12th Outreach Programme for University Students (OPUS) Lecture Series with Niigata University

23 Niigata University students visited ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute for their Spring Seminar this year, under the ISEAS’s Outreach Programme for University Students (OPUS).

Friday, 1 March 2019 – ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute held the Outreach Programme for University Students (OPUS) Lecture Series with Niigata University, now in its 12th year.

A group photo of the students, with ISEAS staff and researchers.  (Credit: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)

Niigata University and ISEAS have continued to collaborate through the years because of the close relationship between both institutions. To date, more than 280 students from Niigata University have gone through this programme since its inception in 2008.

For this year’s programme, students were exposed to discussions covering ASEAN-Japan relations and how Japan continues to play a very important role in ASEAN’s development and integration Dr Termsak Chalermpalanupap, Lead Researcher for Political and Security Affairs at the ASEAN Studies Centre at ISEAS. Japan remains one of the top destinations for tourists from Southeast Asia, and is the fourth most important education destination. Students were exposed to a survey report published by the ASEAN Studies Centre at ISEAS, on “The State of Southeast Asia: 2019”.

From left, Dr Termsak Chalermpalanupap, Dr Lee Poh Onn and Ms Moe Thuzar anchored the first sessions of sharing before tea break. (Credit: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)

Students were also briefed on the challenges facing Myanmar by Ms Moe Thuzar, Co-coordinator of the Myanmar Studies Programme at ISEAS.  Myanmar has achieved much progress; however, funding is needed to help develop its infrastructure, communications network, and regulatory framework. There is a lot of potentials yet to be tapped with the National League of Democracy continuing to foster peace and development in the country.

Ms Evelyn Tan spoke on social integration, multi-culturalism and religious harmony in Singapore. (Credit: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)

Ms Evelyn Tan, ISEAS Research Officer at the Regional Social and Cultural Studies Programme, spoke on cultural and religious harmony in Singapore. Singapore is a multi-cultural society made up of many races and religions. Yet Singaporeans live very peacefully with different religious places of worship located next to one another. Hard work must be put in to manage religious and cultural harmony. How has that been achieved? What steps did the Singapore government take to ensure that the social fabric of harmony is maintained?

Prof Zhang Yun of Niigata University also met with ISEAS Director, Mr Choi Shing Kwok during the visit and exchanged mementoes.  Seen here, Mr Choi presenting Prof Zhang with “Light on A Hill” – ISEAS 50th anniversary commemorative book. (Credit: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)