University of Lethbridge strengthens links to Japan with new partnership

The University of Lethbridge extended their 35-year history with Japan Wednesday.

The university collaborated with Hokkai-Gakuen University through the signing of a number of agreements, including a new dual degree program with Gakushuin Women’s College.

The University’s associate dean of the faculty of arts and science, Dr. Jackie Rice, said the relationship allows students to receive an education using the best of both worlds.

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    “The initiative will build on the success of our relationship with Gakushuin Women’s College, offering an opportunity for their students to complete the first stage of their schooling in Japan, then transition to the U of L to experience the culture and opportunities here, before finally going back to Japan to complete their Gakushuin degree,” Rice said.

    “This is a unique opportunity, and it provides a structure to support a novel experience outside of their own culture while allowing them to also build their academic career.”

    The program is a pilot project through the faculty of arts and science that will enroll one student in fall 2016, followed by up to five students beginning in fall 2017.

    This particular partnership enables students to pursue co-related studies at both the U of L and Gakushuin, and if the student is successful, a degree from both institutions will be awarded.

    The dual degree program partnership with Gakushuin Women’s College is the first of its kind for the University of Lethbridge, and is the fifth partnership overall between the two since March 2014.

    The university also inked three new agreements with long-time partner Hokkai-Gakuen University.

    University of Lethbridge president Dr. Mike Mahon said the new trio of programs will extend the exchange programs and provide both faculty and students the opportunity to develop culturally and internationally.

    “The relationship we have with Hokkai-Gakuen, dating back to 1981, is a very significant part of the U of L’s history,” Mahon said.

    “The exchanges our students and faculty members have been able to participate in have provided invaluable experiences, promoted cross-cultural understanding and really fostered a sense of global citizenship on campus.”

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