Ochanomizu University and Nara Women's University were selected in AY 2014 as recipients of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology's (MEXT) Grants for Promoting Reform at National Universities. The grants will help Ochanomizu University and Nara Women's University jointly pursue the headline programs.
The grants were created by MEXT to promote stronger innovation at national universities through broader collaborative efforts and the better articulation of universities' individual strengths in a global environment of aggressively increasing intellectual competition.
Ochanomizu University and Nara Women's University are striving to build a hub for training female science and engineering leaders through the following two mainstay initiatives.
- Establish a Joint Institute for the Development of Women's Science Education, and develop programs for training science professionals.
- Create a new Joint Human Life and Engineering major (tentative name) (application for approval for creating the major is currently in the preparatory stage), and promote engineering from the consumers’ standpoint, leveraging women’s strengths.
- Faculty at the two universities will collaborate with industry professionals to:
- Develop and spread new science education in secondary schools
- Establish new science curricula in universities
- Build a leadership network for female scientists
- Foster global professionals
- The initiative will include the above efforts in addition to other endeavors.
The new Graduate School major is tentatively named the Joint Human Life and Engineering Major. Application for approval for the major is currently in the preparatory stage, with availability slated for AY 2016. The major will create the first human life engineering program at a women's university, foster female researchers and engineers pursuing nimble-minded research from the consumers’ perspective, and create innovation through the fusion of human life sciences and engineering.