Visits from Global Intellectuals

People welcomed by Yotsuya Campus

Sophia University has hosted many lectures and symposiums, inviting dignitaries from various countries and fields.

*Position names are as of the time of the visit

Pope Francis

Pope Francis delivered a message to about 700 students, faculty, and staff in Room 101, Building 6, titled “Message from Pope Francis to Those Studying at the ‘University of the Seat of Wisdom.’” On December 18, 2017, he enjoyed a dialogue with Sophia University students in the “Let’s Talk with Pope Francis” project via video line. (2019.11.26)

Arturo Sosa, Superior General of the Society of Jesus


Jesuit Superior General Arturo Sosa was invited to deliver a special lecture, “Jesuit Higher Education in the World”. The Society of Jesus, the founding parents of the University, are a religious order of the Catholic Church established about 500 years ago, and Pope Francis was a member of the order. Approximately 350 people, including students, faculty, and staff, attended and listened to the lecture. (2019.7.31)

Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, President of the 73rd session of the General Assembly of the United nations


Ms. Fernanda Espinosa Garces visited Sophia University for a few days in Japan before assuming the presidency of the UN General Assembly.(2018.8.31)

His Excellency Mr. Silence Dlomo, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of South Africa


A lecture was given by Mr. Silence Dromo, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of South Africa to Japan, on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Nelson Mandela, the first black president of South Africa. (2018.5.21)

Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations


Special Lecture “Global Challenges: The Role of Human Security” featuring Mr. Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations. After his lecture, he met with about 30 students. They engaged in enthusiastic exchanges on a wide range of topics, including conflict mediation and the North Korean nuclear crisis. (2017.12.14)

Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees


Lecture on refugee issues with Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Sophia University has concluded an educational partnership agreement with the UNHCR Representation in Japan, and participates in an agreement on refugee higher education projects that accepts one UNHCR-recommended refugee each year as a regular scholarship student.(2017.11.19)

Gerald Curtis, Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Columbia University

Let’s Talk World – U.S. President-Elect Trump,” Curtis, one of America’s leading scholars of Japanese politics, reflected on the U.S. presidential election.(2016.11.18)

Joseph Nye, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense

He spoke on the U.S. presidential election titled “The 2016 U.S. Presidential Election and the Future of U.S.-Japan Relations, Joseph Nye White Heat Debate.” The popularity of Dr. Nye, an international political scientist who has advocated the importance of “soft power” in international relations and is well known as the co-author of the “Armitage Nye Report” that provided guidelines for US-Japan relations from a nonpartisan standpoint, and the high interest in this topic were evident. (2016.10.26)

Caroline Kennedy, Ambassador of the United States

U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy visited Sophia University Yotsuya Campus and held a round table discussion with 12 students. Based on the issues from the G7 Ise-Shima Summit, opinions were exchanged in English on four topics (public health, epidemics, international exchange in education, and women’s empowerment).(2016.6.2)

Mother Teresa

In a lecture titled “What is Beautiful?” she urged Sophia students and others to cherish those close to them who have a hunger in their hearts amidst material wealth.(1981.4.26)

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