The global pandemic of COVID-19 forced both Ritsumeikan University (RU) and American University (AU) to suspend student international travel between the two schools.
After continued discussion, RU and AU made a decision to resume sending Sakura Scholars to their host school starting the summer 2021.
Students in the AU first cohort, who had once studied at RU before the outbreak began, are able to enter Japan, so are students with Japanese citizenship. We are pleased to welcome 13 AU students to campus in the fall semester.
On September 15, we organized a newcomer orientation in-person for 4 second and third-cohort AU students with Japanese nationality who are studying at RU for the first time.
During the orientation, the students learnt about an overview of the RU experience. This included introduction of the university and college, academic features, student support, campus resources and more. The day ended with a tour guiding the students through the college facilities, where they were greeted by JDP faculty members.
The orientation week also gave a customized session to the other two groups of the returning AU first cohort and other AU students who are studying remotely through RU. It was concluded with a course registration guidance session for all AU students taking RU courses.
The students are going to meet with their advisor and get advised on their semester coursework after the orientations.
We are all ecstatic to see AU students studying again on campus after a year-long disruption. Meanwhile, many students are still denied entry into Japan as a new visa applicant. We truly hope that all the AU Sakura Scholars will be together on campus as early as possible.