Graduate School UGM and the Graduate School of Tohoku University, Japan collaborate in a student exchange program. This alliance enables both parties to work together in research and student exchanges program. The plan is every student of both universities has the opportunity to do an exchange program for two semesters each year. Memorandum of cooperation was signed by the Deputy Director of the Graduate School, Prof. Ir. Suryo Purnomo, MASC., Ph.D., and Prof. Hiro Sato Ph.D from Tohoku University in Japan, recently.
Suryo Purnomo said that this cooperation will provide an opportunity for two students from Graduate School of Religious and Cross-cultural Studies to study and do research in both countries every year. “For graduate students who have a basic proficiency in Japanese, these opportunities will be more wide open,” said Suryo, Thursday (4/8).
In addition, Suryo added that this cooperation opens opportunities for students of Religious and Cross Cultural Studies (CRCS) UGM to perform religious studies in Japan. “This course will be of great benefit for the students, especially for those who are interested in doing research on Japan,” he explained.
The cooperation between the Graduate School UGM and the University of Tohoku actually began in 2015 in the form of research and teaching. Since the last two years, said Dr. Suhadi from CRCS, there were many research cooperations in the field of religious studies and disasters held in Indonesia and Japan. In fact, one of the professors from Tohoku, Dr. Toshiaki Kimura, has become one of the lecturers of “Science, Religion and Disaster” at CRCS.
Dr. Toshiaki Kimura of Religious Studies Program explained that Tohoku University is one of four universities that have Religious Studies programs. According to the man, the program began after demands from Japanese students because it is considered important, especially in responding to disasters. Moreover, Japan is one country with a high level of disasters, so the presence of religion in Japan was very beneficial to disaster victims. “The presence of scholars of religious studies can help the victims to see the disaster on the spiritual side,” said Kimura.