Lecture & Concert by Bluesman Steve Gardner

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Born in Mississippi in 1956, Steve Gardner is an accomplished blues musician and photographer, having studied photojournalism at the University of Southern Mississippi and blues from the “School of Hard Knocks.” After working as a photojournalist in the States, he came to Japan, where he has freelanced for Japanese magazines as well as for Time and Newsweek. The interest in the blues that he found in Japan led him to create a picture book on Mississippi and the blues, Rambling Mind (1994). His first CD, “Rambling With The Blues” (2002) is this book’s musical counterpart. He recorded another CD in New Orleans, Louisiana, “Walkin’ the dog” (2008), and his newest release is an album named “Miz Sally’s Yellow Cat Song Book” (2015), which is about–and dedicated to–his mom, Miz Sally. His latest project is Miz Sally’s Yellow Cat Song Book and Dementia Drawings.

Through his music and stories, Steve Gardner will take us on a journey from the world at large to Mississippi and show us where the blues came from — both geographically and spiritually.

EVENT: Open Lecture/ Concert
WHEN: December 10, 2021 (Friday), 3rd Period (13:20~14:50)
WHERE: Aoyama Campus of AGU, Building 11  (Room 1173) & over Zoom
LANGUAGE: English
TARGET AUDIENCE: IE students and any other interested parties who love music

NOTE: Those wishing to participate over Zoom should write to ApplyAoyamaGakuin [AT] gmail.com from their official AGU email account asking for the Zoom details.

Friday IE Core and IE Seminar teachers and their classes–as well as any other teachers and students who can make it–should feel free to participate in this special event.

Here is an article about Steve Gardner that was written by a professor in our department, Wayne Pounds, for the Metropolis magazine. It shows some of Mr. Gardner’s excellent photography and puts his music into historical context.

Click on the graphic (below) to access some fine blues songs about southern cooking, especially the art of barbecue.

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Job Hunting / Career preparation events  (Online via Zoom)

On November 9th and December 1st there will be some online talks given by career support staff from MyNavi that are intended to help 2nd year students prepare for job hunting. The content of the lecture will be the same on both days. Interested students should register via the Student Portal and the Zoom meeting link will be sent to them. See information about it below:

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Talk and performance by Gohei Nishikawa

This will be a talk and performance by a distinguished world-class pianist who has performed in such venues as New York’s Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, as well as–more recently–at the closing ceremony of the Paralympics in Tokyo. Originally from Osaka, Gohei Nishikawa did not begin studying piano until he was fifteen years old, but his speedy progress led to his graduation from the Osaka College of Music and a bold move to the US to pursue a career as a professional pianist.

Not long after moving to the U.S., Gohei Nishikawa began to suffer from a neurological disorder called dystonia, which affects bodily control and movement. At one point, this medical condition made it impossible for him to play the piano. However, through years of painstaking rehabilitation, he gradually regained his ability to play with his right hand, and with two fingers on his left hand. His comeback began in 2008 when he played at an International Music Festival in Italy. In 2009, Mr. Nishikawa achieved a prize at an international piano competition for pianists with disabilities in Vancouver, Canada. In 2012, he had an opportunity to give a speech and performance at Gracie Mansion, the New York City Mayor’s residence.

Five years ago, Gohei Nishikawa returned to Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium as a 7-fingered pianist. Since then, he has been performing, in person and on television, all over the world. In 2015, Gohei’s autobiography was published and NHK made a documentary about his life in 2016. Panasonic chose him for a worldwide TV commercial in 2017. This year you may have seen Gohei Nishikawa performing at the closing ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. Read more about Gohei by referring to this newspaper article about his life and work.

EVENT: Talk and piano concert
TITLE: Connecting people through narrative and music in the best of times and in the worst of times: From Carnegie Hall to the Paralympics
WHEN: November 25, 2021 (Thursday), 3rd Period (13:20~14:50)
WHERE: Aoyama Campus, Room 1134 & over Zoom
LANGUAGE: English (without simultaneous interpretation)
TARGET AUDIENCE: IE students and any other interested parties

NOTE: For the link to the Zoom session, apply (using your official AGU email address) by writing to ApplyAoyamaGakuin [AT] gmail.com . Of course, substitute @ for the [AT]. IE Core and IE Seminar students will be offered the link by their teacher.

Looking to the future…

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Being a Citizen of the World: A talk by André Makino

There are many ways to help others, some small and others monumental. We often hear of the work of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the media, but what is it actually like to work or volunteer for one? How does one prepare for such work? What sorts of intercultural competencies and knowledge of the world are required? When helping others under difficult circumstances, how can one maintain their balance and sustain passion for what they do? The guest speaker, André Makino, will help us answer some of these questions.

As a young man who has an impressive record of accomplishment working with non-profit organizations for the past decade, André Makino will speak about what he has learned through his volunteer experiences, work as an intern, and his role as a field officer for a variety of NGOs that took him from offering the elderly mental support in Tohoku after the Great East Japan Earthquake, to picking up refugees arriving by sea from Turkey, and preparing materials for lessons at schools in the Za’atari refugee camp in Amman, Jordan.

BIO: André Makino is currently the Project Manager of the Japan Iraq Medical Network (JIM-NET) in Erbil, Iraq, where he manages projects to assist cancer-stricken children economically and psychologically, along with programs that assist refugees–especially pregnant women–living in Iraq and Syria. His duties also involve the supervision of Iraqi local staff and three in-hospital school teachers.

EVENT: Open Lecture
WHEN: October 26, 2021 (Tuesday), 3rd Period (13:20~14:50)
WHERE: Aoyama Campus, Honda Auditorium 本多記念館 (17-610) & over Zoom
LANGUAGE: English (without simultaneous interpretation)
TARGET AUDIENCE: IE students and any other interested parties

NOTE: For the link to the Zoom session, apply (using your official AGU email address) by writing to ApplyAoyamaGakuin [AT] gmail.com . Of course, substitute @ for the [AT]. IE Core and IE Seminar students will be offered the link by their teacher.

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Learning about business & companies

A program is being offered that is co-sponsored by Aoyama Gakuin University, Sophia University and Ritsumeikan University.

Many leading companies have collaborated on this program that is meant to teach students about the companies and their business activities.

Students who participate must attend both programs: Program I and Program II. The deadline for registering is July 16th at 1:00 PM. Capacity is limited, so, register as early as possible!

【Program Ⅰ】1-day Orientation
Students choose one day from the following dates:

August 3rd, 2021 10:00-12:00
August 6th, 2021 16:00-18:00
August 12th, 2021 13:00-15:00

【Program Ⅱ】2-day Program

Students are allowed to choose only one of the four options and they must attend the program both days(from 10 AM to 6:30 PM)

Course 1: August 19th and 20th 
The Asahi Shimbun Company and another company (students will be informed as soon as it is decided).

Course 2: August 24th and 25th 
ABeam Consulting Ltd. and Shiseido Company, Limited

Course 3: August 27th and 30th 
Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Company, Limited and LOTTE CO., LTD.

Course 4: September 6th and 7th 
KOKUBU GROUP CORP. and Nippon Life Insurance Company

The deadline for registering is July 16th at 1:00 PM.

Please check the Student Portal to register, under the heading “Sign Up and Confirmation for Special Lectures.”

The maximum allowed for each course is 30 students.
Students can register on a “first come, first served” basis.

[Credits: Many thanks to Deborah Bollinger for passing on this information.]

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Career Café on July 7th  (Online via Zoom)

On July 7th students will have the opportunity to interview Aogaku 4th-year students who received offers to work at various companies, such as the following:

  • ABeam Consulting Ltd.                             
  • VMware Japan                                           
  • KEYENCE                                                    
  • DENTSU DIGITAL
  • The Nisshin Seifun Group
  • NITORI Co., Ltd.
  • PwC Consulting LLC(Only ①first round)

Students can ask questions about job hunting and preparation for companies’ employment selection, etc.

There will be 3 rounds of interviews, and participation in 1, 2 or 3 rounds is possible.

①    15:00~15:40

②    15:50~16:30

③    16:40~17:20

DEADLINE FOR REGISTERING: July 6th, by 5:00 PM
WHERE TO REGISTER: Via the Student Portal, (under the heading “Sign Up and Confirmation for Special Lectures“)

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JALT’s Lifelong Language Learning (LLL) SIG Mini Conference 2021: Lifelong Learning Through an Annual Faculty Development Event

We decided to offer a glimpse into our annual Integrated English Program teachers’ orientation to members of JALT (the Japan Association of Language Teaching). In particular, their Lifelong Language Learning (LLL) and Performance in Education (PIE) Special Interest Groups. This event will co-occur with the morning portion of the faculty development event, three panel discussions made up of seven speakers.

It will take place online for the JALT participants, although the event is hybrid for the Integrated English program teachers who will speak and join as audience members/co-discussants.

EVENT: JALT’s Lifelong Language Learning (LLL) SIG Mini Conference 2021: Lifelong Learning Through an Annual Faculty Development Event
WHEN: April 3, 2021 (Saturday); 10:00~12:10
WHERE: Room 17-810 at the Shibuya Campus of AGU and on Zoom (contact Joseph Dias for Zoom room details)
LANGUAGE: English
TARGET AUDIENCE: IE Program teachers; members of the JALT Lifelong Language Learning and Performance in Education Special Interest Groups

See the attached PDF for full details of the program, including the titles of presentations and bios of the 8 speakers. 

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Talk on climate change activism

Hinako Arao will speak about the role that activism can play in one’s life, by connecting her background as an actress and director in the United States and the UK to her environmental activism. She will speak about how her activism was born, her recent participation in Vice President Al Gore’s Climate Reality Leadership Corps training, and her work as a field organizer for an environmental NGO 350.org Japan, founded by Bill McKibben, an American environmentalist, author, and journalist. Ms. Arao will emphasize how important it is for young people from all over the world to participate in environmental activism because they are the ones who will experience the consequences of the climate crisis the most.

TITLE OF TALK: From Acting to Activism: Performing Social and Environmental Justice
WHEN: December 24, 2019 (Tuesday), 3rd Period (13:20~14:50)
WHERE: Aoyama Campus, Building 17, Room 17-604
LANGUAGE: English
TARGET AUDIENCE: IE students and anyone interested in saving the world

Read the transcript of Greta Thunberg’s moving speech at the UN COP24 climate conference in Poland last year and see the video of it below:

Biography of Hinako Arao:

Hinako Arao is a field organizer for an environmental NGO, 350.org Japan. She was born and raised in Japan, did her undergraduate studies and also spent her 20s working as an actress and a director in the United States and England. After returning to Japan, she has worked as a freelance film and TV producer. She enjoys working together with great groups of people to tackle the climate crisis.

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Successful performance of “Macbeth”

Members of Black Stripe Theater company performed a spirited and riveting adaptation of William Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth’ on December 5th. The audience stayed on the edge of their seats from beginning to end and not a single student was dozing. After the play, the actors graciously remained for a lively Q & A.

Remarkably, the Black Stripe Theater company is simultaneously performing “A Christmas Carol,” “The Hound of the Baskervilles,” and “Macbeth” at venues around Tokyo.

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Hey! The IE Program is on Instagram now!

Find out the latest about IE Program activities and special events by following us on Instagram.

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