Founder and the First President, Shigeo Hasegawa
The speech below was made by our Founder, Shigeo Hasegawa on Aug 1, 1969, the day we first began offering full-time courses.
On July 20, 1969, human beings succeeded in taking the first steps on the moon, and proved that the present day is a time of great leaps in the evolution of human history. The development of the system engineering technology which supported the success of the Apollo Program shows that the progress of scientific technology after the advent of the computer, has at last brought a revolutionary change in the civilization of human society.
In the midst of the course that our society has been changing from an "industry oriented society" to an "information oriented society", conventional sense of values have been broken down in the fields of politics, economy, culture and society.
In this time of change, our school has always instantly responded to new stages of economic development in Japan by setting an importance on acquisition of the practical and technological knowledge needed by society; and by providing highly technical professional education which fosters creative information processing experts with fundamental knowledge and an ability to make precise decisions.
In the present situation, in the world of information processing, it is almost impossible for any educational institutions to find experienced lecturers who are well-versed in many fields.
Fortunately, however, our school was originally founded as Kyoto Software Study Group by a group of chief system-engineers who were actively involved in the forefront of research; including software specialists who graduated from doctorate courses in the Department of Science and Engineering at Kyoto University. As our school has secured excellent lecturers, I am convinced that we can produce talented engineers who can handle severe business situations by providing original and substantial curriculums.
Our school has made a commitment to contributing to the progress of information processing technology and to the solidification of the foundation of relative fields through fostering capable engineers and scientists in information processing who can respond to the needs of our society.
The Founder of Kyoto Computer Gakuin, Shigeo Hasegawa
A Self-Reliant Man
Kyoto Computer Gakuin Former Director of Kamogawa Campus
J. W. Goethe’s verse inscribed on a stone: This particular one is a favorite of the KCG founder
Professor Hasegawa always dreamt of a school as a utopia.
He thought that although Kyoto Computer Gakuin existed in Japan, it had to create an another world. Also, it have to be a place where everybody shares an interest in computers that has a potential to revolutionize the history of mankind. Thus, Professor Hasegawa was passionately driven to “hand-build” a unique school, that is, only one school in the world, and he loved “being unique” most of all.
The founder of Kyoto Computer Gakuin, Shigeo Hasegawa, was indeed a self-made man. He is a role model of self-education and ”self-creation.”
Naturally, what students gain from education differs depending on the individual. It could be said that it is the student who makes the choice. However, especially in Japan, it is easy to fall into the trap of passively listening to the lectures and blindly absorbing what high-positioned teachers say. This is called cramming. But Professor Hasegawa did not share this viewpoint. Throughout his lifetime, he steadfastly held the belief that it was up to the individual to decide whether she or he accepts what she or he heard as valid or not.
When Professor Hasegawa was still alive, I had a number of opportunities to listen to and learn from him. I recall he would passionately talk with quoting words of wisdom of all ages and countries; sometimes it would be those of ancient Greek philosophers, other times, those of Zuangzi of ancient China or of Buddhist scriptures. I can still replay his voice in my mind. What was consistent among all his talks is that the words he spoke had been screened and filtered and eventually had become a part of his very person. His philosophical style can be compared to an art collector who grows to trusts his own eye, remaining independent of the general public’s view. Or it can be compared to an admirable person who would make every effort to read a sutra even while endangering his own life. I think that he might have sought knowledge in a similar manner.
Professor Hasegawa often shared the following thought with me: “There are youths who cannot or will not go to college, and my intention is to educate such youths. When they graduate from my school, I shall see them being equal to or even better than college-graduates. Kyoto Computer Gakuin has come so far with the funds brought by such youths. Each and every student have to take a role to keep the school going, and I am only here to give them a push.”
Professor Hasegawa always dreamt of a school as a utopia. I still recall an incident in the time when many conflicts took place on Japanese university campuses from 1969. We had instructors joining KCG to teach from Kyoto University, and they were divided into some conflicting groups depending on their political views. When Professor Hasegawa urged them to set aside the conflict once they were upon the KCG campus, they favorably responded. He often talked about this incident, and whenever he talked about it, he couldn’t suppress the joy he had felt at that time. Although Kyoto Computer Gakuin exists in Japan, it have to create an another world; a place where everybody shares an interest in computers that has a potential to revolutionize the history of mankind. Thus, Professor Hasegawa was passionately driven to “hand-build” a unique school, that is, only one school in the world, and he loved “being unique” most of all.
It is regrettable that his thoughts and philosophy were not written in any books for the rest of us to learn from. On the other hand, it could be said that his legacy, Kyoto Computer Gakuin, has embodied his thoughts and philosophy. In his youth, Professor Hasegawa was inspired by cybernetics, and as mentioned above, he saw great potential in computers to revolutionize the history of mankind. Professor Hasegawa set the spirit of self-help at the core of education. It may be appropriate that his educational ideas are embodied, not in books, but within Kyoto Computer Gakuin itself.