International services staff, students attend Japan-Northeast Indiana Summit

FORT WAYNE — Two staff members from Trine University’s Office of International Services and three exchange students from Japan attended the Japan-Northeast Indiana Summit held Feb. 16 at the Grand Wayne Center in Fort Wayne.

David Colbert, executive director of international services, and Mari McHenry, director of international community services, traveled to the event with students Yukina Suemura, Rika Kobayashi and Azusa Sakuma.

The event was hosted by the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership; the Consulate-General of Japan in Chicago; the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and JTL America.

The Regional Partnership says more than 280 Japanese-owned businesses currently operate in Indiana, and the state has the highest Japanese investment per capita in the United States. Japanese companies have 24 locations in 10 counties throughout northeast Indiana, employing 32,000.

Top photo: From left, Rika Kobayashi; Theresa Kulczak, executive director of Japan-America Society of Indiana, Inc.; Ralph Inforzato, executive director of the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO); Yukina Suemura;  Yoshi Ogawa, Japanese service coordinator of Japan-America Society of Indiana, Inc.; Azusa Sakuma and Mari McHenry.

Japan sister cities
Dorothy Kikkata, a member of the board of directors for the Fort Wayne Sister Cities International, Inc., center, with, from left, Rika Kobayashi, Yukina Suemura, Mari McHenry and Azusa Sakuma.
Japan consul
From left, exchange students Yukina Suemura and Rika Kobayashi; Consul-General Naoki Ito; Mari McHenry, director of international community services; and David Colbert, executive director of international services.
Japan mayor
Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry, second from right, poses with exchange students, from left, Azusa Sakuma, Rika Kobayashi and Yukina Suemura.