©Waseda University ICC 'Swiss Culture Night' (6 December 2023)

Swiss Culture Night at Waseda University

The Swiss Culture Night, organized by the Intercultural Communication Center of Waseda University in collaboration with the Science & Technology Office Tokyo took place on December 6, 2023. With the help of Japan Switzerland Tourism, and the Swiss Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Japan, the event offered a dive into Swiss culture including its higher education landscape and scholarship opportunities through presentations, posters, a Swiss apero, and a quiz.

On December 6, an event introducing Swiss culture organized by Waseda University’s Intercultural Communication Center (ICC) took place at the Okuma Garden Hall. Nearly 100 students from diverse backgrounds gathered for a taste of Swissness. Among them a dozen Swiss students currently studying at Waseda University.

The event started with a welcome remark by Ms. Nanami Yasuda from ICC, who initiated the event following a trip to Switzerland, where she witnessed its various facets and experienced stunning mountainous landscapes. Her journey in Switzerland motivated her to realize an event around Swiss culture to promote intercultural exchange and understanding. The Science & Technology Office Tokyo then introduced to the audience Switzerland’s diversity, unique political system, and higher education institutions, together with information on the Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship (ESKAS). In particular, the 6 Swiss universities that have an exchange partnership with Waseda University were highlighted (University of Bern, University of Basel, University of Geneva, University of Lausanne, University of Zurich, and University of St.Gallen) with the hope of fostering curiosity in a potential academic exchange in Switzerland. Mr. Jim Zouridis, Executive Director of the Swiss Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Japan (SCCIJ), then presented the Swiss-Japan Scholarship Fund powered by SCCIJ and the Swiss-Japanese Chamber of Commerce (SJCC). Lastly, four fellow Swiss students gave the audience further insights into their daily lives in Switzerland.

The joyful event moved on to the highly awaited “Swiss apéro”. The exchanges were lively, and the event marked the start of new international friendships around a glass of fine Swiss wine and various kinds of delicious Swiss cheese. Through informative panels provided by Japan Switzerland Tourism, the participants also had the opportunity to learn more about Swiss tradition, nature, the Christmas season, Heidi, and so forth. They could also take a sweet memory back home by taking a picture with their newly made friends at the photo spot. The event was concluded by stimulating their neurons through a Swiss Quiz with prizes to be won by the best-performing teams.

We are pleased to have been part of this refreshing event and sincerely thank ICC for the invitation to help with the organization.