I gave the Keynote Speech on the first day of this Course. I spoke on a number of points including how the world has changed dramatically in the past 100 years, how globalization has brought about incredibly rapid change in the past 20 years and how it is difficult to predict what is in store for us in the future in light of current worldwide situation. I then, based on these thoughts, talked about why the Liberal Arts are so important.
Since this Summer Course was launched by a Harvard student, I also touched upon President Charles Eliot who, 100 years ago, transformed Harvard into the university it is today. I fielded a number of questions and greatly enjoyed the interaction.
The next day, a reception was held in the evening at GRIPS with the Harvard Alumni Association also invited. I also was able to attend and discovered that the talk by Tadashi Yanai of UniQlo that afternoon was a huge hit. Listening to a number of the high school students in attendance, I found that everyone had been invigorated by their experiences of just two days and that they felt that their thoughts on their future had changed and they were now really grappling with what they wanted to do in the future. That is a good thing. Their lives have just begun and it is good to have an abundance of choices.
The events of the Course are scheduled to be posted on the web and our activities were also covered by a number of media outlets. It should be fun to see what transpires.