Ignite:Institute for Glocal Network Innovation in Technology Education

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Greeting from the Director of the IGNITE

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As the progress of globalization in economy and information, globally engaged human resource with international competencies is required in technological science field. Likewise, higher education requires an internationalized educational environment and enhanced research facilities through cooperation with global research institutes/organizations. Toyohashi University of Technology (Toyohashi Tech) has cooperated with international universities worldwide, especially in ASEAN, to accomplish university internationalization. In October 2013, the Institute for Global Network Innovation in Technology Education (IGNITE) was established and aimed to restructure international institutions to further foster internationalization at Toyohashi Tech.

IGNITE accelerates the university’s globalization and human resources, and it is formulated with the Center for International Relations (CIR), the International Cooperation Center for Engineering Education Development (ICCEED), the Center for International Education (CIE), and the Overseas education base TUT-USM Penang. CIR promotes the acceptance of international students, ICCEED activates international cooperation activities, the newly established CIE develops international education programs primarily for Japanese students, and TUT-USM Penang cultivates globally engaged engineers. IGNITE intends to improve international competencies of Toyohashi Tech and cultivate global human resources.

TUT-USM Penang, which was established on December 4, 2013, is the first overseas education base to be managed by a national university cooperation in Japan. It is an implementation of the “National University Reform Enhancement Promotion Project,” which was organized by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MEXT) of Japan. The base is established in Penang, Malaysia, an emerging country that will foster students who possess a global mindset and technological prowess. In addition, students will be sent to Penang as “international students.” Therefore, TUT-USM Penang has the potential to be a leading model of global education for Japanese students.

To survive intense international competition, Japanese universities must have competencies to survive in the global flow. This is why we need to create an environment where competing on a global stage is not special, but ubiquitous. To create this kind of environment, a trigger and an organization that can maintain it is needed. Ignite is defined as “to start burning or set on fire.” IGNITE aims to establish a global platform for Toyohashi Tech, and Japanese higher education will be the fuel to start that process.

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