TOMODACHI, SoftBank Announce 2013 Leadership Program

  TOMODACHI, SoftBank Announce 2013 Leadership Program

 ~100 Japanese High Schoolers from Tohoku Will Be Given Opportunity to Study
                               in California~

Business Wire

TOKYO -- February 19, 2013

The TOMODACHI Initiative and SoftBank are pleased to announce the “TOMODACHI
Summer 2013 SoftBank Leadership Program.” Fully funded by SoftBank, this
program will send approximately 100 Japanese high school students from the
disaster-affected prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima to the
University of California, Berkeley from July 22-August 12, 2013 for an
intensive three-week course focused on global leadership development and
community service. Participating students will explore methods for
strengthening their local communities, while gaining a further understanding
of American society and culture through homestays, volunteer activities, and
exchanges with U.S. high school students.

Haruna Shiraiwa and her classmates at a business meeting with H.I.S. Co., Ltd.
(Photo: Business Wire ...

Haruna Shiraiwa and her classmates at a business meeting with H.I.S. Co., Ltd.
(Photo: Business Wire)

TOMODACHI and SoftBank inaugurated the program in 2012, and many of the
students from that year are now applying what they learned for the benefit of
their home communities.

In recognition of this important exchange program, U.S. Ambassador to Japan
John V. Roos stated, “I am delighted that TOMODACHI’s partnership with
SoftBank will continue this year. There is nothing more important for the
future of the U.S.-Japan relationship than connecting the younger generations
of our two countries, and this successful program provides the opportunity for
our young people to get to know each other while learning valuable skills for
their future careers.”

“Visiting the U.S. when I was a high school student and studying
inBerkeleychanged my life completely,” said Masayoshi Son, Chairman and CEO
of SoftBank. “You can change the future by challenging yourself. I sincerely
hope that high school students participating in this program will learn about
leadership andmake the most of their experience in California for their own
future and success.”

Interested students are encouraged to apply for program via the link below.
The due date for applications is April 15, 2013. Participants will be
finalized on May 17, 2013.

Application link: http://usjapantomodachi.ayusajapan.org

                                    ###

     Testimonials from Participants in the TOMODACHI Summer 2012 SoftBank
                              Leadership Program

After  participating in last year’s TOMODACHI-SoftBank Leadership Program,
Haruna Shiraiwa developed a proposal with fellow students to help bolster the
local economy of her hometown of Iwaki City in Fukushima Prefecture. The
students worked with the Japanese travel agency H.I.S. Co., Ltd. to institute
a unique series of sightseeing tours designed to increase the number of
visitors, and the travel agency is preparing to commercialize the idea. “I
learned about leadership during the TOMODACHI-SoftBank program,” Ms. Shiraiwa
said. “When I applied those lessons to my hometown, I saw the challenges
clearly. Things are difficult now, but we want to turn this dream of a
business into a reality.” H.I.S. President Akira Hirabayashi also suggested
that the students appear in a TV commercial for the company; the commercial
was filmed and will soon be aired in the Kanto region. Ms. Shiraiwa commented,
“During the program in the United States, I learned the importance of working
as a team and cooperating with others. When people help each other, we can all
become leaders.”

Kamaishi City in Iwate Prefecture was the location for another example of
leadership from an alumnus of the program. Miku Onodera organized a
“candlelight night” event for local children who had lost their playgrounds
due to the construction of temporary housing facilities, and all of the
proceeds from the event were donated to Kamaishi City. Ms. Onodera noted,
“What I learned from the program in the United States was that great leaders
have great personalities. We need to be thoughtful, polite, and respect the
opinions of others in order to achieve our common goals.” The mayor of
Kamaishi City subsequently invited Ms. Onodera and her fellow students to
participate in an open discussion about the reconstruction of the city, during
which the students expressed their ideas and proposals. “I would like to
continue to organize more activities in Kamaishi,” said Ms. Onodera. “It is
important for the future of the city.”

About TOMODACHI Initiative

TOMODACHI is a public-private partnership, led by the United States Government
and the U.S.-Japan Council and supported by the Japanese Government, that
supports Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake and invests in
the next generation of Japanese and Americans in ways that strengthen cultural
and economic ties and deepen the friendship between the United States and
Japan over the long-term.

About SoftBank

SoftBank Corp. was established in 1981 by its current Chairman & CEO Masayoshi
Son and has based its business growth on the Internet. SoftBank Group is
currently engaged in various businesses in the information industry, including
mobile communications, broadband services, fixed-line telecommunications, and
Internet Culture. In terms of consolidated results for fiscal 2011, net sales
increased 6.6% year on year to ¥3.2 trillion, operating income increased 7.3%
to ¥675.2 billion, and net income rose 65.4% to ¥313.7 billion.

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Contact:

SoftBank Corp.
Press Office, +81 3 6889 2300
or
Sard Verbinnen &Co
Jim Barron, 212-687-8080
John Christiansen, 415-618-8750
 
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