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Messages from the graduates

Report on the Symposium for the School of Architecture 「Architectural education with Kyoto University Spirit – Personnel whom enterprise are expected for」

On October 21, 2006, a Symposium for the School of Architecture titled 「Architectural Education with Kyoto University Spirit – Personnel whom enterprise are expected for」 was held in the Katsura Hall in the B-Cluster of Katsura Campus, with more than 200 participants including the current students, the graduates and the teaching staffs. It was aimed for a few objectives such as to create the chance for gathering the current students and graduates from the School of Architecture; to provide a forum for the graduates to introduce practice life in companies and their career paths; to let the graduates express their expectation towards the School's education; to make an occasion for the current students to deepen mutual communication with the graduates by raising enquiries and comments so as to redefine their current undergraduate life and the future. Moreover, it was an opportunity to hear voices from the personnel of graduates'places of employment in regards to our education policy. These comments became a part of the external assessment for the University's self-assessment basis. To organize such a forum for deepening the mutual communication among the current students and the OBs was firstly attempted since the School of Architecture was founded. The forum was prepared by 21 current students, and was marked as a significant event.

On this brisk fall day, many graduates from afar and a rush of current students from the Yoshida Campus came over to attend. The forum was held in the Katsura Hall and started at 1:30 in the afternoon. There were 88 undergraduates, 42 post-graduates, 45 graduates and 31 teaching faculties who all together almost packed the hall.

Associate Professor Kiyoko Kanki, as the host, gave the opening speech, and Professor Takewaki, the Dean of the School of Architecture addressed the keynote of the symposium. The dean also introduced the recent developments of the School upon the Graduate School Strategic Reform, and the relocation of the School facilities within the Yoshida Campus associated with the diversion to the Katsura Campus. Moreover, it was criticized the insufficient of all-around education under the nowadays "Relaxed Education" despites its pros and cons, and the degrading oral presentation skills among the young students caused by the advancing communication devices which eliminate the frequency of face to face communication. Under this critical background, the dean called for the graduates' suggestions and comments on how to keep the brand of Kyoto University.

Then, we proceeded to the speeches from the graduates. Among the various building related enterprise of various business sectors, we received the talks from those graduates working in the five general (construction) contractors firms, which employ the most numbers of our graduates. They are Mr. Akihisa Miwa (Obayashi Corporation, 1974 graduate), Mr. Takeshi Kayano (Kajima Corporation, 1984 graduate), Mr. Yasumasa Akiyama (Shimizu Corporation, 1983 graduate), Mr. Masaaki Omura (Shimizu Corporation, 1982 graduate), Mr. Kyoji Isobe (Taisei Corporation, 1994 graduate) and Mr. Tetsuo Harada (Takenaka Corporation, 1984 graduate).

We were given speeches with various topics ranging from the introduction of various departments running in the corporations such as production departments, design departments and sales departments to the characteristics of respective corporations, the achievement of our national building industry, the career paths together with the happiness and feeling of accomplishment gained in the daily works. Afterwards, three current master students raised their queries on the speakers' way of life during their school days, the kind of staff whom the corporation is looking for, and the mode of working in these corporations. In response to the students' questions, the graduates expected the students of Kyoto University not only to master the basic architectural knowledge, but also to develop their communication capability and the defiant quality for widening the possibility of architectural design in the new era. In addition, that these graduates strongly demanded the cultivation of the richness of humanity from the students was the most impressing. Finally, Professor Junzo Munemoto gave his comments regarding how to implement the raised topics in the education scene and the quest for reviewing the policy with reference to the images inspired by the graduates' speeches, as the summary to the forum.

After the forum section, we moved to the C-cluster for laboratories and facilities tour. At dusk, the convivial party was held and our guests crowded the central courtyard. The mutual communication among the graduated OBs and the current students were deepened and the symposium was adjourned.