2016 Essay Contest


In order to participate in the Princess Takamado Essay Contest, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be an undergraduate student enrolled at a Japanese university.
  • Must not have spent more than 1 year (combined) in an English-speaking country.
  • Must be of Japanese nationality.
  • Neither parent is a native speaker of English.
  • Recent university graduates (within the last year) are also eligible to apply.
  • Minimum TOEFL® score of 70 iBT™, 5.5 IELTS™ or equivalent (as required by the University of Alberta's English Language Program)

Essay Theme

Please choose one of the following topics:

  1. Write a letter to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. In the letter, describe what initiatives you'd like for him to take in the economic and political cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region. 
  2. Should Japanese university students engage in study abroad? How can this experience be beneficial for Japan-Canada collaboration? 
  3. Recently, Japanese popular culture has made a great impact in the world mainly through games, pop-music, and manga. How can culture be used to build ties between Japan, Canada, and other countries?

Essay Requirements

Essay submissions must adhere to the following requirements:

  • Word limit of 800 - 1,000 words in English.
  • All submissions must be typed and double-spaced.
  • Entries that are over or under the word limit will be disqualified.
  • Entries must be original material not submitted to any other publication or organization. Your essay MUST be signed by an instructor at your university in order to certify the originality of your submission.

Evaluation Criteria

Essays will be judged based on the following criteria:

  • Relevance
  • Creativity/Originality
  • Expression
  • Overall Impression

Please note that essays will be judged mainly based on ideas and originality, not correctness of English grammar.

Application Procedure »