Public Relations Office October 28, 2014
School Motto “Mastery for Service”
KG’s Ideals for its Graduates
KG’s Ideals for its University
Kwansei Gakuin, as a learning community based on the principles of Christianity, inspires its members to seek their life missions, and cultivates them to be creative and capable world citizens who embody its motto, "Mastery for Service," by transforming society with compassion and integrity.
By describing Kwansei Gakuin as a “learning community,” we understand that education and research are collaborative endeavors. KG was founded on “the principles of Christianity,” and these principles continue as the core of its existence. This refers to learning about the theological and cultural aspects of Christianity, including the significance of Jesus Christ, but it also means that all the goals and values of this community are firmly rooted in Christian ideals.Human rights, peace, respect for nature, social justice, and cross-cultural understanding are prime examples of such values that guide our studies and life together.
Through this educational environment, all the members, who include students and their families, faculty,staff, and alumni, are motivated to seek new knowledge, and the full life that is most suited to each, based on individual talents, interests, and abilities, as well as social needs. “Life missions” also include vocations in Christian Ministry, one of the original courses at Kwansei Gakuin, and this training continues as an important element of the Christian principles. The content of a KG education nurtures people to develop social, moral, and academic skills that allow them to participate creatively around the world, and take leadership as agents of change in the societies where they live, thus actualizing the ideal of “world citizen.” Like Kwansei Gakuin’s founder, Walter Russell Lambuth, world citizens have the skills to communicate and empathize with others, and then take responsibility for creating a better world. KG’s motto, “Mastery for Service,” is explained further by emphasizing that its motivation must be the care and concern for others.
"Mastery for Service," the school motto of Kwansei Gakuin reflects the ideal for all its members to master their abundant God-given gifts to serve their neighbors, society and the world.
“… But having become masters we desire not to inflate, and enrich ourselves for our own sake, but to render some useful service to humanity in order that the world may be better for our having lived in it. … Our ideal of the scholar is … (one) whose desire for knowledge is a desire to equip himself to render better service to humanity. …” (C.J.L. Bates『商光』, 1915)
Kwansei Gakuin’s school motto, “Mastery for Service,” was proposed by the fourth Chancellor, Dr. C.J.L Bates (1877-1963). Since being first introduced in 1912, it has been sung in the school song, “Sora no Tsubasa,” was carved into the emblem on the clock tower, endured war and campus disputes, and continues to be repeated to the present day as a truly descriptive expression of Kwansei Gakuin’s stance.
A “master” usually means someone who directs or commands others, but at our school, it means a person who, in terms of humanity, learning, and daily life, has an accomplished character, or as Dr. Bates said, is a “Self-Master.” From that base, “service” is understood, in our school’s Christian context, as “service to God,” the starting point for a life dedicated to serving neighbors, society, and others.
A way of life that is devoted to creating a better world by utilizing one’s inalienable gifts; that is the ideal that we members of Kwansei Gakuin continue to seek as we sing in the school song, “Shining freedom, Mastery for Service.”
To produce graduates with a global perspective, care for others and a commitment to social transformation, who have both clear insight and a strong sense of ethics, enabling them to go out into the world confident in their ability to achieve their high ideals
The creation of a community ‘without fences’ for learning and research
Kwansei Gakuin University aims to be a ‘learning community without fences’ based on the principles of Christianity, which, through education encompassing students’ total personality and creative cutting-edge research, will send out into the world truly global citizens who are both capable and caring.
In 1929, C. J. L. Bates, the 4th Chancellor of Kwansei Gakuin, stood in the newly-established Nishinomiya Uegahara Campus, and gazing over its open expanse, surrounded by fruit orchards, remarked “We have no fences.” At that time their were no physical fences separating the campus from its surroundings, but there were also no metaphorical ‘fences’ separating teachers and staff from students, or one academic discipline from another. Kwansei Gakuin was a true ‘learning community’, conscious of no barriers between the University and society, or even of the frontiers between nations. It was overflowing with an eagerness to create a new society.
Today we live in an environment where, as a result of globalization and the rapid progress of information technology, people and nations are becoming increasingly interdependent. Nevertheless, the ‘fences’ that still exist between different races, cultures, religions and nations continue to create the frictions and conflicts that bedevil contemporary society.
It is against this background that Kwansei Gakuin University will continue to train students possessing a high level of academic ability and a deep sympathy for others, who have both the will and the ability to contribute fully to the betterment of human society.
Firmly founded on the principles of Christianity, Kwansei Gakuin University is determined to realize in the contemporary world a true ‘learning community without fences’, where all its members – students, faculty and staff – take the initiative in learning from one another.