Category Archives: Ashoka U

UMD Student Entrepreneur Sparks Growth in a Small Japanese Village

This summer, Josh Turskey participated in the Helio program in Japan, a partnership between College of the Atlantic and Ashoka U.  The University of Maryland is an Ashoka U Changemaker Campus and had the opportunity to send one special student on the program to think like an entrepreneur in the higher education industry on a small island in Japan. Our Changemaker Campus designation is led by the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship.

by: Josh Turskey

For an architecture major, I have not traveled many places. I’ve been to Ohio countless times, and traveling to southern Canada is not much different than the landscape of America. With really only one trip out of the continent under by belt, I nervously boarded my flight from Tokyo to Hiroshima not knowing exactly if I was on the right plane.

Upon reaching the Island of Osakikamijima, a small island near Hiroshima City, we were given our mission: My peers and I were to begin critically thinking and laying out the ground work for what a college on the island would look like. We were split into groups to gather information and make recommendations on different pieces of the potential college. Groups focused on agriculture, food systems, sustainability, waste management and urban planning. My peers were from all over the world including Japan, Canada, Ethiopia, Ireland, England and all across the United States.

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