Dilumi Kumaraguru / 早稲田大学ビジネススクール
Country: Sri Lanka.
•Bachelor of Business Administration (Hons) in Business Management, Sheffield Hallam University, United Kingdom.
•Masters of Financial Economics, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka.
Profession: Assistant Director, Department of Development Finance, Ministry of Finance, Sri Lanka.
Class of Waseda: Master of Business Administration, Second year.
Zemi: Maki Zemi (M2).
Before entering to Waseda University, I was working as an Assistant Director of the Department of Development Finance of the Ministry of Finance, Sri Lanka. I was lucky enough to receive a scholarship from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to study the International MBA programme (IMBA) held at Waseda University, Japan. When selecting a university to apply for the MBA scholarship I had several options. But I selected Waseda University as I valued its global network as well as the curriculum. Waseda University is the Japan`s most globalized university as it has the highest number students and alumni from all over the world. I value to be a part of that great global network. After completing my studies at Waseda University, I will return to my country and resume my duties. On my return, I expect to use the knowledge, experience and global network that I expand during my time at Waseda University to support my country`s development process.
Why Maki Zemi
After entering to the IMBA – Waseda, we were supposed to select a Zemi; a special seminar type class which was a novel concept for me. Since my research topic is related to entrepreneurship I wanted to select a Zemi that I can improve my knowledge regarding the entrepreneurship and innovation. Therefore, I decided to select the Professor. Maki`s Zemi and luckily, I was selected for his Zemi by Prof. Maki after the selection interview.
As I mentioned earlier, this Zemi concept is completely a new experience for me. In our Zemi, we read and discuss many academic papers related to science, technology, entrepreneurship and innovation. Since our Zemi consists of people from different academic and cultural backgrounds we always have a rich discussion as we interpret those academic papers in different perspectives. The contents of the papers and the discussions with other students has deepen my knowledge and understanding on science, technology, entrepreneurship and innovation.
Rewards of Zemi: New Experiences and Study Tours
In our Zemi we also have guest lectures on selected premium Fridays covering some important topics such as design thinking, venture capital mechanism and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In addition to that, we had several study tours and company visits. In March 2018, we visited a traditional and rural city called Nakatsugawa located in Gifu prefecture to help them to promote tourism in the area. It was a great opportunity for us to use our theoretical knowledge to solve issues in real life situations while exploring the beautiful country side of Japan. In December 2018, we visited Google Japan and had a quality discussion with Mr. Masato Kume; an official of Google Japan. During that visit I was able to understand the unique working environment there and how it impacts on the success of Google Japan as well as its employees. In future, we have more plans to have other study tours such as the visit to the Silicon Valley of hardware which is Shenzhen, China, the visit to Rakuten, Japan and the visit to Sony factory in Oita, Japan. I hope those study tours will also help me to understand the entrepreneurship and business practices of those areas.
Related Subjects: STE
In addition to that, I participated for the Science, Technology and Entrepreneurship (STE) subject conducted by Professor. Maki. In this class, we studied academic papers on empirical research in the fields of science, technology and entrepreneurship. In the beginning, it was difficult for me to capture the essence of those papers quickly. However, due to the continuous practice and professor`s clear guidance I was able to learn the techniques of reading academic papers. I believe that the studying those academic papers has also improved my analytical thinking as well as writing skills and it will definitely help me to write a quality thesis for my Master`s thesis.
As a Sri Lankan Government officer, I will definitely use my improved capacity with the knowledge, skills, experience and innovative thinking that I gain through the Zemi and STE effectively in my future career activities to develop my country’s socioeconomic situation by enhancing the decision making, policy formulation and implementation process.