Entrance ceremony at Sokendai

This thursday morning I had to wake up a bit early because we had to attend the Entrance Ceremony at Sokendai University (Hayama Campus) at Kanagawa (South west of Tokyo, near to the sea). We gathered at the Shibuya station. We are only few students from NII, Tokyo. However, other students from Tsukuba also joined us in the station. Actually, several institutes collaboratively form Sokendai. It took about 1.5 hours to reach Hayama by our chartered bus.
At Hayama, we met more new students from other institutes of Sokendai from different parts of Japan, including one located at Hawaii too! There were about 30 new students in total, this semester. Students from differents countries around the world. I was the single Nepali.
The entrance ceremony started with a Piano recital. The Japanese lady played wonderful compositions – awesome performance. She was then joined by the brilliant Japanese classical guitarist. The entire musical performance was in jazz flavor and provided a wonderful start for the ceremony – I loved it.
The president of Sokendai marched in, followed by all the school deans and department heads  – all senior Japanese people. Then the usual introduction session. The anchor said many things in Japanese that we did not understand. Anyway we were asked to rise up and bow several times during the ceremony.
The student seminar followed after the ceremony. The theme was "Challenge". There were 3 interesting lectures from 3 different fields – space flight experience, animal behaviour and neural science!
In the evening we checked in the nearby Shonan Village Hotel. I had to share room with a young guy from Shanghai. Then all gathered for dinner. First everyone poured beer into each other’s glass, and together we Kampei !!  (cheers). There were a lots of dishes, lots of drinks (though less options for vegeterians like me). Great evening!
Then, we had parallel group discussions moderated by professors. Nice opportunity to interact with each other. Our discussions lasted more than 2 hours, supported by drinks. Finally, we went to sleep.
Next morning was exciting for us because we had the "Water Rocket" activity. Each of us made a rocket out of plastic pet bottles, assisted by their instructions. Nice looking rockets – with nozzle, nose cone and fins, and that really works! We went to the field to launch our water rockets. They had the rocket-launchers. We partially fill the rocket with water, put it into the launcher and pump air into the rocket upto about 6 atm. pressure. The rocket zooms up in the air when we release it.
The goal of the contest was to launch our rocket to a fixed target in the field. Each group had 5 rockets. We had to adjust the amount of water, air pressure, angle, etc to reach to the target. It was really fun – rockets flying in all directions, rockets flying way too far, rockets flying the opposite way, some flying outside the field, to the street  😀
The group landing nearest to the target was given a prize  – it was space food (eaten by astronauts in space)!
My rocket landed about 40m away from the target.
It was indeed a fun-filled, challenging and motivating start to we new students at Sokendai.

1 Comment »

  1. Rajiv Man said

    Japanese haru ko kurai bujhna gaaro. Water rocket re.. hehe.. Space food re.. hehe.. So amun bau, who ate those space food???? 🙂

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