Vice Chairperson of ICT Chamber and 5 start-ups highly impressed by KIC’s activities

2019/1/17

The 5 chief executive officers from the 5 start-ups and the vice president of ICT chamber from Rwanda, Africa visited KIC on January 23rd, 2019.

Mr. Atsushi Yamanaka, Adjunct Associate Professor of KIC, is the project leader of “The ICT Innovation Ecosystem Strengthening Project” supported by Japan Overseas Cooperation Agency (JICA) in Rwanda which aims to support start-ups.

This time, the 5 chief executive officers from the 5 start-ups in Rwanda who were chosen by the program related to “The ICT Innovation Ecosystem Strengthening Project”, and Mr. Jimmy Rutabingwa, Vice Chairperson of ICT Chamber, visited Japan. During this time, they visited KIC, which is collaborating with Rwanda through utilizing ICT as a unique educational tool.

KIC introduced our activities regarding Swift-Xi Inc. which was established collaboration with Swift Engineering Inc. - an aerospace company based in California, USA, and supported by Kobe City, as well as Kobe Denshi Vocational College as our sister school. The 5 chief executive officers exchanged opinions with the international students in the ICT Innovator course from Rwanda.

The 5 chief executive officers from the 5 start-ups in Rwanda received a detailed explanation from each section, and they had many questions for the teachers.

Mr. Igiraneza Origene, CEO of O’genius Priority Ltd., as one of the start-ups who gives services a digital education platform that helps students to understand science and mathematics deeply through simulations and animations that put them in virtual reality, took a lecture in the Web Engineer Course of Kobe Denshi Vocational College. After he went back to his home country, he sent us message saying “I was impressed by the lecture and student’s products. The visiting program was very beneficial for us. We want to continue our conversation, and let’s grow our friendship and collaboration as well as creating some partnership.”

The visiting program was productive not only for the 5 start-ups in Rwanda but also KIC. The collaboration and cooperation with Rwanda is expected to significantly develop in the future.

Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice-president of KIC, supported the “KOBE STARTUP AFRICA in Rwanda”

2019/1/17

On the January 19th, 2018, Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice-president of KIC, gave a lecture for the trainees from some universities who were sent to Rwanda through the program “KOBE STARTUP AFRICA in Rwanda” (Link here) which is conducted under the auspices of Kobe city.

“KOBE STARTUP AFRICA in Rwanda” is a training program supported by Kobe city and Tiger Mov, Inc. which is a Japanese youth development startup founded in 2016 with the mission of “creating next generation leaders”. The program aims to let the trainees acquire an “entrepreneur’s mind” through the experiences of start-ups in Rwanda which has a growing IT market, as well as many other issues to tackle.

In the pre-training of the program, Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice-president of KIC, gave a lecture as a pioneer of start-ups in Rwanda for the trainees in KIC, which has cooperated with African countries like Rwanda through ICT since a little less than 10 years ago.

In the lecture, he explained what KIC has done with Rwanda, as well as what Swift-Xi Inc., his start-up, has contributed. In addition, he stated “My start-up in Rwanda has just begun. We have the same aspirations. Let's do our best together” to the trainees.

The trainees also recieved information about African society with international students in the Innovator course from Africa. And the international students gave feedback on the start-up plans by the trainees. The discussion was quite lively through to the end.

The trainees stay in Rwanda for 2 weeks. They research their original business plans for solving problems in Rwanda, experience the emerging market which is growing rapidly, develop relationships with local entrepreneurs or venture capitalists through the experiences of visiting some places like markets or coffee plantations, participate in workshops collaborated with local companies, develop business plans, and give final presentations.

Please watch out for our international activities in collaboration with local governments.

Swift-Xi Inc. participated in an event on the 24th Memorial Day of the South Hyogo Earthquake (Great Hanshin Awaji Earthquake) in Kobe.

2019/1/17

Swift-Xi Inc. (Mr. Hiro Matsushita, CHAIRMAN & CEO) which was established in collaboration with Swift Engineering Inc. - an aerospace company based in California, USA, and supported by Kobe City, participated in an event on the 24th Memorial Day of the South Hyogo Earthquake (Great Hanshin Awaji Earthquake) in Kobe on January 17th, 2019.

Swift-Xi Inc. was able to perform a successful demo flight of the drone “Swift020” model which is a vertical takeoff and landing aircraft and fully autonomous turnkey solution, with took place at the southern area of Meriken Park in Kobe, Japan on the July 2018. In addition, we participated in the International Industrial Fair 2018 Kobe which is the largest industrial fair in West Japan, in September, 2018. Gradually, the public is becoming more aware of us.

The event on the 24th Memorial Day of the South Hyogo Earthquake (Great Hanshin Awaji Earthquake) was held to raise awareness of disaster prevention and to share the lessons and knowhow gained from experiences with the world. At the event area, there was a memorial walking event, emergency drill, and many booths for exhibitions on disaster prevention, which Swift-Xi Inc. also participated in.

Many visitors from not only government departments concerning disaster prevention, but also companies which were interested in our products, and even children who were very curious about the drone, visited our booth. They showed great interest in the Swift020 and its successor model.

Swift-Xi Inc. and KIC will satisfy the needs of any disaster prevention initiative through our products and research activities.

Mr. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, was highly impressed by KIC’s actions

2019/1/17

Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice President of KIC, joined a meeting that was sponsored by the Japanese government when Mr. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, visited Japan.
-From meeting with Mr. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda to joining to the welcoming dinners at the Official Residence of the Prime Minister -

Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice President of KIC, was invited to the meeting and events that were sponsored by the Japanese government when Mr. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, Chairman of African Union, visited Japan on January 8th, 2019.

Mr. Paul Kagame and his wife met with the Emperor and Empress in the afternoon. After that they had a meeting with Mr. Kizo Hisamoto, Mayor of Kobe City, Mr. Hiro Matsushita, Chairman and CEO of Swift-Xi Inc., and Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice President of KIC.

On the Rwanda side, the Foreign Minister, the Minister of Finance, the Minister of ICT and Innovation, the Minister of Infrastructure, the Mayor of Kigali City and the Ambassador of Japan to Rwanda, participated with Mr. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda. The meeting with key members who are in positions which play a pivotal role in the state of Rwanda was realized.

In the meeting with Mr. Paul Kagame, Mr. Kenji Fukuoka talked to him about what KIC has been doing with Rwanda through the ABE initiative as well as how KIC is strengthening cooperation with African countries like Rwanda for the future.
Mr. Paul Kagame responded positively, stating “Let’s begin all the activities we talked about today!” He showed a positive attitude to not only strengthening cooperation between KIC and Rwanda but also to strengthening economic exchanges between Kobe city and Rwanda.

KIC has cooperated with African countries like Rwanda through ICT since a little less than 10 years ago. Today’s meeting with Mr. Paul Kagame was one of KIC’s many actions.

In the evening following the meeting, the welcoming dinner for Mr. Paul Kagame and his wife was held at the Official Residence of Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan. Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice President of KIC, was invited as a representative from the Japanese educational section because KIC has been contributing to developing human resources for Rwanda. He exchanged opinions with Mr. Shinzo Abe and Mr. Paul Kagame regarding future plans for developing human resources for Rwanda while enjoying dinner.

Mr. Shinzo Abe and Mr. Paul Kagame mentioned and praised our many actions and achievements on such sequence of events.

We are reassured that “Developing Human Resources” is an essential factor for the partnership between Japan and Rwanda, and it is our mission.
We will continue our progress.

KIC has signed a MoU with Daimaru Matsuzakaya Department Store Kobe branch

2019/1/18

KIC has signed a MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Daimaru Matsuzakaya Department Store Kobe branch for creating a cooperative relationship in the ICT field. The MoU aims to understand what customers need, improve the quality of customer services, and invigorate local communities in Kobe. Our signing ceremony for the MoU was held on January 15th, 2019.

Daimaru Department Store (est. 1717), as well as Matsuzakaya Department Store (est. 1611), had both been established as drapery stores, and had turned their business into the tradition ever since their foundations. Daimaru Matsuzakaya Department Store has been deeply loved by numerous customers as a long-established department store representing Japan.

We have been engaging in PBL (Project Based Learning) in cooperation with various local companies since KIC started in 2005. This MoU is very important for all students in KIC because we can create opportunities for solving problems practically by utilizing ICT in the real world.

Mr. Kenji Fukuoka, Vice-President of KIC, stated that “I do not know when new values will be born or what will be born, but at our university not only Japanese but also foreign students are enrolled from diverse nationalities, including African nations. I would like to contribute to solving problems from various perspectives.”

We play a more important role for not only developing Africa but also invigorating local communities in Kobe.

Ms. Paula Ingabire, Minister of Ministry of ICT and Innovation, visited KIC

2019/1/19

Ms. Paula Ingabire, Minister of Ministry of ICT and Innovation, Mr. Antoine Sebera, Government Chief Innovation Officer of RISA (Rwanda Information Society Authority), Mr. Alex Ntale, CEO of ICT Chamber, and some members from Rwanda visited KIC on January 11th, 2019.

KIC has been training students from Rwanda and sending them back as highly skilled ICT personnel or as entrepreneurs.
KIC has signed a MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Rwanda Ministry of ICT for creating a cooperative relationship in the development of human resources and industries because the achievement of "ICT Human Resource Development Project in Kigali, Rwanda," which has been entrusted business from JICA since October 2017, was highly evaluated.

At this time, KIC gave a presentation on what we have been doing for Africa, like in Rwanda, and talked about the gaming department from Kobe Denshi vocational school and held a tour of both of KIC and Kobe Denshi vocational school. Ms. Paula Ingabire, Minister of Ministry of ICT and Innovation, was impressed, and mentioned that “We want to have same education system even in Rwanda.” We recognized again that Rwanda also needs our cooperation from not only KIC but also Kobe Denshi vocational school.

They also participated in a meeting with students from Rwanda as well as a welcome event. Ms. Paula Ingabire, Minister of Ministry of ICT and Innovation, applauded the great effort from the students. It was good opportunity for them.
KIC will continue to promote the development ICT human resources in cooperation with Rwanda.

The event “Kagami Biraki 2019” was held

2019/1/25

“Kagami Biraki”, one of the Japanese traditional events for the new year was held in KIC at lunch time on January 17th, 2019. “Kagami Biraki” means the cutting of New Year's Mochi (rice-cakes).

It was held to enable ICT Innovator Course students to experience traditional culture in Japan. The students from the ICT Professional Course and teachers joined in too. It was a very lively and diverse party.

Some of the students had trouble using chopsticks, but they seemed to enjoy the Japanese tradition of eating “Isobe Mochi (fried rice-cakes covered in soy sauce and wrapped in dried seaweed)”.

About 4 months has passed since M1 students in the ICT Innovator Course came to Japan. They have gotten used to use chopsticks little by little. They enjoyed eating the rice-cakes.

Digital Cooperation Talks: Akaliza Keza Ntwari

2019/1/27

Ms. Akaliza Keza Ntwari, who graduated from the KIC Innovator course in September, 2016, was appointed as a member of the High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation, which was established by United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, to advance a dialogue on strengthening international cooperation in the digital age.

She was interviewed by the Digital Cooperation.

The question is “Why is cooperation necessary in the digital age?”

Click here to watch the video

Bangladesh ODA Report Vol.11: “The national project is starting up - The campaign for universities was a great success”

2019/2/1

The technical aid project “ICT Human Resources Development Targeting the Japan Market” which KIC has been entrusted from JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) in Bangladesh, was started by Mr. Miyamoto, KIC extraordinary associate professor from July, 2017.

The project aims to develop ICT human resources and increase the pass rate of the ITEE (Information Technology Engineers Examination) in Bangladesh.
In the results of ITEE, which was held in March, 2018, some of the examinees in Bangladesh held 1st and 3rd places from among all examinees from the 7 countries (Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar, Malaysia, Mongol, and Bangladesh).

In the results of the recent ITEE which was held in autumn 2018, an examinee in Bangladesh held 1st place among all examinees from the Asian countries again. Moreover, we achieved the largest number of passers ever in the ITEE at 36.

In November, 2018, it was decided to advance this project to a national level in Bangladesh as the results of the project were highly commended by the Bangladesh national government.

Unfortunately, the activities of the project have been temporarily suspended due to the general election issue in Bangladesh. But, this time, Mr. Miyamoto, KIC extraordinary associate professor made the 8th visit (Period: February 16th to 24th) to conduct the following;

  1. GIVING A REPORT OF PROJECT RESULTS FOR JICA BANGLADESH OFFICE

  2. REQUEST FOR COOPERATION TO PRAIVATE COMPANIES

  1. DISCUSSION WITH NATIONAL GOVERNMENT FOR SUGGESTING CONCRETE ACTIVITY PLANS AND ENCOURAGING A BUDGET EXECUTION

    Mr. Miyamoto suggested repeatedly to the Bangladesh national government about the tentative plan of “120 Hours Training in 12 Universities” for increasing passers of the ITEE, as well as improving the budget and developing the Bengalese trainers who support the sustainable and autonomous system of ICT Human Resources Development. At the conference, participants came from universities, and they were able to have an active exchange of opinions.

  2. HOLDING A CAMPAIGN FOR UNIVERSITIES TO TAKE “ITEE”

    Mr. Miyamoto visited two universities in Dhaka. He introduced an example of activities of the trainees in the project in Japanese companies. He also mentioned the concrete route of how the trainees of the project can work actively in Japan. His suggestions highly attracted the students in universities.

According to Mr. Miyamoto, the project gives steady results, and high attention is focused on the project in Bangladesh. On the other hand, there are some problems of the real ownership by Bengalese of the project, the objective activities of trainers, the cooperation system by private companies, and sustainable supplies of educational materials.

Please see our project.

Bangladesh ODA Report Vol.12:”The result of project appeared in the national press”

2019/4/1

The technical aid project “ICT Human Resources Development Targeting the Japan Market” which KIC has been entrusted from JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) in Bangladesh, was started by Mr. Miyamoto, KIC extraordinary associate professor since July, 2017.
The project was decided to advance this project to a national level in Bangladesh on the November, 2018 as the results of the project were highly commended by the Bangladesh national government for establishing the system of independent human resource development, making a bridge between the private companies in Bangladesh and the private companies in Japan.

He also conducted the following;
1. PARTICIPATION TO “SoftExpo 2019” WHICH IS THE LARGEST IT EXPO IN BANGLADESH
2. HOLDING A CAMPAIGN FOR UNIVERSITIES TO TAKE “ITEE”
SoftExpo 2019」では商業大臣も出席する中、ITEE合格者セレモニーが盛大に執り行われました。 In the “SoftExpo 2019” which the minister of commerce participated, the ceremony for ITEE passers was held successfully. The over half of 56 ITEE passers who are supported by our project participated in the ceremony. They received trophies one by one. This ceremony appeared in the national press. Therefore our project became widely recognized for even the staff of government and civics after showing up in the press.

3. CONSULTING TO PRIVATE COMPANY BELONGING TO IT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Mr. Miyamoto visited 6 universities for holding a campaign for ITEE. He introduced about need to pass ITEE for local students who aim to work in Japan. It attracted a lot of attention. He also advised regarding utilizing PR tools for private companies in Bangladesh to sign a contract with Japanese private companies in “Japan IT Week 2019” which is held on the May, 2019 in TokyoBigSight, Japan.
Our project has produced many results. But there will continue to be some problems until Bangladeshi can manage the project on their own. Therefore persistent efforts are needed continuously.

Practice of Creativity Development -Ms. Misato Kinouchi's Workshop was held for ICT

2019/4/2

Kobe Institute of Computing / Graduate School of Technology offers not only ICT curriculums, but also various curriculums and experiences for our students.
In the “Practice of Creativity Development” for ICT Innovator course M1, the lecturer is Dr. Toshiki Sumitani, and is one of the foundation subjects at KIC. We supply unique methods and experiences for students to contribute to creativity development through inviting various guest lecturers within all the 15 lessons of the course.

In the lesson on April 2nd, 2019, Ms. Misato Kinouchi, the author of “Sekai no Hatemade Chocolate” which is a famous book in Japan, and Chocolate buyer, held a workshop about “Clinical Art” sequentially last year. For more detail of “Clinical Art” or her workshop, please read a past article.
The international students and Japanese students from ICT Innovator course and Professional course, and even our faculties and staffs participated in the workshop. They drew zigzag lines, spiral lines, and dots with strong and weak on white papers using by colorful oil pastels.

This workshop has no rules. Rubbing by hands, scratching by chopsticks, making new colors by mixing deferent colors…participant’s memory and desired to be left in the colorful abstract painting is completed by moving hands with their just senses.
One of international students from Africa showed me his strong work with excitement after the workshop. He said “I drew the picture with imaging my mother country and Japan as my second country. I really enjoyed this workshop!” Even he still cannot speak Japanese well. However he could learn something by his sense over the language.
KIC gives opportunities to learn about not only technologies, but also it connects to value creation.

International students from KIC drew flower pictures in “INFIORATA KOBE KITANOZAKA 2019”

2019/4/27-29

At the present time, the event, which has become a distinctive feature of Kobe in spring, has spread to various places in Kobe. KIC has also participated in making flower pictures with local residents for 4 consecutive years since 2016 including this year. ”INFIORATA” means “To spread flowers all over a surface” in Italian. This event has been held across cities in Europe, which is well known for drawing pictures using flowers on roads or in plazas. In the case of Kobe, it started in the Sannomiya area in 1997 for a remembrance event for the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake of 1995.

.“INFIORATA KOBE KITANOZAKA 2019” was held from April 27th to 29th. The theme was sightseeing spots in Kobe”. 10 teams including us participated in this event. Our colorful flower carpet expressed the popular sightseeing spots of Kobe. It delighted people's eyes who visited Kitanozaka area. Our international students who have diversity of races and various cultures made the original flower carpet. They made a colorful carpet with a bird's-eye view of the sea from the summit of Rokkosan hill in Kobe city. They also expressed beautiful mountains and the sea of Kobe city using colorful tulip petals, stalks, and woodchips. Although sometimes s strong wind blew that day, our students, staff, and their families cooperated with neighboring residents and volunteer students from Kobe City University of Foreign Studies. They painted using flowers in a relaxed environment.


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