The HBS Online Tokyo chapter hosted a special encouraging hour to global members on August 7, during the time of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, which have been held under extending COVID-19 state of emergency in the Tokyo area. It was a historical moment, one year extension of the Summer Olympics and Paralympics, and most games were held without general audiences.
Originally many plans of cultural events in Japan for tourism did not make it as originally planned due to the pandemic and Japanese people, including students, still, live an inconvenient life.
Nevertheless, we hosted the event to encourage people living in Tokyo and the Japan area, as well as all others who wish to celebrate the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics game and tourism in Japan.
In the beginning of our community event, as One Harvard community, we global members praised a Tokyo 2020 Olympic medalist, Gabby Thomas '19, United States, from the Harvard community.
Thomas is the first Harvard woman to win two medals at the Olympic Games, winning her bronze medal in the 200 meters and silver medal running the anchor leg of the United States 4x100 meter team.
Then the Tokyo Chapter members introduced local cultures, music, manga, food, technologies, and sightseeing places including Tohoku, the Northeast area which had been affected by a great earthquake and tsunami in 2011, with warm feelings and compassion for those who could not come to other cultural events in Japan. From global members at the community event, we were told that Japan did a great job in this pandemic to host Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.
Before the start of Tokyo 2020 Olympics, various issues were globally discussed, such as human rights, gender issue, for example. Actually, we still have challenges but we hope to make a better society with more peaceful daily lives, by ending pandemic soon. When the pandemic is over, we invite you to explore the wonderful culture of Japan!