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February 2019 Newsletter
In this issue:
2019 MEPPI Japan Lecture Series
February 21 -  Japanese Whisky Taste and Learn
What is the secret ingredient in Japanese whisky? From international awards to soaring Hibiki prices, Suntory is the preeminent name in Japanese whisky.

Stephen Jamieson, who is currently promoting the new House of Suntory line of spirits and has been selling Suntory beverages in Pennsylvania for five years, will speak about the origins of Japanese whisky, how it's made, and how it compares to other spirits internationally. Attendees will also learn how to taste whisky, what to look for on a label, and finally, how to make the perfect highball.

Join us for this free evening on Thursday, February 21 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at the Penn Avenue Fish Company.  Regular registration is full, but sign up for the wait list to receive notification of open seats!


April 25 - What is a Japanese Garden?japanese-garden-lotus-pond 3
Dr. Brenda G. Jordan, Director of the University of Pittsburgh's National Consortium for Teaching About Asia, will explore the history and design of Japanese gardens, including the different varieties of garden, their concept outside of Japan, and suggested plant types and features for Japanese gardens in Southwest Pennsylvania.

Join us for this free event at the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden on Thursday, April 25 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. Beverages and light hors d’oeuvres will be provided and the presentation will begin at 6:30 PM. Advanced registration is required and is available on the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden website.
Thank you to Mitsubishi Electric Power Products, Inc. for their generous sponsorship of this series.arrow2
Member Spotlight: Grove City College

The JASP GCC_Red_K_C_Estwould like to thank our Academic Member, Grove City College.
Grove City College is a Christian liberal arts and sciences college, founded in 1876. Its 180-acre campus is located near the center of Grove City, about 60 miles north of Pittsburgh.
A legacy of faithfulness to their mission creates educational outcomes that employers and graduate schools find highly desirable. This dedication through the years of the Grove City College community, including nearly 29,000 alumni, has led them to the pinnacle of nationally recognized liberal arts and sciences colleges. In 2017, Grove City College received "Best National Liberal Arts Colleges 2017" by U.S. News & World Report.
We would like to heartily thank Grove City College for its support of our organization!
Geostrategy in East Asia
The US-Japan alliance has provided one of the foundations for decades of security and freedom in Asia. But, the neighborhood is changing: Japan is experiencing significant strategic and diplomatic challenges from China, faces increasingly aggressive North Korean weapons development and testing, and has an uncertain relationship with South Korea.

As uncertainty in the region abounds, Japan considers how to work effectively with the U.S. but also how to chart its course as a leader and a balancer in Asia. Prime Minister Abe’s vision includes pledges for deregulation and economic renewal, the development of Japan’s military capability, and policies to stimulate domestic social innovation. His landslide victory in the recent election indicates that the Japanese people support these new directions. 

Join us for a conversation with experts Yuki Tatsumi & Wallace “Chip” Gregson on the evolving Japan-US alliance and its impact on security and trade in Asia.
Rivers Club, 301 Grant Street Suite 411, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Tuesday, March 05, 7:30 to 9:00 AM


This event is supported by a grant from NAJAS and the Embassy of Japan in Washington DC. 
Also in partnership with the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh.

JASP Golf Outing

Save the date for this year's Golf Outing on Monday, May 13! We will be making the event even better this year, so stay tuned for more information!golfball

This is a great opportunity to spend the day with a client, treat employees, or network with industry colleagues while supporting a noble cause. Golfers compete for winning team trophies, individual skill prizes, and hole-in-one prizes. Highlights of the event include the Grand Prize Raffle and exciting opportunities for gift certificates, dinners, golf items and more.

This year's event will be held at Butler Country Club. The golf outing offers many opportunities to support the JASP from $200 - $3,000. All supporters are publicly acknowledged. 

We hope you will join us for this fun and popular event. arrow2

The JASP Welcomes New Members

Individual Member

  • Ms. Jennifer Dowling
Not a member yet? Join the JASP today!
High School Japanese Speech ContestSpeech%20Contest%20Symbol

Preparations are underway for the 2019 High School Japanese Speech Contest! The contest will be held at the William Pitt Union on the University of Pittsburgh's Campus on Friday, March 1st and will include a full day of Japanese activities and games with opportunities to compete with other students of Japanese.
Each year more than 80 students participate in Japanese-language speech contests and poster competitions, with the poster contest open to high school students in Japan-related clubs. This year, students studying Japanese will compete for a grand prize of a Japanese electronic dictionary from the Japanese Consulate.

For more information on how to participate, visit the Speech Contest page. Please contact Katsuko Shellhammer if you're interested in participating, sponsoring, or volunteering!
Japanese-English Reading Circle

The Japanese-English Reading Circle is held on the first and third Saturdays of the month. In addition to discussing your reading in Japanese or English with other members, there are opportunities to play games and build your confidence and vocabulary in your second language.

Upcoming Dates
Saturday, February 2, 5:00-6:30 PM
Saturday, February 16, 5:00-6:30 PM
Saturday, March 2, 5:00-6:30 PM
Saturday, April 6, 5:00-6:30 PM

Kenmawr Apartments, Community Room, Ground Floor
401 Shady Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15232
Visit the Facebook group for more information. arrow2
Upcoming Community Events
San Francisco Career Forum 2019
Like the Boston Career Forum, the San Francisco Career Forum is open to anyone pursuing a Bachelors degree or higher who is bilingual in English and Japanese seeking a full-time or internship position. There is a travel scholarship and a financial incentive for IT and Engineering majors. Registration and attendance are free.

When: February 16 and 17, 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Where: San Francisco Airport Marriott Waterfront

Japanese Silent Film Benshi Performance
benshiIn the early 20th century, Japan had a long tradition of putting a commentator on stage (“poets of the dark”) next to silent films. Thousands of Benshi were employed in the heyday of silent films before the emergence of sound. The tradition has been revived in part by a few stalwart practitioners, including the visitor to Pitt we will see in this event, Kataoka Ichiro. Anyone interested is welcome to attend. The film runs from 6:30 to 8:30 PM. 

When: Tuesday, February 26, Reception from 5:30 PM, Film at 6:30 PM
Where: Frick Fine Arts Building, 650 Schenley Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15260

International Trade and Development Lecture
Katz Business School at the University of Pittsburgh invites you to a conversation with Ms. Hiromi Iriyama (GSPIA ’05) on her work with the Japan International Cooperation Agency, Tokyo, Japan. In her current role, Ms. Iriyama consults on procurement supervision for projects funded by Japanese Official Development Assistance Loans. Ms. Iriyama also has significant financial experience in corporate and investment banking, including with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation in Hanoi, Vietnam. Ms. Iriyama will share insights from her current work as well as her international career path, which has taken her to the United States, Vietnam, Kenya, Malaysia, Philippines, France, Germany and beyond. RSVP is not required but appreciated.

When: Tuesday, March 5, 3:00 PM to 4:00PM
Where:  4130 Posvar Hall, 230 S Bouquet St, Pittsburgh, PA 15213

iriwasedaEntrepreneurship in Japan
Katz Business School at the University of Pittsburgh invites you to a conversation on Entrepreneurship in Japan and the U.S. with Dr. Akie Iriyama, Associate Professor at Waseda University, Graduate School of Business and Finance, Tokyo, Japan. Dr. Iriyama has worked as a business consultant and industry economist including building corporate, market and global strategies for Japanese automotive manufactures. Clients have included Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi Motors and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan. Dr. Iriyama has previously presented to students during the 2018 Japan Global Research Practicum. 

When: Tuesday, March 5 at 5:00 PM to 7:00PM
Where: University Club, 3rd Floor Conference Room, 123 University Pl, Pittsburgh, PA 15260
RSVP is not required but appreciated.

The Art of Noh: Woodblock Prints by Tsukioka KogyoHagoromo_crop 2
The University Library System (ULS) of the University of Pittsburgh is exhibiting “The Art of Noh Woodblock Prints by Tsukioka Kogyo” at the Hillman Library. Noh, a theater form that originated in the fourteenth century, was associated historically with the ruling warrior class, who made up about 5% of Japan’s pre-modern population in the late feudal period between 1600 and 1868.

The exhibit is supervised by Pitt Emeritus Professors Richard and Mae Smethurst, designed by Kari Johnston, Communication Support Specialist, and curated by Hiroyuki N. Good, Japanese and Korean Studies Librarian.

Please visit the Pitt calendar for more information! Admission is free. It is open to the public during Hillman Library hours.

When: Through April 26, 2019
Where: Hillman Library, Ground Floor, Main Hall, 3960 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15260

Opening for Part-Time Japanese Instructor

The department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at the University of Pittsburgh anticipates an opening for a part-time instructor in the Japanese language program beginning in the summer of 2019.

Candidates must have native language proficiency, hold at least a college degree, and be authorized to work for the University. Prior experience in teaching foreign languages and familiarity with language pedagogy or linguistics is preferred, but not required.
If interested, please send your CV and a cover letter explaining your interest in the position to Stephen Luft by February 28, 2019. Candidates with desirable qualifications will be contacted for interviews.

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