Hitsumabushi, anyone? Delicious cultural enrichment for expanding global perspective
Two outings organized by the international affairs team gave students nearing the end of a busy semester a chance to contextualize their studies against the backdrop of Japan's rich culture with a closer look at two of the country's most well-known industrial and cultural exports: automobiles and cuisine. Trips to both the Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology and the Mizkan Museum guided newcomers to Japan through a deeper exploration of how businesses survive and grow with their society's development.
While the Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology introduces the history of Japanese manufacturing technology, exhibiting the textile machinery that formed one of the core industries that helped build modern Japan and exploring how the company transitioned into the successful automobile manufacturing firm it is known as today, the Mizkan Museum trip, complemented with side trips to the nearby Kunizakari Sake Museum and dinner at an unagi-don restaurant, dives into the culture of Japan's beloved cuisine with interactive exhibits that participants found engaging and relatable.
Billy Chan, a class of '24 MBA candidate and contributing photographer, attended both outings and reported as follows:
I learned a lot from both museums, but in different ways. The Toyota trip was more historical, and it was definitely interesting to see how a business develops--but I don't have an engineering background, so others got more out of it than I did. Personally, the sake-vinegar trip was more memorable for me, because food and drink are part of my everyday life. I use ponzu at home, you know?
We certainly understand, Billy! The value of cultural enrichment experiences is that they inform how we can more fully enjoy the otherwise mundane aspects of life. Amongst some of the other shots he took throughout the day, Billy happily shares his photo of the hitsumabushi dinner he and other participants tucked into with newfound appreciation at the end of their journey.
Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology
Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technologyhttps://www.tcmit.org/english/