Building the TOMODACHI Generation Morgan Stanley Ambassadors Program

Building the TOMODACHI Generation Morgan Stanley Ambassadors Program

Uniting Japanese students to support the Tohoku region recovery, through teamwork and skills development. 

In 2011 one of the strongest earthquakes ever recorded was centered off the coast of Japan. Six years later, the Tohuku region is still recovering. You can help the area overcome critical challenges while gaining valuable career skills, like cross-cultural understanding, leadership, teamwork and critical thinking.

Building the TOMODACHI Generation: Morgan Stanley Ambassadors Program is an intensive, two-week program designed for Japanese students with an interest in leadership training, cross-cultural exchange, and entrepreneurial approaches to addressing social challenges. The program is a partnership between The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars (TWC), in Washington, D.C. and the U.S.-Japan Research Institute (USJI), and is administered by TWC. The program is funded solely by Morgan Stanley through the U.S.-Japan Council’s TOMODACHI Initiative. Between 2014 and 2016, prior to establishing the Ambassadors Program, Morgan Stanley joined with the Fund for Exchanges sponsors (Toyota Motor Corporation, Mitsubishi Corporation, and Hitachi, Ltd.) to support phase one of this program.


To be eligible for this seminar, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a Japanese citizen and hold a valid passport.
  • Be enrolled in one of the following universities during the program: Doshisha University, Keio University, Kyoto University, Kyushu University, Ritsumeikan University, Sophia University, The University of Tokyo, Tsukuba University or Waseda University. If you are studying abroad during the program, you are not eligible.
  • Demonstrate a desire to the contribute to reconstruction of the Tohoku region.

Program Components

During this two-week seminar, you'll take part in lectures, workshops, panel discussions and site visits. You'll engage with experts on civil society, build cross-sector partnerships and explore how to address social challenges. You'll work closely with other team members from Japan and the U.S. to identify an on-going challenge in the Tohoku region. Then leveraging what you learn, you'll develop a project to address that challenge and present it at the end of the seminar.

You'll gain key global skills like cross-cultural understanding, leadership, teamwork, critical thinking, communication and networking.

Program Cost

This is a fully funded seminar sponsored by Morgan Stanley through the U.S.-Japan Council’s TOMODACHI Initiative. Sponsorship covers the cost of the seminar, housing, transportation, most meals and basic health insurance. You will need spending money for incidental items or snacks (estimated $50 per week).

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Housing and Living

While in Washington, D.C., you'll stay in the exciting and bustling Logan Circle neighborhood, home to some of the city's best restaurants, cafes, stores and a short walk from the White House and other D.C. landmarks.


You will be staying at the Homewood Suites between Logan Circle and Scott Circle, just 5 minutes away from The Washington Center Headquarters, where most seminar sessions and activities will take place.

What to Pack

Please be prepared to pack the following:

  • personal toiletries
  • government-issued ID card
  • small folding umbrella
  • business professional attire for seminar sessions and site visits
  • casual attire for evenings and weekends
  • notebook and pens

Student Services

TWC staff will be available to make sure you have the support you need, any time day or night. Our disability services staff ensures that every participant has the tools they need to live comfortably, complete assignments and succeed in their work.

Academic Credit

There is no academic credit available for this seminar.

Dates and Deadlines

  • Check-In: February 16, 2019
  • Orientation: February 17, 2019
  • Seminar Begins: February 18, 2019
  • Seminar Ends: March 1, 2019
  • Check-Out: March 2, 2019
  • Debrief at Morgan Stanley in Tokyo: March 4, 2019

How to Apply

The application deadline for the 2019 Building the TOMODACHI Generation Morgan Stanley Ambassadors Program varies among campuses.

If you're not quite ready to apply or want to learn more about The Washington Center and our programs, please submit a Request For Information below.

Request for Information

Application Documents

You'll need to submit the following documents along with your application:

  • Statement of Purpose (in english)
  • Resumé (in english)
  • Letter(s) of Recommendation (optional, especially if the recommendations show the applicant’s connection to relief efforts in Tohoku)

Program Partners

About the TOMODACHI Initiative

The TOMODACHI Initiative is a public-private partnership between the U.S.-Japan Council and the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, with support from the Government of Japan. Born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake, TOMODACHI invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs. The initiative seeks to foster a “TOMODACHI Generation” of young American and Japanese leaders who are committed to and engaged in strengthening U.S.-Japan relations, appreciate each other’s countries and cultures, and possess the global skills and mindsets needed to contribute to and thrive in a more cooperative, prosperous, and secure world.  Visit the TOMODACHI Initiative for more information.

About Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley is a leading global financial services firm providing investment banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services. With offices in more than 41 countries, the Firm’s employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals. Visit Morgan Stanley for more information.

About the U.S. – Japan Research Institute (USJI)

Established in 2009, the U.S. – Japan Research Institute (USJI) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization located in Washington, D.C., jointly operated by Doshisha University, Keio University, Kyoto University, Kyushu University, Ritsumeikan University, Sophia University, The University of Tokyo, University of Tsukuba, and Waseda University. Our missions are centered on the development of the bilateral relationship between the United States and Japan, and include: conducting policy analysis and academic research; fostering the future generation of decision makers; and building a strong U.S.-Japanese local community. In order to achieve these missions, USJI holds events through the year, including seminars and lectures related to U.S.-Japan relations. USJI also strive to develop the future generation of policymakers in the bilateral relationship between the United States and Japan. Visit U.S. – Japan Research Institute (USJI) for more information.


What does the seminar schedule look like?

Week 1: 

  • Monday–Friday: You'll spend most of your time in workshops to help understanding the concept and role of civil society,
  • Saturday–Sunday: You'll take part in a weekend retreat which aims to enhance your leadership, teamwork and communication skills through a fun, outdoor adventure course 

Week 2:

  • Monday–Thursday: You'll hear from and interact with speakers from organizations operating within the civil society framework 
  • Friday: You'll present your civil society team project to an audience made up of Japanese university and business leaders convening in Washington, D.C. during USJI’s annual “USJI Week”


You can view TWC's Internship Policies here, which includes information on student conduct, billing, grades, and much more. All students will be expected to follow these policies so we encourage you to review them.