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Four visitors from Europe observe and teach new VIBE Program

With substantial aid from the European Union and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), J. F. Oberlin University has further developed its existing partnership with the Rotterdam Business School into a new business-related program, the VIBE Program, in partnership with two new institutions: the University of Eastern Finland and Meiji University. In this new program, the four universities are exchanging professors and students, with the aim of learning about each other's educational methods, such as seminar-style lectures in Japan and project-based learning in EU countries.

Three professors and one administrator—Leon Wolfs and Nicolette Hougee from Rotterdam Business School and Christina Piel and Mirjami Ikonen from the University of Eastern Finland—arrived at J. F. Oberlin on Monday, May 11. For the next four days, they visited classes, delivered guest lectures to the ten students currently enrolled in the VIBE Program, participated in meetings concerning the organization of the program, and visited companies in the Tokyo area. They also met with President Takayasu Mitani and Vice-president Hiroaki Hatayama.

Professor Hougee commented, “Our visit to J. F. Oberlin was very inspiring. We noticed that even though we all have different cultural backgrounds and traditions, we share one common goal and that is to learn from each other so that we can further shape and improve the VIBE Program. Creating understanding is vital for achieving this goal.”

Ms. Piel, the Coordinator for International Affairs at the University of Eastern Finland, added, “The four days at J.F. Oberlin University were unforgettable and very interesting in terms of mutual learning, which is one of the goals of the VIBE Program. The VIBE students seemed very motivated and active, and I’m sure they will have an unforgettable experience when they spend a semester in Finland or Holland.”

The four VIBE Program visitors met with President Mitani (front row, second from left)
and other J. F. Oberlin professors and administrators.