Five graduate students in Civil Engineering of DLSU participated in the Japan-Asia Youth Exchange Program 2017 (Sakura Exchange Program in Science). Tokyo City University (TCU) hosted the delegates at their Setagaya Campus from October 9 to 16, 2017. Dr. Lessandro Garciano, Chair of the Civil Engineering Department of DLSU accompanied the students during this exchange. Being an alumnus of TCU, Dr. Garciano introduced the students to the different professors and laboratories of the urban and civil engineering department of TCU.
The student contingent included Randy B. Salazar (MS CE), Erjosh O. Salvame (BS/MS CE), John Carlo R. Samarita (BS/MS CE), Jomari F. Tan (BS/MS CE) and Rainier Lawrence A. Valdez (BS/MS CE).
The program commenced with a welcome address from Dr. Koji Homma, followed by a primer on history of TCU by Dr. Toshio Kinoshita. Professor Osamu Maruyama, Chair of the Civil Engineering Department of TCU, also gave a discussion on the week-long activity. The entire program focused on a collaborative research activity between DLSU and TCU wherein each DLSU student is paired with a TCU faculty adviser to conduct a short-term research on a pre-determined topic. The themes of the research activity are the following:
· Disaster mitigation and reduction engineering
Prof. Ikumasa Yoshida
· Structural and safety engineering
Prof. Osamu Maruyama and Prof. Hiromi Shirahata
· Geotechnical and geo-environmental engineering
Prof. Kazuya Itoh)
· Water environmental engineering
Prof. Takahito Mikami
The DLSU contingent were also accompanied by select TCU students and faculty to a campus tour which showcased various facilities in the university including the engineering laboratories where the short-term researches will be conducted for the remaining duration of the program.
To balance with the fast-paced research engagements, TCU students accompanied DLSU students to a tour in Tokyo, visiting city sights in Shibuya and Akihabara.
The exchange program also included site visit at Tokyu Construction Institute of Technology where breakthrough researches in structural integrity and construction methodologies are developed. Several features exhibited in this tour included the shaking table, reaction wall, artificial weather simulator, wind tunnel, and the variable guide frame for tunnel inspection.
The highlight of the Exchange Program was the presentation of the short-term researches conducted by DLSU graduate students in the respective laboratories. Each student was allotted fifteen minutes to present the work they have done and five minutes for the Q&A forum.
A certificate of achievement from the Japan Science and Technology Agency and TCU was given to each participant (including Dr. Garciano) after the presentations. This certificate also meant entry into the Sakura Science Club.
The program ended with a farewell party attended by faculty and students from both universities.
Write-up by: Jomari F. Tan