The National Institute for Youth Education (NIYE) is in charge of the annual Micronesia -Japan Student Exchange Program, which includes the FSM, Palau and the Marshalls. This year NIYE, invited 15 students and 3 chaperons each, totaling a 72 member-delegation from the four states of the FSM for the inbound portion of the exchange program. The increase of number from 10 last year to 15 this year from each state under NIYE’s project coincides with the 50th anniversary of the founding of the National Memorial Olympic Youth Center, where NIYE is also located.
The students and chaperons, accompanied by staff of the hosting program, had an opportunity to visit the FSM Embassy and were welcomed by the entire staff. They were first briefed by Ambassador Fritz on the ongoing FSM-Japan relationship and current programs, and later took part in a friendly question and answer session. The students and chaperon had the rare opportunity to mingle and view first-hand FSM’s branch office in Tokyo, and the people working in it.
The students also visited and took part in a cultural exchange program with students of Shoto Junior High School in Tokyo, where each island groups performed their culture and dances to the students of the hosting school. On their visit to the Japan Diet Building, the Honorable Yoshiro Mori, the former Prime Minister of Japan, welcomed the delegations. On later dates, the students were divided into groups and were sent to various locations in Japan where they home-stayed with Japanese families and further conducted exchanges with students of each respective region.
At the farewell reception, the Honorable Keiji Furuya, the chairman of the FSM-Japan Parliamentary Friendship League, bid the students farewell and encouraged them to look at the opportunity to study in Japan in the future, and to strengthen the friendly relationship between the Micronesia region and Japan.