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Published on Mar 20, 2014
Tomo is in his first year studying Information Technology at Touhokugakuin University. Born and raised in the Miyagi area, which was heavily affected by the March 11th Earthquake, Tomo underwent a stark change in his life, starting from when the Earthquake hit in his first year of high school. He was forced to live in a refugee camp where he volunteered in distributing rice and cleaning disaster sites. This experience spurred a new spirit of leadership within him: "(translated) When all members of my basketball team who suffered major changes in their lives were stressed out from the earthquake, I found myself unable unite everyone like I used to...from that experience, I felt I lacked ability, and that feeling has become my motivation to understand what it takes to be a better leader." Tomo is very excited that his first time out of country will be to Seattle for the iLEAP SIIS TOMODACHI program. He is looking forward to strengthening his leadership and learning about social innovation while being here.