Masato Tokuda, 2017, Japan

Why the MA: After working in international development with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for nine years, I felt it was necessary to see development works from wider contexts outside of Japan. I was convinced that our international development program would not succeed if we only addressed domestic politics and the demands of the developing countries we were seeking to help. These elements are essential, but you can only have a really strong impact if you design and implement a program with careful consideration of global diplomacy. From this perspective, I thought it would be meaningful to study in a school that produces a lot of diplomats and UN officials from all over the world. I also thought it would be a big advantage to study in Boston - a city where you can interact with students from other schools like Harvard and MIT either through cross-registering or by participating in off-campus activities.

One thing that has surprised you: What has surprised me the most is that Fletcher offers many opportunities for students to get out of the class and get hands-on experience in the real world. Before I entered this program, I thought that Fletcher was a relatively academic school. While this is true (and I appreciate that fact) I also found that The Fletcher School also makes efforts to engage its students in conferences, internships, and entrepreneurship opportunities and provides good support. For example, the school not only organizes a social entrepreneurship competition, but also provides seminars and workshops that would help students work towards becoming better entrepreneurs.

Favorite magazine

The Economist

Favorite city

Bangkok (Thailand), Dar es Salaam (Tanzania)

Favorite landmark

Serengeti National Park (Tanzania), old temples in Bagan (Myanmmar)

Global issue that brought you to Fletcher

Development in Africa, refugee, North-South divide

Fletcher alumnus you admire

Mr. Yasushi Akashi

Activities involved in at Fletcher

African club

Japan club

Education before Fletcher

Bachelor of Laws, The University of Tokyo

Experience before Fletcher

Assistant Director, Office for Global Issues and Development Partnership, Japan International Cooperation Agency, Tokyo, Japan