IUJ held the IUJ Alumni Networking Forum in IUJ Tokyo Office. Over 20 IUJ alumni ranging in graduation years from 1985 to 2018 joined for an evening of continuing education and networking. Our special speaker was IUJ’s own Dr. Mohammed Ahmed, now a specially appointed faculty member specializing in Cross Cultural Communication skills and communication sensitivities.
Alumni and their guests became more aware of how important it is to look beyond a person’s “single story.” To look more deeply at a person than just one impression, and to get to know them not by asking “where are you from?” but “where are you local?” This simple change can help us get to know more of a person’s current cultural situation, and then go back to their earlier years to “where are you from?”. He stressed that not only is this important when interacting with person from a different nationality, but even within your same nationality: As people from Bangladesh and Japan are different, so are people from from Osaka and Tokyo (“Why do they use the opposite side of the escalator from each other?”). To help the participants continue their discovery and understanding of these issues, Dr. Ahmed shared several impressive TedxTalks to view later on. Many in the audience eagerly took photos of the screen to remember to check them out.
After the mini lecture, an interactive networking and information exchange took place until the attendees were finally willing to leave the venue. All agreed that holding such continuing education events 3-4 times a year is beneficial for everyone. The Alumni Relations Office promised to continue organizing them.
Special thanks to Dr. Ahmed, IUJ’s Super Global University office for their partial sponsorship, and the Alumni Executive Council for their support and participation.
IUJ Alumni Relations Office
International University of Japan