Since Saitama Prefectural University (SPU) opened the School of Health and Social Services in Koshigaya, Saitama, in 1999, it has been positioning itself to contribute to the promotion of social integration and the realization of an inclusive society in the fields of public health, medical care, and social welfare.
To achieve this goal, we educate our students to be individuals who can act independently with a critical spirit, not only using their specialized knowledge and skills but also reflecting a well-rounded character, ethical principles, and lessons from our predecessors. Therefore, we place emphasis on fostering students’ resolution, intelligence and communication ability to prepare them to face “unanswered questions” or “questions without answers.”
At the undergraduate level, the School of Health and Social Services has five departments including eight divisions that provide a wide variety of specialized courses relating to nursing, rehabilitation, social work, child science, behavioral sciences, laboratory sciences and oral health sciences, while all students are required to take common courses categorized in the cluster of liberal arts courses and the cluster of healthcare and social services courses to broaden their horizons and deepen their learning.
Among these courses, those relating to interprofessional collaboration represent the educational mission of SPU. They are aimed at helping our students, who are future members of interdisciplinary healthcare teams, to understand a common philosophy needed for human services professionals, and to appreciate features of individuals, groups and communities that are in need of healthcare and social services. For example, in courses such as “Practicum: Human Care” in the first year and “Interprofessional Work Practicum” in the fourth year, our students are grouped into teams consisting of individuals with different majors, and they participate in problem-solving practicums at approximately 160 facilities throughout Saitama Prefecture so that they can gain hands-on experiences in interdisciplinary collaboration.
Regarding postgraduate education, a master’s degree program was established in 2010, and a doctoral program in 2015. We emphasize the training of highly-skilled professionals and researchers, and we have been disseminating to the rest of the world the results of our basic and clinical studies, our empirical studies and studies for policy proposal regarding community health and social welfare.
SPU also attaches great significance to international contributions and exchanges. Our students and faculty members have been providing active humanitarian assistance to victims of overseas disasters and to foreign residents in Japan. SPU offers exchange programs with universities in Europe, Australia and China.
Furthermore, SPU functions as a kind of think tank in the practice and establishment of healthcare and social welfare policies. SPU has been contributing to communities in cooperation with the central, prefectural and municipal governments, as well as various NPOs. SPU is also known for providing continuing education to healthcare professionals, which is supported by our research findings and by distinguished faculty who has both academic and practical expertise.
We are determined to continue our efforts in promoting interprofessional collaboration and integration in the fields of healthcare and social services in cooperation with our highly motivated faculty, researchers and students in order to contribute to local communities. We appreciate your continuing support for our activities.
President, Saitama Prefectural University