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Japan Outreach Initiative (JOI) Program

A joint initiative of the Japan Foundation and Laurasian Institution, the Japan Outreach Initiative (JOI) brings volunteer Japanese coordinators to regions of the U.S. where Japanese culture has been less accessible. JOI coordinators are hosted by U.S. nonprofits and educational institutions with a strong commitment to promoting learning about Japan. During the two-year program, JOI coordinators engage their American community through Japanese-themed programming—from lectures to hands-on elementary school activities to events focusing on traditional Japanese art forms.

Video of 20 years of program history

List of Current Coordinators

Name of CoordinatorYearHost OrganizationState
Hatano, Aiko2021-2023Mayville State UniversityND
Iwamoto, Aya2021-2023University of Central OklahomaOK
Nagai, Mariko2021-2023University of Nebraska-LincolnNE
Okamura, Nanaka2021-2023Western Carolina UniversityNC
Watanabe, Yoko2021-2023Japan America Society of ColoradoCO
Yamamoto, Masahiro2021-2023Japanese Friendship Garden of PhoenixAZ
Yamaoka, Maika2021-2023University of Memphis and Memphis Botanic GardenTN
Aoki, Shunsuke2022-2024Dickinson State UniversityND
Ayukawa, Yuki2022-2024University of Wyoming – Global Engagement OfficeWY
Hayasaka, Takeshi2022-2024Japan America Society of IowaIA
Hisatomi, Yoshie2022-2024The University of Kansas Center for East Asian StudiesAR
Kawazoe, Manami2022-2024West Liberty UniversityWV
Mori, Kaoru2022-2024Montana State University BillingsMT
Sakakibara, Hitomi2022-2024Texas State Museum of Asian Cultures & Education CenterTX
Tachio, Satoyo2022-2024University of Findlay’s Mazza MuseumOH
Umebara, Mizuki2022-2024Delta State UniversityMS
Yamamoto, Yuriko2022-2024Japan America Society of KentuckyKY

List of Past Coordinators and Their Program Reports

Related Website and SNS Link

Program Highlights

Anniversary Events

JOI Coodinator Initiated Events

Central Arkansas Omatsuri Japanese Festival 2019

For more details about the JOI Program, including eligibility, benefits, and how to apply, please contact:

Laurasian Institution
107 Spring St.
Seattle, WA 98104
Tel: 206.367.2152