International Christian University (ICU) is the first four-year liberal arts college in Japan. For the past six decades, they have spearheaded liberal arts education with particular features that were standard abroad, but relatively unknown in Japan until recently. Dr. Hibiya will describe ICU’s past and present, situating them in the flow of recent trends in higher education, in Asia and Japan. She will focus on the revitalization of liberal arts and discuss successful initiatives by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, as well as highlighting challenges they face now, and in the future.
Dr. Junko Hibiya is the 10th president of International Christian University (ICU) in Japan. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in French Studies and a Master of Arts degree in Linguistics from Sophia University. She then completed a doctorate in Linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania in 1988. Prior to being at ICU, she has taught at Keio University and has been Visiting Professor at Dartmouth College. In her administrative work at ICU, Dr. Hibiya served as Director of Japanese Language Programs, Chair of the Division of Languages, Director of Academic Reform, and for the past four years, Vice President for Academic Affairs (VPAA). As evidence of her leadership, ICU successfully completed academic reforms in the undergraduate College of Liberal Arts and the Graduate School during her tenure as Director of Academic Reform and VPAA.