2023 Activity Report vol.2:Hiroshima International Center

Activity Report of Open Application Program 2023 vol.2 (Course A)

High school students from the Philippines experience science in a multifaceted way in Hiroshima

Report from Hiroshima International Center

 With support from the Sakura Science Program, the Hiroshima International Center invited a total of 10 people (nine high school students and one supervisor) from the Philippine Science High School, which offers the highest level of foundational science knowledge in the Philippines. The program ran for six days, from June 12 to June 17, 2023.

 The program content provided the students with an experience of learning about science in a multifaceted way under the supervision of Hiroshima University Emeritus Professor Hideo Ikeda, stressing scientific experiments and practice and including a tour of the latest waste treatment facility as well as astronomy, agricultural science, biology, and physics. The students also learned about the effects of nuclear weapons on the human body and buildings through a visit to Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, and were encouraged to see the importance of using science and technology for human welfare around the world in a new light. During a campus tour of Hiroshima University and an opinion exchange session, we promoted studying in other countries by holding an exchange session with international students from the Philippines studying in Hiroshima. We also organized an exchange with students of the same age at Hiroshima University High School, Fukuyama, creating an opportunity for both sides to foster an international mindset and for continuing exchange in the future.

[June 13]

 The students visited the School of Integrated Arts and Sciences, Department of Integrated Global Studies (IGS), Hiroshima University to experience lectures and experiments in biology and physics. 

 During a campus tour and opinion exchange session with IGS students, the visiting students were able to directly observe campus life and became even more motivated to come to Japan for further study. Some of the participating IGS students were Japanese students who were going to study in the University of the Philippines, making this an opportunity to exchange beneficial information for both sides.

 We also offered the students a chance to experience wearing yukata to help them understand Japanese culture. They tied their own obi and enjoyed wearing Japanese clothing.

Activity Report Photo 1
Biology lecture and fieldwork
Activity Report Photo 2
Physics lecture and experiment

[June 14]

 The students visited Hiroshima University High School, Fukuyama. First, they participated in first year high school foundational physics and second year high school foundational biology classes, where they engaged in calculations and experiments with students from the school. At the lunch session with volunteer pupils, there was so much conversation it seemed they did not intend to eat, and they deepened their friendships further at a workshop that included origami. They also attended an exchange session with all the first−year students (around 200 people), where the participants learned about each other's cultures through presentations introducing culture and schooling.

 During the evening meal, the students experienced making Hiroshima−style okonomiyaki, helping them to understand Japanese culture; they experienced Hiroshima's tasty and enjoyable teppan−yaki and okonomiyaki cultures.

Activity Report Photo 3

[June 15]

 The students visited four facilities in Higashihiroshima, and learned about science in various different fields. At Hiroshima Central Eco Park they toured the latest waste treatment facility → at Hiroshima Prefectural Technology Research Institute Agricultural Technology Research Center they attended a lecture on agricultural technology using AI, etc. and experienced harvesting → at the National Research Institute of Brewing they learned about the differences between sake, beer, and wine from a scientific perspective → at the Hiroshima Astrophysical Science Center they experienced 4D digital space, and then viewed celestial bodies including Mars, Venus, and Albion through the "Kanata Telescope". It was impressive to see them experience fields in which each of them were interested and seriously consider issues and challenges in the Philippines. Notably, the issue of waste is both serious and familiar in the Philippines, so the students were interested in the latest waste treatment technology at Hiroshima Central Eco Park, which does not produce landfill. We were also impressed at their interest in political perspectives, such as considering the benefits of the Japanese government investing in science and technology development, rather than just the scientific side of things.

Activity Report Photo 4
Lecture on agricultural technology using AI, etc. at the Agricultural Technology Research Center

[June 16]

 After learning about peace at the Peace Memorial Museum and Peace Memorial Park, the students visited Miyajima, where they experienced Japanese culture by touring Japanese shrine structures and praying there. This served as an opportunity to learn once again about the tragedy of war and the atomic bomb, and to think about realizing a peaceful world. They were taught about prayer etiquette and about the construction techniques in advance, and gained a deeper sense of the importance of culture and the meaning of preservation by visiting Itsukushima Shrine after understanding its implications and importance.

 After this, they received certificates of completion together with praise from Professor Ikeda at the farewell party/completion ceremony in the evening, and reviewed the program. Professor Seki from Hiroshima University IGS, who is involved in research on the Philippines and is knowledgeable about it, also participated, and once again spoke about studying in Japan and future exchanges.

Activity Report Photo 5
On Miyajima

[June 17]

 We saw the students off at Fukuoka Airport, and the program concluded successfully. This program didn't just promote an experience of Japanese science and technology and encourage international study, it also served as a catalyst for the students to increase their interest in and understanding of each other's cultures through exchange, making it a meaningful endeavor. We offer our heartfelt thanks to everyone involved in the JST Sakura Science Program, and to everyone from the host institutions that gave us their support for these activities.

Activity Report Photo 6
At Fukuoka Airport