About Sophia University
Sophia University (上智大学, Jōchi daigaku) was founded by the Jesuits in 1913. The idea of the Sophia University dates back to 1549 when St. Francis Xavier, a Jesuit, landed in Kagoshima with the hope of building a Catholic University which would bring together the best of Asian and Western intellectual traditions. The idea became real when 3 members of the Society of Jesus came to Japan with the mission of establishing an international university in 1908. In 1913, the Japanese Ministry of Education approved the founding of the new educational institution (上智学院, Jōchi gakuin) was established. There were only 15 students enrolled in the first class. In 1949, the university became the first academic institution to offer program taught entirely in English, and established a reputation as a school offering international programs in Japan.
Today, Sophia University had grown to be one of Japan's prominent private universities with eight faculties and 10 graduate programs. The university has 4 campuses: Yotsuya Main Campus, Ichigaya Campus, Shakujii Campus (mainly for the Faculty of Theology), and Hadano Campus (Junior College).
Sophia University was designed as one of Japan's Global 30 institutions. Created by Japan's Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology the "Global 30" Project Establishes Core Universities for Internationalization to function as core schools for receiving and educating international students. In 2009, 13 universities were selected. These core universities have established English degree programs and will play a major role in dramatically boosting the number of international students educated in Japan as well as Japanese students studying abroad. Sophia has long had a international program in which courses are taught in English and thus has one of the most well developed curricula in this area.
Sophia is one of Japan's premiere universities for Japanese language study with a full range of short and longer term courses offered at all levels of Japanese language proficiency.