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Ship Inspector-General, Maritime Bureau, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure
It was 90 years ago in 1912 when the British passenger ship, "Titanic", sank in the North Atlantic Ocean after colliding with an iceberg, which resulted in losses of about 1,500 human lives. Since then, various international conventions were established and enforced to ensure safety of ships. Yet, serious marine accidents involving tankers, bulkers, etc. still continue to occur. The IMO has established legitimate standards, and ships install various safety equipments which introduce art technology on board. However, the safety of ships cannot be ensured unless people who implement these standards as well as people and organizations that operate ships are competent and reliable. In a consequence, there is a strong clamor for solid implementation of the standards and reinforcement of software requirement recently. In anticipation of the needs in times to come, WMU was established for the purpose of developing maritime talents. I hope that those who receive education at WMU cooperate with each other in raising people in various parts of the world, and contribute to maritime safety. Their success will also be a great pleasure for Japan, which is, under the cooperation of The Nippon Foundation, contributing to the operation of WMU, which is entrusted with an important mission. We are all ready to join forces as members of the WMU Sasakawa Fellows' Network.
||YEE Lee Chnua
1998097, MET, Malaysia
Politeknik Ungku Omar (PUO) in Ipoh, West Malaysia, was established in 1969. In 1972, under the Colombo Plan, the Marine Engineering Diploma Course was set up to train engineering personnel to man Malaysian ships.
PUO is a higher education technical institute reporting to the Technical and Vocational Division of the Ministry of Education in Malaysia. Under the Colombo Plan, the Japanese Government provided five advisors and equipment, while the Malaysian Government provided the premises, workshops, local teaching staff, additional equipment and operating budget.
The Japanese Government stopped sending advisors in 1984, but assistance in the way of machinery spare parts and technical know-how has continued from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) until today. This is considered as one of the successful JICA's projects.
In 1997, Sasakawa Peace Foundation, Japan funded one lecturer from PUG to pursue MSc. Maritime Education and Training at WMU, Sweden. The following year, another lecturer from PUO also funded by Tokyo Foundation pursued the same course.
In 2001, JICA sent a senior volunteer to PUO, Marine Engineering Department as an advisor. The great contribution of Governmental and Non-Governmental Organizations from Japan has allowed the Marine Engineering Diploma Course to keep up with the high technology maritime industry.
2002011, MA, Japan
WMU has given me the ability to understand and the flexibility to adapt to changing international maritime issues, allowing me to fulfill my responsibilities for maritime development and to improve international co-operation.
The enjoyment and difficulties of living in a multi-cultural environment has made me realize how important it is for countries to live in harmony, with so many diversified cultures, ideologies and customs.
My memory of the reunion of graduates at the WMU Japan Sasakawa Fellows Forum last year has left a deep impression, especially President Sasakawa's keynote speech. The concept of a human network is what I have been trying to achieve during my two years' stay in Malmö. In this divided world, it is important to cherish being here together by building friendships among all students. Since the maritime industry is international, it is through shipping that all people can come closer to each other. We students at WMU all wish to cooperate in the future.
After graduation, I will work as a lecturer at the Japan Coast Guard Academy. I hope to pass on to the cadets the new ideas and knowledge I have gained at WMU to help them grasp and cater to the world trends in the maritime industry.
MET (N) 2002044, Japan
Since the establishment of the WMU in 1983, the Swedish
city of Malmö has undergone several changes. The basic character of this
city, Sweden's third largest - however, remains unchanged. Its sprawling parks,
distinctive architecture, tree-lined canals and the rich tapestry of its multi-ethnic
population speak of an unhurried pace of life, goodwill and tolerance.
The biggest change that came about in recent years and made a great impact on the local populace was the completion of the öresund Bridge in 2000. This modern engineering marvel links Malmö with Copenhagen, Denmark. It now takes only 22 minutes to travel in comfort by train between Malmö Central Station and Copenhagen Airport. The benefits derived are numerous and the local economy is responding positively to this new connection between Sweden and Denmark. The scene of workers and office-goers commuting between Malmö and Copenhagen is now a part of the normal, daily activity. On the other hand, the city lost some of its prominent symbols of an older economy. A distinctive feature of the city that passed into history with the advent of the öresund Bridge was the ferry service that once linked it with Copenhagen. Yet another feature of the city to disappear this year was the majestic travelling crane of Kockum's Shipyard. Once an inseparable part of the skyline, the crane has recently been demolished and sold to a Korean shipyard. The Swedish presence in shipbuilding spearheaded by Kockum's and symbolised by this mammoth crane now passes into history. It is with a heavy heart that the local population bids farewell to this great symbol.
Professor, Kobe University of Mercantile Marine
Nagasaki is where I was born and grew up. My parents and childhood friends live there.
Kobe is where I studied marine engineering as a student. There, I became acquainted with some Japanese people who helped me learn about shipping.
London is where I devoted myself most to my study. There, I became acquainted with some British and Syrian families.
Tokyo is where I found a job in the field of ship classification, and got married and settled down. There, I became acquainted with many Orientals in the area of shipping.
Kobe is where I am teaching marine engineering as a teacher. There, I became acquainted with Japanese and Asian students.
Malmo is where I taught MET at WMU. In various parts of the world, I made acquaintances and friends who are active not only in the maritime field but also in various other fields. For me, Malmö is a door on which I knocked, and the door led me to the world.
2002052, MET, Ghana
Education in Ghana is usually preceded by some form of pre-school preparation in a nursery or kindergarten. These are usually found in urban areas where most parents are workers and therefore are not home all of the time. These therefore serve more as child day-care centres even though they give the children some form of pre-school training. The idea is gradually catching on in rural areas where most dwellers are farmers and therefore away from home most of the time, too. However, here the service is provided by the government and is usually free.
Basic education consists of six years in primary school and three years at junior secondary school. This is followed by a further three years in the senior secondary level in preparation for entry into university or technical school.
Up to junior secondary level, apart from mathematics, English and science, other subjects now taught include technical and vocational skills. These practical subjects equip children who are unable to enter tertiary institutions, with the basic knowledge to engage in other useful self-initiated ventures.
Continuation at the senior secondary level involves subjects other than basic ones, such as economics and government. The system though laudable has been experiencing a lot of problems and therefore is not as effective due to lack of resources in terms of infrastructure and manpower.
20022086, MSEP, Fiji
The first day in the clean day of Malmö gave me a positive attitude at the beginning of my 17 months study at WMU.
Every graduate of WMU remembers the old classic building at 6 Dispontegatan as their home during their studies here: The big family, different cultures, social activities, never ending study program and homesickness. This had a massive impact on the cooperation among the students, sharing and supporting one another, fulfilling the IMO objective of a Network.
As students head back to their countries, life in Malmo doesn't become just a chapter in their lives, but a beginning for graduates to use their expertise in various areas.
I would like to thank the Ship & Ocean Foundation for their support in funding my studies and especially Mr. Yohei Sasakawa for his vision, and his belief that developing states need to have the same privilege as that of developed maritime states in the Global Maritime Industry. The WMU Japan Sasakawa Fellows Network had emerged when numerous global events now affecting the maritime world took place. The formation of the Fellows Forum will provide greater international cooperation among maritime states through the SOF-WMU graduates, enhancing the object of IMO "Safer Ship and Cleaner Ocean", and sustainable development.
2003027, MA, Cambodia
There are around two hundred countries and four major religions in the six continents around the world. But we are not as devoted to our beliefs as Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, president of The Nippon Foundation is. I, will never forget this great man's words. He said, "The world is a family, and all humankind are brothers and sisters."
From that time, I have followed his beliefs and realized the friendship among human beings. My heart is soothed.
Every religion is good when it's performed with devotion. Really, religion is a matter of belief as well as deeds. I, in the core of my heart, understand the meaning of Mr Sasakawa's speech. As a follower of Buddism, I believe that all human beings are equal. Every man has the same feelings of honour and disgrace. We share the same roots. Our destination is the same. We live in the same world, the same environment. Friendship, brotherhood, covers all human beings under an umbrella.
The Nippon Foundation creates closer ties between the donor and the fellow donees. I bow my head to this great organization. It creates a unique example of brotherhood. Finally, I wish the organization progress and long life. I also pay the greatest respect to Mr. Sasakawa.