Fumitaka MIYOSHI giving a speech on “The Reason We Are Here”

P5 Session #04のトピックは、”The Reason We Are Here”(私たちがここにいる理由)です。

Fumitaka MIYOSHI 君(生命科学部3回生)によるスピーチです。「成功」「失敗」「挑戦」、大学生がよく耳にするこれら3つの言葉、彼独自の解釈とは?


Good afternoon, everyone. My name is Fumitaka MIYOSHI. Today, I am very happy to stand here.

I am junior in College of Life Sciences. Since I entered this university, I have often heard three words. Those three words are success, failure, and challenge.

“You should master these skills to succeed in job hunting.” “College students who don’t have their girlfriends are losers.” “Keep challenging to your dream!” These phrases are often used and heard many times in college students’ life, but “Success, failure, challenge” Do you know the meanings of these three words? I mean, have you ever given a serious thought about their meanings?

First of all, “What is your success in your life?” “Go to a big company and earn much money? Research to win a Novel prize? Go out with many cute girls?” Of course, these things are remarkable, awesome achievements, but if these things mean success in our life, I haven’t achieved any of them. But, to me, these things are just the part of processes. I can’t say these things are success.

Next, what is failure to you? “ Not being rich? Or spending Christmas holidays without a girlfriend?” You may think these things are failures, but, again, to me these things are also just the part of processes. It is true these things are painful, but I don’t call them failures.

Finally, what is challenge to you? Everyone would agree with my definition. Challenge means we have what we want to achieve in our minds and keep trying to do something for what we want to be, but I wanna put one thing to this challenge. Challenge is the situation which we keep trying and don’t stop trying, no matter how hard things are on the way to our dream.

When I was sophomore, I thought I took many challenges. I took a trip by bicycle. I have been to various countries all over the world. From these experiences, I learned many things, but now I come to realize that these experiences were actually not challenges, because these experiences didn’t have hard things to achieve. Of course, there were some minor troubles, but they were not painful and not hard. If there had been unbearably hard things in them, I would have stopped these activities.

I had the turning point which made me realize that these activities belonged to fun, not to challenge. This turning point was a research I did in the U.S.

I came to crossroads in my life this summer as a junior student. In other words, I had to decide and choose what I will do in my future. I have three choices; go to graduate school, do job hunting or study abroad. I had hesitated to make a decision. On the other hand, my friends made up their minds one after another and they started walking on their own ways. I felt like they left me behind and far away from me.

At that time, I took one action. That is, studying in the U.S. to research in my field, life science. I’m really interested in a basic research of this field. So, I knew it would be hard for me, but I tried. I went to a professor and asked him to help me research in the U.S. ” Fortunately, he introduced Dr. Eri, who works in National institutes of Health, NIH, in the U.S. By sending her many e-mails in English, I got a chance that I worked in NIH during the summer.

However, NIH had never had Japanese students before I went there. So I couldn’t get enough information. I didn’t even know how I would be treated there. What can I do for NIH? As you expected, my life in NIH was not so successful and the hardest time. Especially, I had a lot of difficulties in the differences in technical skills between Japan and the U.S. People who work in NIH use totally different skills in experiments and many different machines that I can’t use. So, what I learned in Ritsumeikan didn’t work well. Moreover, I had a big trouble in listening to what they said. Every day, I had to do preparation and review late at night, but I failed my experiments many times that I can’t count. I felt my ability so poor and out of reach with my skills.

To tell the truth, I had felt more awful than I expected before I went there. This challenge is…... Some people may say, “It was the waste of your time or this challenge was completely failure.”

It is true that I had hard time, but the researcher told me the words that I couldn’t forget. The word is, “Good people are good because they come to wisdom through failure.” She told me the words’ meaning, which is that excellent scientists have failed more than usual scientists and then they learned many things from failures and they have more information to success.

Since I learned the words, I have realized many excellent scientists had many failures, but they save many lives all over the world. So, I made up my mind. I wanna be a researcher to save many lives with what I have leaned. The job of researchers is more tough and harder than I expected. Every day is a successive of failures. For me, this is tough challenge, but I wanna try!! After this experience, I read books on my field little by little. I also had the first step toward my dream like my friends.

Now, I realized success is the skill that you keep challenging to your goals which you decided to reach. In this sense, trying to do challenge is actually already success. The opposite meaning of success is not failure. Failure is that you can’t find what you want to achieve, no matter how hard it is.

I noticed that many people, my friends, teachers, family, Ritsumeikan University help and support me; this university gave me money to go there, teachers checked my English and introduced NIH to me, my friends and family gave me advice. If it had not been for their support, I couldn’t have had such a great chance that I grew up to be like this. Next, It’s my turn. I wanna support and save many people in my field with what I have learned.

At the end of my presentation, I’d like to tell you the reason why I am here. It is because I keep trying to do challenge to my goal which I decided. I am not rich and don’t have a girlfriend, but I strongly believe I succeeded. Thank you very much.