Iyo Cho

How did you choose SCOPE at Hosei University?

It has always overwhelmed me that the planet we live on is facing numerous kinds of pressures and challenges, and my concern and passion for sustainable development has become stronger since I participated in a voluntary activity in high school with the aim of raising the awareness of water crisis that is happening around us. For example, despite the dramatic economic growth in the past few decades, a vast number of people still have no access to safe water. Many people in the world excuse their dumping of sanitary sewage and industrial wastewater for economic and development reasons.
When I found out about SCOPE at Hosei University, it impressed me with its strong sustainability focus and its consistent efforts towards sustainability, and courses in different areas, which are all related to and essential for sustainability studies. I believe I can learn comprehensively about the relationship among society, economy, and environment, as well as develop analytic and problem-solving skills from interdisciplinary perspectives, through small-sized classes and interaction with professors and classmates in SCOPE program. I also believe the learning environment is more diverse and international since SCOPE is an English-based program.

Tell us about your research project or academic interest.

With concerns about water issues in the world, such as water pollution and water shortage, as well as the social problems that come along with the water issues, I did a research project in the first-year introductory seminar class on water insecurity in the Nile River basin. In it, I discussed the causes of water insecurity in this region, the multiple effects on society, as well as the possible measures and governance. In addition, I have also researched on the topics such as rural-urban education disparity in China, LGBT+ in Japan, the importance of indigenous peoples and traditional ecological knowledge to ecosystems, and so on. Recently, sustainable fashion also aroused my academic interest, which might be my next research project. The more research you do, the more interesting it will be and the wider your knowledge and points of view will be.

What have you enjoyed most about the program so far?

Because of the comprehensive studies in SCOPE, I feel I’m gaining knowledge of sustainability. Since classes of SCOPE program are usually small-sized, it is really easy to have close contact with others from different years in school, and even professors. Everyone can express their opinions freely, with respect for others, and we can always exchange our views and have discussions with each other. Professors are all very experienced in their academic fields, kind, and support us. Whenever I have problems, no matter about our studies or life, I can talk to them easily. Also, students are from various cultural backgrounds, which really keeps me exposed to new things. Because of the curriculum, I can make friends with not only SCOPE students, but also those from other faculties. In this program, I always feel diversity and inclusiveness.

What are your future plans and goals?

I’d like to go to another country for further study, acquainting myself with deeper insights of sustainability issues in the world. Because I have great interest in fashion, combining what I learned at Hosei, I wish to enter a famous brand company. I hope to figure out more innovative solutions and methods to reduce material use, water use, greenhouse gas emissions, chemicals, etc., in the process of fashion design and production. I hope I can contribute to making the fashion business more sustainable, in terms of benefit growth, environmental protection and responsible production, as well as social aspects such as human equality, workers’ rights, etc. I really want to explore more possibilities and solutions to make the current situations better.