Emerging Leaders: Japan Exchange Program “KAKEHASHI Project”

The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF) Leadership Institute will select 18 participants for the 2018 CBCF Emerging Leaders: Japan Exchange Program “KAKEHASHI Project” in partnership with the government of Japan. Through this initiative, the CBCF, the Embassy of Japan, and the Japanese International Cultural Center (JICE) aim to increase African-American interest in and exposure to the culture of Japan, thereby expanding opportunities for African Americans in an era of increasing globalization.

In 2018, one (1) group of 18 participants will be selected for the program. The project will take place in and around Tokyo, Japan over eight days. The program will include site visits to cultural and historical landmarks, lectures on U.S. – Japan relations, visits to high tech/traditional industries, and an overnight visit with a Japanese family. Prior to departure, participants will take part in orientation activities in Washington, DC followed by a debrief session upon their return.

CBCF is committed to increasing access to opportunities that will develop leadership qualities for our participants. While many students do not have the resources or exposure to participate in international opportunities, CBCF is excited to partner with the Japanese government to expand access to global opportunities for emerging African- American leaders.

This international experience is non-credit bearing.

Program Dates
Tuesday, March 20, 2018 – Friday, March 30, 2018

Eligibility Requirements
•Participants should live, work, or attend school in a CBC Member District (enter zip code at house.gov to verify eligibility), or be an alumni of a CBCF program.
•Preference will be given to participants who have exhibited interest in the following academic disciplines as indicated by declared major, minor, research or work experience:
oInternational Affairs/Relations
oPolitical Science
oForeign Relations
oInternational Trade/Business
oUrban Planning
oJapanese Language
oAsian Studies
•Preference will be given to participants with no prior international experience.
Note: Individuals who have already visited Japan through any invitation program organized by Japanese Government are not eligible to apply.
•The program is open to current undergraduate juniors, seniors, graduate participants and recent college graduates (graduated with an Associates or Bachelor’s degree May 2016 or later) with a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
•Participants should identify as Black or African-American.
•Participants should hold a valid (dates of travel) U.S. Passport and be able to provide their passport copy upon application submission.
•Participants must be available for the entire duration of the program. All program participants will depart from and return to Washington, D.C.

Covered Costs
•International travel from Washington, D.C. to Japan
•Costs of housing, meals, and ground transportation in Japan
•Cost of housing in Washington, D.C. during pre-departure and debrief sessions

Other/Non-Covered Costs
•$100 Program Confirmation Fee
•Round trip travel expenses to and from Washington, D.C. (Washington, D.C. is the pre-departure orientation location and point of international departure)
•Ground transportation to and from program housing when arriving to Washington, D.C. for program orientation and following post-trip debrief
•Personal expenses, such as souvenirs and non-program meals

How to Apply
The application has two parts: A General Application for everyone applying to a CBCF program and Supplemental Questions specific to the Japan Study program. Students applying for the Japan Study Abroad program must complete both parts. You will see the Supplemental Questions after completing the General Application. The application requires:

  1. 1 electronically submitted letter of recommendation is required (two are preferred). The application provides instructions for entering your references’ emails so they can receive instructions for completing the online recommendation. Ideal recommenders would be a dean, department chair, academic advisor, or employer.
  2. Resume (2 pages maximum)
  3. Recent photograph suitable for publication (i.e., a cap and gown picture, or other professional quality and professionally dressed photograph).
  4. Color copy of passport
  5. Responses of no more than 250 words to the short answer essay questions
  6. Copy of transcript uploaded to the application

International/Study Abroad
Supplemental Questions
  1. Official Transcript
    Upload a legible color copy of your current official transcript as ONE (1) PDF document (JPEG or PNG files will not be reviewed).

    Your application will not be reviewed if you have not properly uploaded an official, legible copy of your transcript in its entirety (i.e. all pages) into ONE SINGLE PDF file. We must be able to clearly read the school, student name and information, courses, grades, and all other information detailed on the transcript. If you have already uploaded a transcript this year for another application, you can select it from the drop-down menu without needing to browse through your computer files.
  2. Official Transcript #2: If you already have a degree and are pursuing another (e.g. you have a bachelor’s degree and are pursuing a master’s), please upload the additional transcript here following the same instructions.
  3. What is your view of US-Japanese cultural exchange? If you are accepted to the program, what do hope to learn and/or gain through this experience?
  4. Based on your understanding of US-Japan relations, what common interests do the countries share and how are those interests relevant to your career path and/or interest in US-Japan relations?
  5. Please list an institution/government organization/corporation you would like to visit while in Japan. Please explain why you would like to visit them.
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