The Japan Foundation, an agency in Japan which promotes cultural exchanges with other countries, has announced a new initiative aimed at American high school students studying the Japanese language. The JET Memorial Invitation Program is named in honor of Ms. Taylor Anderson and Mr. Montgomery Dickson, two Americans in the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program who were killed in the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. The program will run for five years, with the support of both the Japan Foundation and the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and is open to interested high school juniors and seniors who have completed two years of Japanese language study.
According to the foundation, the goals of the program are to:
- Enhance the motivation of Japanese language learners in U.S. high schools and promote Japanese language education throughout the U.S.
- Encourage future generations to participate in Jet and other similar exchange programs to Japan, and
- Develop networks among U.S. high school students who will act as a bridge to connect Japan and the U.S. in the future.
The program will run for over a week and will be based out of the Japan Foundation Language Institute in Osaka. Airfare to and from Kansai Airport in Osaka, as well as to and from the orientation area in San Francisco, will be provided.
The deadline for application for the 2011 program is this Friday, May 13. More information on the program is available in a PDF here.