Apply to a Unique Graduate Program

OIST's Graduate School launches a new admissions website for prospective students

Imagine pushing the existing frontiers of knowledge without the traditional constraints of a Ph.D. program in the sciences. Imagine working with a world class faculty, being fully funded, and having the freedom to choose a particular laboratory for your thesis research and obtaining deep knowledge of your chosen field, but with substantial opportunities for cross-disciplinary interactions.

Also, imagine living and working on a subtropical island that has been on the crossroads of international cultural and commercial exchange for centuries, with a level of marine and geographic biodiversity that would have stunned Darwin. Then, picture yourself doing research in state-of-the art facilities, inside stunning buildings made of stone blocks reminiscent of East Asian castles, connected via skywalks and pulsing with scientific interaction.

Apply to the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST). 

OIST's Graduate School's new admissions website lets prospective students know about the superb opportunities for research, graduate studies, and student life in Okinawa, including impressions of current PhD students at OIST. 

OIST has a unique program that fosters a renaissance spirit of free inquiry. It encourages students to develop a strong foundation in their chosen discipline but without traditional departmental barriers to interdisciplinary interaction. Under the guidance of an Academic Mentor, OIST students construct their own curriculum and experience different laboratories before deciding on a thesis topic.

"The basic idea is still to provide a solid foundation in one discipline. What we do differently is foster an environment where researchers can effectively communicate with those in other fields. We do not have the artificial administrative and architectural barriers that get in the way of that communication, we have opportunities for exchange which can lead to creativity and innovation," said Jeff Wickens, Dean of OIST's Graduate School. 

OIST students and faculty are from around the world and OIST builds cultural bridges as it builds scientific ones. While English is the language of education and research, English and Japanese lessons are free for OIST students, staff as well as family members.

OIST currently accepts applications around the year. One of the special features in the OIST admissions process is that shortlisted candidates are flown in for admissions workshops, where they undergo a series of interviews with faculty,  mingle with the current OIST students and researchers, and glimpse what living in Okinawa is like. There are several admissions workshops throughout the year.  

The campus and surrounding areas can also be virtually toured here.

Come help build a new scientific renaissance in a lush tropical paradise!

OIST’s first graduating class is expected in 2017.

By Joykrit Mitra

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