Dean Matt Wilson of Temple University, Japan Campus (TUJ) gave a 90-minute inspirational talk in Japanese to Showa Women’s University (SWU) students on June 30. Speaking on the topic of “Global Talent and International Education,” students joined Dean Wilson both in-person and online. This talk was organized by SWU as part of distinguished-lecturer course series entitled “Culture and Society” held every year all SWU students are required to take.
Dean Wilson talked about the demand for global talent and the role that international education plays in meeting this demand. Using the interactive educational approaches and innovative mindset used at TUJ as illustrations, Dean Wilson highlighted the benefits of a global education.
Drawing from his personal childhood experiences up through his professional life, Dean Wilson talked about the importance of acquiring international experience and developing global expertise. By developing an international background, students can distinguish themselves in both domestic and global marketplaces. In turn, this can lead to new and exciting doors being opened.
In today’s age of cross-border interactions, he challenged students to explore international opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom whenever possible. “It will be challenging for sure, but any new challenges will enhance your life,” said Dean Wilson, encouraging the students to get out of their comfort zones and find success in an increasingly global labor market.
Dean Wilson also stressed the importance of setting goals and crafting a career pathway based on one’s own talents, interests, and strengths. Using entertaining stories and illustrations, Dean Wilson shared his path to a career in international law and higher education administration (including several university presidencies) that was initially spawned by a conversation with a friendly widow in his neighborhood when he was only three years old. Dean Wilson shared that he was an average and ordinary kid who was sometimes uncertain of his own abilities. By working hard and seeking to distinguish himself through unique experiences, he was able to turn his ordinary abilities into extraordinary opportunities. A key component to the success was his international experiences in Japan and other areas around the world.
During the Q&A session, one of the students asked how Dean Wilson stayed motivated to study hard to become an international lawyer. He recommended the students engage with professionals in their areas of interest. He also emphasized that volunteering or working in such areas can be invaluable. In closing, Dean Wilson encouraged the SWU students to make the most of collaborative opportunities with TUJ as one way of developing international expertise.