Waseda as a Research University”
Q. What is your resolution as Senior Dean of the Faculty?
The university has an important mission to fulfill in the areas of education, research, social contribution, and creation of culture. I especially aim to integrate research and education in order to raise Waseda’s level as a “research university.” The Faculty of Science and Engineering has been establishing a good reputation in society as an educational institution along with the university, and our graduates are active in their chosen fields, including private corporations and institution in other sectors. I also hope that we can improve our standards as a research institute further, develop outstanding human resources through world-class research activities, and send them out into the world.
Embrace aspirations for science, and take a bold step toward the future
Q. Please express your thoughts to prospective students of the Faculty of Science and Engineering?
I believe that those who wish to study science and engineering at the university level have dreams and aspirations with respect to science. Science offers double sources of joy: the joy of making new discoveries through exploration, and the joy of changing the world through the creation of new functions by making new discoveries. From the perspective of expanding human knowledge and activities, both of these can be infinitely interesting and fulfilling. Once you enter the world of science, you will definitely have stimulating and exciting experiences. Find your own dreams through these experiences, and brush up your abilities to realize them.
The university is a place where you can find various opportunities as long as you seek them. Enjoy everything you can at the university, including academic learning, club activities, fun and friends in this valuable time of your life.