Montana State University

Administrators from University of Tokyo participate in training program at MSU

February 12, 2015

University of Tokyo administrators shadowed Betsy Webb from Human Resources during an exchange with MSU this month.

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A group of 18 Japanese administrators from the University of Tokyo, Japan’s top university, are participating in a special short-term training program at Montana State University.

The group discussed best practices in higher education with MSU President Waded Cruzado as well as MSU faculty and staff throughout campus.

The University of Tokyo participants were divided into two programs. The first stayed at MSU for about a week. The remaining half of the group stayed at MSU an additional week to job shadow MSU’s offices of Human Resources, Student Success and International Programs.

MSU officials organized and coordinated the program with counterparts at the University of Tokyo, which is the top-ranked university in Japan according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities. The University of Tokyo is designated a Top Global Institution by the Ministry of Education in Japan, which includes special funding for activities designed to provide faculty, staff and students with international experiences.

In addition to training sessions, program participants took part in several cultural activities in Montana, including a visit to the Museum of the Rockies and a tour of Yellowstone National Park.

David Di Maria, MSU’s associate provost for international programs, described the visit as an ideal opportunity to exchange new ideas and increase intercultural understanding between the University of Tokyo visitors and their MSU counterparts.  

Taku Onozato from the University of Tokyo’s International Planning Group coordinated the two groups and served as translator and chaperone. Onozato had been at MSU four years ago as a participant in the longstanding MSU LEAP program, a year-long exchange with MSU and staff at Japanese universities who are employees of MEXT, the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

Onozato said he brought the group to Bozeman and MSU because he loved his time here, and knew it would be a good place for an exchange. He said the enthusiasm of the group’s participants for the visit confirmed that he was correct.

“They loved the people in Bozeman and MSU, and they loved Yellowstone,” he said. “The way we deal with matters in a university is entirely different, so learning how a U.S. university works is very valuable for us.”

To learn more about the University of Tokyo program, please contact Janelle Rasmussen at To learn more about the MSU Office of International Programs Training and Special Programs Division, visit


Janelle Rasmussen (406) 994-7602,