2021 Obuchi Scholarship Awarded to Ms. Mana Takita

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East-West Center and Okinawa Prefectural Government logos

HONOLULU (Aug. 16, 2021) – The East-West Center is pleased to announce that this year’s Obuchi Student Scholarship has been awarded to Ms. Mana Takita to pursue a Master’s degree in Asian studies at the University of Hawai‘i. A partnership between EWC and the Okinawa Prefectural Government, the Obuchi scholarship covers tuition, housing, and other support for Ms. Takita to pursue her graduate studies while residing and participating in intercultural learning activities at the Center.

Mana Takita portraitA graduate in tourism science from Ryukyu University, Ms. Takita served as the “Miss Naha - Tourism Campaign Lady” in 2018, promoting travel to Okinawa’s capital city. “I am so honored to receive the Obuchi Scholarship from the East-West Center and the Okinawa Prefectural Government,” she said. “I hope to use this special opportunity to give back to the people of Okinawa who have supported my studies, and to learn more about how the world perceives Okinawa and Japan.”

“We greatly value this partnership with the Okinawa Prefectural Government,” said East-West Center Dean of Education Ann Hartman. “In addition to Ms. Takita, the scholarship is supporting two students now in their second year of study, Sakura Gima and Runa Yonamine.  As EWC students, they gain not just academic skills, but a chance to build relationships and networks across the Asia Pacific region and the US. Generous support from the Okinawan community and program alumni also makes this a special experience and resilient partnership.”

About Obuchi Student Scholarships
The Obuchi Student Scholarships are part of the Graduate Degree Fellowship program at the East-West Center (EWC) and support Okinawan students for master's or doctoral degree study at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM) in fields deemed beneficial to Okinawan development needs. (Read alumni reflections on the Obuchi student experience.)

Originally launched in 2000 as a partnership between the United States and Japan, today the scholarship program is jointly administered by the East-West Center and the Okinawa Prefectural Government. The program's mission is to help Okinawa develop and strengthen its human resources in order to take a proactive role in Asia Pacific intellectual, research, and business activities. Priority in the student selection process is given to those studying in fields of benefit to Okinawan development.