Taipei Tech and Chiba Institute of Technology (hereafter CIT) renewed the memorandum of understanding on student and learning exchanges during the visit of CIT delegates to Taipei Tech in March 2019. President Kazuhito Komiya of CIT and President Sea-Fue Wang of Taipei Tech had a pleasant talk over the status quo and the future plans.
Taipei Tech and CIT, both the historical science and technology universities in the respective country, shared the same focus on developing problem-based learning skills of the students, especially in mechanical engineering domains. Through the Sakura Project, which was initiated by JST Japan to promote Japan-Asia exchange on different fields of science, Taipei Tech has joined forces with CIT to undergo learning and cultural exchange since 2014.
The robotics contest is one of the major events in this project that get the mechanical engineering undergraduate students from different parts of Asia together to learn and play, and Taipei Tech is included in. Every summer, Taipei Tech sends a dozen of the students of mechanical engineering to Chiba for this two-week grand event, where the attending international students are grouped to design their robots following a designated topic. In each group, students from the Asian countries have to work together from drafting to completion of their robots, communicating in English to discuss every detail of the design and to solve all the technical or cultural problems during the process. Not only does such collaboration facilitate academic exchange, but also acquaint the students with problem-solving skills, international communication, and collaboration.
The Sakura Project has also enabled information exchanges on environmental protection. In 2017, Taipei Tech Environmental Engineering and Management students paid an academic visit to Minamata in Japan to take a closer look at how mercury overuse can be detrimental to the environments and creatures. The visit to the National Institute of Minamata Disease and local factories familiarized these students the analytic methods of the chemicals, ecological investigation, and, most of all, the ecological importance under the rapid economic development.
With fruitful experiences of academic and cultural exchange, Taipei Tech and CIT renewed the MOU on the current items to carry on mutual learning and friendship. Further, the MOU is also expected to extend to faculty exchanges, collaborative researches, or the short-term language learning programs in the future. The meeting this time reconfirms the friendship of the two universities and deepens the mutual confidence in the resources and quality of science and technology learning.