The University of Tokyo was established in 1877 as the first national university in Japan. It offers courses in essentially all academic disciplines at both undergraduate and graduate levels and provides research facilities for these disciplines. The University aims to provide its students with opportunities for intellectual development as well as for the acquisition of professional knowledge and skills. The University has a faculty of approximately 2,800 professors, associate professors, and lecturers, and a total student enrollment of about 28,000. As of 2003, approximately 2,100 international students, and 2,200 foreign researchers come annually to the University for short and extended visits. The University is known for the excellence of its faculty and students; many of its graduates are and have always been leaders in the government, in business, and in the academic world.
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The University organization consists of the College of Arts and Sciences, 9 faculties, and 15 graduate schools. The 9 faculties are Law, Medicine, Engineering, Letters, Science, Agriculture, Economics, Education , and Pharmaceutical Sciences. The traditional 11 graduate schools are Law and Politics, Medicine, Engineering, Humanities and Sociology, Science, Agricultural and Life Sciences, Economics, Arts and Sciences, Education, Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Mathematical Sciences.
In the past decade the University saw the establishment of 4 new pioneering graduate schools: Frontier Sciences, Interdisciplinary Information Studies, Information Science and Technology, and Public Policy.
The University operates the following 11 institutes: the Institute of Medical Science, the Earthquake Research Institute, the Institute of Oriental Culture, the Institute of Social Science, the Institute of Industrial Science, the Historiographical Institute, the Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, the Institute for Cosmic Ray Research, the Institute for Solid State Physics, the Ocean Research Institute, and Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology.
The University also has two kinds of shared facilities. One is open to all University of Tokyo scholars, in order to facilitate collaborative education or research. There are 18 facilities of this sort. (Refer to the Organization Chart on page 8.) The other kind of shared facility was established to focus on special goals. There are four facilities belonging to this type, and they are open to all scholars in Japan. (Refer to the Organization Chart)
There are also many research facilities connected to the various faculties of the University. (Refer to the Organization Chart on page 7.) All the institutes and research facilities work closely with their related faculties and graduate schools. Many of the faculty members associated with these institutes engage in graduate school teaching and supervise graduate students working towards advanced degrees.
The University library system, centered on the General Library, is composed as a network linking the 55 libraries affiliated with the various faculties, institutes, and graduate schools. It holds about 8.1 million books and periodicals, including various rare publications. In response to recent technological innovations, the library system has been actively digitizing scholarly information. The University Museum is unique; it is, in fact, a system of specialized museums, covering a wide range of fields from paleontology to Andean anthropology.
The University has a tradition of giving considerable autonomy to its student body. Students carry out two annual festivals: the Komaba Festival in November at the Komaba Campus, organized and run by first and second-year undergraduates, and the May Festival, Gogatsu-sai, at the Hongo Campus, organized by third and final year undergraduates. These festivals are open to the public, and many visitors come to get a glimpse of such activities at the University. In addition, the University of Tokyo has introduced in recent years a new annual event, which introduces actual university life to high school students from all over Japan who hope to eventually enter this university.
The University of Tokyo is composed of three campuses: Hongo, Komaba, and Kashiwa. In addition, the University of Tokyo facilities are situated in other parts of both Tokyo and the nation. The main campus of the University is located in Hongo, Bunkyoku, Tokyo; it occupies about 56 hectares of the former Kaga Yashiki, the Tokyo estate of a major feudal lord. Parts of the seventeenth century landscaping of the original estate have been preserved and provide greenery and open space, much needed in an otherwise crowded campus. The celebrated Akamon, or Red Gate, which graces the campus, was a special gate on the Kaga estate and dates back to 1827. It has been designated as an Important Cultural Property by the Japanese government. Most of the faculties, graduate schools and research institutes of the University are located on the Hongo campus.
The Komaba campus, located in the Komaba section of Meguro-ku, Tokyo, occupies an area of about 35 hectares. Facilities such as the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Graduate School of Mathematical Sciences, the Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology, and the Institute of Industrial Science stand on this campus.
The Kashiwa campus, the newest of the three, is located in Kashiwa City, Chiba Prefecture, a suburb of Tokyo. Located on this approximately 24-hectare campus are the Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, the Institute for Cosmic Ray Research, and the Institute for Solid State Physics, etc. The University of Tokyo in the twenty-first century is being built up on the tight links among these three campuses.
Having entered the twenty-first century, the University of Tokyo is facing its most decisive turning point since its founding, leading to great leaps, as various universities around the world are advancing reform. It is both the goal and task of the University of Tokyo to raise its autonomous management qualitatively, to aim for further advancements in education and research activities, to expand exchanges with the world?particularly with Asia, to create diverse links with society, and to cultivate human talent that can contribute to the peace and welfare of humanity.
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