I would like to express my congratulations to all of the students today who are entering NAIST.

 In what has been an unprecedented year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you must have gone through many trying times. I imagine many of you had sad or lonely experiences during the final year of your undergraduate studies. You have made many sacrifices and successfully finished the previous chapter of your lives, so please allow us all to extend the warmest welcome to you as you enter the gates of NAIST.

 I believe it was with a bit of anxiety and great expectations that you chose NAIST and that you want to produce outstanding research achievements in this exceptional environment. They say that good research has no simple answer. You must grapple with research whose answers even your advisors may not know. Rather than waiting for things, you will need to act of your own volition seek them out. On the other side of all the hard work, you will be able to see a spectacular view that no one in the world has ever seen before. Maintain a sense of challenge, not fearing the mistakes you may make, and persevere in your activities. NAIST will surely reward your efforts.

 Through your studies and research, we sincerely hope that your campus life at NAIST will be one of the most memorable experiences of your life. In particular, I believe the teachers, peers--both senior or junior to you--and friends you will at NAIST will become your lifelong treasure. As of today, NAIST has conferred over 10,000 degrees to students from all the research fields combined, many of whom are active in universities, research institutes, and leading corporations both domestically and abroad. The NAIST Alumni Association maintains a network of our graduates and is planning various programs to foster friendship between current NAIST students and graduates. I believe that there will be many instances after graduation when you feel a sense of pride towards your experience at NAIST and many opportunities where you feel your connections to NAIST, and your gratitude for these will likely grow over the years. I hope all of you will all join the alumni association as you enter NAIST and make full use of these ties.

 The NAIST Alumni Association and is developing various programs designed to. After completing your courses, I feel that there will be many instances when you will have a sense of pride in your studies at NAIST and many opportunities where you realize your connections with NAIST. Gratitude for this will only grow over time. Now that you are a member of this prestigious institution, I hope all of you will join the Alumni Association and make full use of these ties.

 We are living in a period of uncertainty. Artificial intelligence is changing the face of the world, while environmental problems and energy issues are worsening rapidly. In the post-COVID-19 era, what used to be normal will no longer be applicable. Seize upon this chance to increase your potential at NAIST and then take roles guiding humanity into the future.

 In closing, I would like to once again congratulate you on your entrance to NAIST.

Chairperson of the NAIST Alumni Association