JASC logo JASC 2020

The 72nd American Executive Committee

From its origin, JASC has been organized by university students who are interested in global and bilateral issues facing the U.S. and Japan. This tradition of student leadership has endured more than 85 years and is maintained through Executive Committees.

Each year, JASC's Executive Committee is comprised of unto eight students representing the U.S. and up to eight students representing Japan. Elected by fellow delegates, Committee members work jointly across the Pacific to create and implement the next JASC.

Throughout the year, members of the American Executive Committee are supported by International Student Conferences in Washington, D.C. Similarly, members of the Japanese Executive Committee are supported by International Education Center in Tokyo.

72nd JASC American Executive Committee


Christopher Wever

Chair
Indiana University


Carly Shiever

Hobart and William Smith Colleges


Celinda Chang

Tulane University


Alec Mesropian

University of California, Berkeley


Madeline Wiltse

Vice Chair
Johns Hopkins University SAIS


Emily Marlowe

University of California, Santa Barbara


Ryuichiro Suzuki

George Washington University


Kerry Walker

Smith College

Introductions

Christopher Wever
Email:jasc72.cwever@gmail.com

Hello everyone, my name is Christopher Wever and I am excited to be returning to JASC as the American Executive Committee Chair! Outside of JASC, I am a graduating senior at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business with a double major in Management Information Systems and Operations Management. Starting in the Fall, I will begin Graduate School at Indiana University to pursue a Masters of Science in Information Systems. Outside of classwork, my hobbies are playing tennis, watching Hoosier basketball, and participating in various clubs around IU. In addition to these hobbies, I also teach a class in the Kelley School about computers in business. Through this experience, I have made many great friends and learned a lot about my interests in this field. So much so, that it convinced me to stay and pursue my masters in that area of study. In addition to my work for IU, I also have had the opportunity to work at the North American Headquarters of Toyota Material Handling USA. There I was an IT QA and Compliance Intern for the summer of 2019.

To me, JASC is an extraordinary program because it not only allows the delegates to discuss nuanced and complicated issues that face their two nations, but it also allows delegates to make life-long friends through a shared cultural experience. During my time as a delegate to JASC, I was regularly challenged to get out of my comfort zone both academically and socially in ways that really expanded my understanding of world issues. I do not think enough can be said about the value of JASC, but I encourage anyone from any academic background to apply to the program because it is truly a life changing experience! It brings me great joy that I will have the opportunity to continue on this great tradition during the 72nd JASC. I look forward to making JASC 72 the best one yet!
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Madeline Wiltse
Email:jasc72.mwiltse@gmail.com

Hello everyone! My name is Madeline Wiltse and I have the pleasure of serving as the American Executive Committee Vice Chair for the 72 nd Japan-America Student Conference. I am currently in my second year of graduate school at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), studying American Foreign Policy. I’ve grown up living on both the east and west coast of the United States, as well as spending 10 total years in Japan due to my father’s military career, though we have currently settled down in Virginia. At my school I participate in the Global Women in Leadership organization and last year helped plan their annual Women’s conference. In my free time, I love to write creatively, play video games, and recently began learning to draw!

JASC71 served as a clarifying moment for me. It allowed me to come out of my shell in ways that I never had before and made me realize that this fostering of people-to-people connections is what I truly wish to do as a career. Despite my time in Japan as a child, JASC71 took me to places I had never considered visiting before. In my fellow delegates I found a bevy of varied experiences, people willing to teach as well as listen no matter the differing viewpoint, and many friends. I want to give this sort of joy and realization to the delegation of JASC72. JASC is a place to learn and grow as individuals and as global citizens.
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Carly Shiever
Email:jasc72.cshiever@gmail.com

Hey everyone! My name is Carly Shiever and I am serving as Co-Recruitment Chair for the 72 nd JASC. I am in my third year at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, NY, but I am currently spending a semester abroad in Hikone, Japan. My majors are International Relations and Asian Studies (Japanese concentration). I am a Los Angeles native, born and raised, and fell in love with language and culture as a child through the experiences I had with such a diverse community surrounding me. At college, I participate in an all-female acapella group and two choral ensembles; singing will forever be my favorite hobby. I am also a member of PLEN (Public Leadership Education Network), an organization that empowers women in public policy positions. At the beginning of this summer I could never have imagined the impact JASC 71 would have on me; it was truly the experience of a lifetime. Although I had been to Japan once previously, this trip in many ways allowed me to experience and view various cultural traditions and societal practices as if for the very first time. Through the friendships I made with wonderful, intelligent people, and the insight I gained from their opinions, it only further solidified my decision to one day work in a place where I can help foster cross-cultural communication and understanding on a worldwide scale. I am so proud of what we accomplished as a delegation during JASC 71, and I can’t wait to create that kind of supportive, creative, and challenging environment for the future JASC 72 delegates.
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Emily Marlowe
Email: jasc72.emarlowe@gmail.com

Hi everyone! My name is Emily Marlowe and I am from Tokyo, Japan. I am a junior at International Christian University, but currently studying at the University of California Santa Barbara as an exchange student for the 2019-2020 Academic year. At my home university, I am majoring in sociology, and studying American politics as my minor. I am half American half Japanese but spent my entire life in Japan. During my stay in California, I will primarily be studying Asian American studies as it is not taught at my home universities. I belong to a school’s dance crew back in Tokyo where I met the most inspiring and passionate personals in my school. I am also a member of an organization that provides platforms for exchange students and the local students to interact and learn about Japanse culture. Outside my school, I have been teaching English to senior high school students at a prep school for the competitive Japanse college entrance examinations. My hobbies include jogging, listening to music and podcast, traveling and looking for good food. My JASC experience as a delegate has not only allowed me to learn about people that I never thought I was going to have a connection but also, it enlightened and opened up my mind to start to care about something I could not relate before. The irreplaceable memories, such as seriously discussing topics from cultural appropriation to romance in the Japanse hot spring while naked, is something that I would carry with me for the rest of my life. I am honored to be a part of JASC 72 and work with my fellow 72nd Executive Committee members and provide a life-changing JASC experience to the future 72nd JASCers! I am looking forward to sharing this JASC experience with you all!.
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Celinda Chang
Email:jasc72.cchang@gmail.com

Hi! My name is Celinda Chang and I am a senior at Tulane University in New Orleans, LA, double majoring in Asian Studies and Health and Wellness with the School of Liberal Arts Management Minor (SLAMM). I studied abroad in my junior year for 10 months at International Christian University in Tokyo through Middlebury Schools Abroad as a Boren Scholar and Freeman-ASIA scholar, where I studied and immersed in Japanse language and culture, travelled, and participated in clubs like traditional Japanese dance. I’ve been studying Japanese since high school, and as a Chinese American (Hong Kong and Taiwan) from Los Angeles I can speak Mandarin conversationally, but I am hoping to improve these languages and learn even more. On campus I’m a Peer Advisor at Tulane’s Office of Study Abroad, treasurer of Tulane Water Polo Club and part of the Kaiwa Club, Tulane University Vietnamese Association (TUVA), and the Asian American Student Union (AASU). My hobbies include synchronized swimming, dance, and music, and I absolutely love penguins.

Participating in JASC 71 was an adventure. It challenged me academically and personally, as I navigated layers of culture shock and reverse culture shock at the same time through forming relationships and engaging with intelligent and diverse people from a variety of backgrounds, as well as sites and institutions throughout Japan. JASC 71 pushed me to reflect on myself and who I am as a student, Asian American, and leader in today’s day and age. JASC 71 helped me gain the confidence to speak up in discussions, to present and ask questions in front of large audiences, and to believe in myself. As an EC I hope to shape and share these kinds of experiences and to open doors for others to learn and grow. I hope to see you at JASC 72!
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Ryuichiro Suzuki
Email: jasc72.rsuzuki@gmail.com

My name is Ryuichiro Suzuki, but I go by Scooter in JASC and in school. I am a sophomore at Akita International University, and I am currently a student at George Washington University as an exchange from AIU. I major in Global Business, but I chose that by tossing a coin, so actually, I am not that passionate about business. I am currently studying mostly around International Affairs especially about military forces. You know, what business majors take. Also, I have a big interest in computer science and I would like to pursue that as my career. And as a hobby, I like to read articles about science, especially quantum physics. In short, I am interested in many things, other than business.

I was born in Tokyo but moved to London when I was in primary school. After spending several years in Britain, I moved to Slovenia and lived there for two years. After that, I moved to Ehime prefecture in western Japan for high school, then moved to Akita for university. Having lived in many places, I love sharing my affection to every city that I have lived, and also, I love hearing those stories from others. One unique thing about JASC is that I get to hear many stories of many cities from the delegates because we gather people from a variety of places. Also, now that I have friends all over Japan and America, I now get to visit many other cities, which is one of the most significant advantages you get in JASC.

I am looking forward to meeting with another 56 interesting individuals from a variety of places in JASC 72!
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Alec Mesropian
Email:jasc72.amesropian@gmail.com

Hello! My name is Alec Mesropian, and I am a junior at the University of California, Berkeley in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am currently majoring in Global Studies with a particular concentration in Global Development. My region of specialization is Asia, especially East Asia, and I am presently in my third year of Japanese language studies! Besides Japanese and English, I also speak Armenian! At UC Berkeley, I am a Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholar. In the summer of 2018, I interned at First Light Farms in New Zealand, an international producer and exporter of high-quality grass-fed wagyu beef and venison. As a result of this internship, I was able to both gain a better understanding of international business practices as well as improve my knowledge of world affairs in the Asia-Pacific region. In the summer of 2019, prior to participating in JASC 71, I interned at the United Nations in New York City on the NGO-side of multilateral affairs with the Armenian Relief Society. Over the course of my time at the UN, I gained new insights into a wide variety of topics ranging from sustainable development to international conflict resolution!

I was initially inspired to become an American delegate for JASC 71 after hearing of its intense focus on U.S.-Japan relations, a topic that interests me greatly. However, the actual experience of JASC blew me away even more and ended up being a far greater and more rewarding experience than previously anticipated. Aside from its excellent academic and professional development programming, JASC has introduced me to some of the most fascinating and down-to-earth people I have ever met! I am honored to call them my friends.

I am looking forward to serving on the 72nd Executive Committee and cannot wait to meet next year’s eager delegates!
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Kerry Walker
Email:jasc72.kwalker@gmail.com

Hello everyone! My name is Kerry Walker and I am a Junior at Smith College in Massachusetts, studying abroad at Doshisha University in Kyoto for the 2019-2020 academic year. I am majoring in East Asian Languages and Literatures (concentrating on Japan) and also take classes in German Studies. At Smith, some of my hobbies include playing bass clarinet in the Wind Ensemble, Viola da Gamba in a consort, and working on a special studies project making light curves of transiting exoplanets using our 16” telescope. I have held council positions such as Head of New Students and Vice President for my dorm, and conducted research projects not only in astronomy, but also Exophonic Literature and German Film Studies. In my free time, I love to cross-country ski, play soccer or futsal, cook/bake, listen to music, and study languages. My passion for languages stems from the time I have spent living in Germany throughout my life, and for this reason, one of my favorite things to do is to experience and learn about new languages and cultures, especially through interactions with people!

JASC 71 was one of the most rewarding things I have ever done, not only because I felt challenged academically, but also because I was able to form meaningful relationships with so many of my fellow delegates. The level of understanding and respect exchanged during our discussions on the issues of today’s world and the Japan-America relationship was something I had never experienced before, and helped to create some of the most deep and intellectual conversations I have ever had. I am so thankful to have been able to join this community of bright and passionate young people, and I am excited to help facilitate these kinds of interactions in JASC 72!
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