• 2021 New Year’s Greetings from President Yoshihisa Baba


2021 New Year’s Greetings from President Yoshihisa Baba

    January 2021


    We were able to start this significant year, 2021, with a victory in the outward route and finishing second overall in the Tokyo-Hakone Round-Trip College Ekiden Race (Hakone Ekiden), one of the biggest collegiate relay marathon races. I would like to express my gratitude to all those involved in the Ekiden and to those who supported our university throughout Japan and around the world.  I sincerely wish you all good health and happiness.


    I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the faculty, staff, and students, and to all who have cooperated in continuing our education and research in the past year, amid the unprecedented situation of the novel coronavirus infection (COVID-19). The pandemic has taught us once again that society is built on interdependence and that our lives are supported by essential workers as well as medical professionals. I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to all of you who have continued to support our society during the Corona outbreak.


    Even under these circumstances, students are showing remarkable achievements with their ingenuity in various fields, including winning in business contests outside the university and running the Hakone Ekiden. Even amid a rapidly changing society, the advancement of the online world has created more connections with people around the world; expanding the possibilities for learning. Last year was also a year of great achievements in terms of research. The Human Glycome Project is one of 15 projects included in the "Roadmap 2020 – Fundamental Concepts for Promoting Large Scientific Research Projects-“ formulated last fall. The Glycan & Life System Integration Center will participate in the project as a partner institution. In addition, the Institute of Plankton Eco-engineering has been selected for SATREPS. For more details, please refer to "2020 Soka University 10 Major News"(Only in Japanese).


    On April 2nd of this year, Soka University will celebrate the 50th anniversary of its founding. In April last year, we announced the basic concept of the "Soka University Grand Design 2021-2030" as our new 10-year mid-to-long-term plan. Under the theme of "A university that fosters value-creating 'Global Citizens',” specific plans have been formulated in four strategic areas (education, research, SDGs, and diversity). These events need to be reorganized to follow the COVID-19 prevention guidelines. However, we will continue to prepare for these commemorative events so that students, faculty, staff, alumni, guardians, and all those who support the university can make a fresh start towards 2030, the 100th anniversary of the publication of “The System of Value-Creating Pedagogy.” The details will be posted on our website as soon as they are finalized.


    There have been a few students who have tested positive for the infection, but fortunately they have recovered without severe complications However, both the infection situation and the medical care provision system in Tokyo have reached the highest alert level. Furthermore, a COVID-19 variant that is more infectious has been discovered in Japan as well. Please take care and follow protocols to “prevent infection” and “prevent transmission.” I sincerely wish you all good health and continued success in 2021.


    Yoshihisa Baba
    President of Soka University