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Campus Now

Midsummer Issue (Jul.)

SPECIAL REPORT

Waseda University provides guidance for career formation

A career is more than just an employment history, a professional background and refined skills which all start from selecting an occupation. Instead, a career is the formation of one's life by accumulating a variety of experiences through interaction with society.
With a focus on our Career Center, Waseda University provides students with a variety of opportunities to consider their own career.
This report introduces current actions being taken by our university in order to redefine the concept of a career to allow students to consider their own career.

Part.2 Introduction of Courses

Career-related courses which can be taken at Waseda

This section introduces some of the many courses established by Waseda University in order to support the career formation of students.

Course established by Open Education Center

Cultivation of Professionals-From an Individual Perspective & From a Social Perspective

Mitsuhide Shiraki
Professor, School of Political Science and Economics

Time for considering life planning, including general occupational life

Groups of students discuss their careers

It is clear that work is the central theme when students consider their life plan for after graduation. There are many students who obsess over ability and aptitude as necessary for fulfilling that work. However, when considering a life plan, it is essential to have a broad perspective and correct knowledge. These elements are indispensable for determining how to make use of one's talents in society and how to come to terms with society.

Cultivation of Professionals is a course established through sponsorship by the Open Education Center. I position this course as time for giving one's best effort at life planning, including general occupation life.

The contents of the course can be roughly classified in two parts. The first is a lecture given by a guest speaker. Every term, 5 to 7 speakers active in a broad range of fields and areas are invited to the class to communicate directly with students. These lectures allow students to experience real society. Last year, guest speakers featured individuals such as the manger of a corporate human relations department, staff from international institutions, and even an Olympic gold medalist.

The second part of the course is group discussion which is based on an understanding of guest lectures and textbook reading. Students form groups based on academic year or other criteria. Furthermore, students are placed into pairs where they evaluate each other's debate contents and skill. I believe that this debate time enables students to carefully consider and understand the contents of lectures. At the same time, the pairs hold objective discussion regarding their opinions and positions, thus helping student to improve their discussion skills.

Course established by Open Education Center

Introduction to Corporate Practice: Fundamental Business Thinking

Akira Ishiwatari
Part-Time Lecturer
Tatsunori Matsui
Professor, Faculty of Human Sciences

Absorb/exercise business skills and improve business thinking

Holding class via Course@Navi

Business thinking consists of business skills such as understanding, perception, cogitation and persuasion, all of which are necessary for solving problems. In order to become a working professional, students need more than just knowledge or academic records during their time at university. They refine their attitude and spirit of self-improvement (business mind) towards work. Furthermore, they must improve their business thinking by constantly absorbing and exercising business skills are useful for work.

The contents of this course are practical instead of academic, and therefore no real system exists for the contents. I want students to study concepts which will be useful as a working member of society. Such concepts include ways of viewing the corporate environment, the mechanisms of management, and attitudes and skills required from businesspeople. Another concept is the ability to acquire logical thinking skills and problem-solving skills which must be exercised when conducting business. Furthermore, I try to incorporate skills which can also be used while studying at university. Such skills include methods for organizing problems and indentifying the starting point for solutions.

Currently, businesspeople are required to possess skills for improving problem-solving ability and for increasing communication ability. Corporations are no longer satisfied with businesspeople that possess only the basic menu of logical thinking and presentation skills. Instead, emphasis is placed on creative thinking and raw intelligence.

Careers have distinct stages. Immediately after entering society is the "independence stage." Independence refers to the ability of thinking independently and logically without relying excessively on other people or organizations, as wells as taking initiative and responsibility for work. Next is the "autonomy stage." Autonomy is a type of principle, philosophy, aesthetic or style. It refers to maintaining a steady course while making individual judgments which are based on a personal code. Autonomy is the crux of a strong career. After passing through the "autonomy stage," professional will enter the "self-realization stage" which consists of career improvement. In this way, I believe that a career is a practical design or navigation chart for the mission that each individual must fulfill in business society where we spend the greater part of life.

Course established by Open Education Center

Women's Career Creation Course (Sponsored by Ernst & Young ShinNihon LLC)

Hideo Namiki
Professor, Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences
Tetsuya Yaguchi
Professor, Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences
Mariko Tamura
Part-Time Lecturer

Encouraging students to create a reserve of strength for difficult times

Learning from professionals active on the frontline of business

Currently, the career style of woman is become increasingly diversified. Each woman creates a career while utilizing her individual skills.

In the Women's Career Creation Course, we invite leading women professionals to act as guest speakers. These speakers discuss the process of forming their own career. Presenting role models helps students to understanding the current status and future of career women, to grasp indications of changing times, and to create their own future image. We strive to invite speakers from a wide range of different professions, backgrounds and ages. This allows students to experience both similarities between career woman and differences due to factors such as age. The course includes a Q&A session which generates even deeper discussion. We always try to show the connection individual experience and information such as the background of a certain period.

Through this course, we want students to create a reserve of strength for difficult times. This reserve can be described as intellectual property. If graduating students have a reserve of experience which they can refer to during difficulties in business society, then they will have a different way of dealing with problems. It is important to notice the similarities between issues discussed in class and actual issues encountered in the work force. Furthermore, upon such realization, it is essential for students to draw upon the reserve of knowledge accumulated through past studies. Such ability will be a major factor in solving problems.

In this course, we expect students to fill their reserve with large amounts of data which will be useful when searching for and designing their own career.

Course established by Open Education Center

News Changes Society-Theory of Reporting Process (Commemorative course of the Waseda Journalism Award in Memory of Ishibashi Tanzan)

Tatsuro Hanada
Professor, Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences

Learning onsite practices from leading journalists

Lectures by journalists from various fields.

This course uses the news reporting process as a perspective to address the following questions: What is journalism? What is the social role of journalism? What makes for outstanding journalism? What are journalists and what kind of work do they do?

In class, students listen to and discuss lectures given directly by current prominent journalists. Students are able to experience current journalism through interaction with actual journalist. Therefore, I want students to consider what kind of work is produced by journalists, as well as the reporting process and consciousness behind that work.

The course truly provides students with an opportunity to study from leading journalists. Speakers include recipients of last year's Waseda Journalism Award in Memory of Ishibashi Tanzan, journalists who conduct traditional journalism, speakers who address recent journalism topics, and individuals who have had a major impact on journalism.

I want students to observe on a daily basis the type of journalism conducted in media. Such observation is possible by carefully reading newspapers and magazines, watching television news and documentaries, reading non-fiction books and going to movies. Also, I would like students to engage seriously in each class, making the most of the unique experience offered by the different speakers. I hope that students will deepen their understanding of journalism and journalists, and that the knowledge gained will be useful when determining their future and career paths.

I believe that occupation and profession are the basis for a career. If this basis is not firmly established, then a career will be unstable. I want students to grasp and understand the social significance of a profession, and then to consider the development of a personal professional background.

Graduation Preparatory Program: Creating post-graduate vision and refining skills which lead to a career

This is program started from the 2010 academic year and was established by the Open Education Center. The program targets 4th year students who will soon graduate, and seeks to develop and refine the skills necessary for performing in business society. The Businessperson Practical Preparatory Course is composed of the following four categories: social skills, business kills, compliance/laws and internships. Students have the opportunity to study presentation skills, language skills and communication ability.

Furthermore, the Business Internship Course is a non-credit paid course for students who wish to gain deeper knowledge. The course consists mainly of practical exercises enabling students to study logical thinking and writing.