Chile Tomonkai

About the Chile Tomonkai

The Chile Tomonkai was established in December, 2008. At present, the number of members is about 35, which has been steadily increasing since 2012 (22 at that time), the last time when we were featured in this magazine. I believe we have seen this increase because our members have been playing an active part in society. One of the characteristics of our Tomonkai is that, recently, the number of young members involved in the development of metal resources has been increasing.

Our main activities are social gatherings, which are often held, and Waseda-Keio barbecues with the Chile Mitakai. Recently, we have been planning a golf competition, and we have been very active although we are living in the opposite side of the Earth from Japan. One of the characteristics of our Tomonkai is, and we are proud that, we members enjoy having a drink together, having established close relationships with each other, regardless of age or occupation. As a young member like me is saying this, it must be true. As Chief Secretary, I would like to make this Tomonkai even more active, while maintaining its good atmosphere.
Ryutaro Toi (Graduated in 2013, School of Creative Science and Engineering, Graduated in 2015 with a master’s degree, Graduate School of Creative Science and Engineering)
Shinya Suzuki (Graduated in 2013, School of Creative Science and Engineering, Graduated in 2015 with a master’s degree, Graduate School of Creative Science and Engineering)

A social gathering held every two months or so

The attractive points of Chile

As the shape of Chile is long and narrow, cut out by the Andes Mountains, there are various types of sightseeing spots, such as the Atacama desert area in the north, the Patagonian glacier area in the south, and Easter Island in the Pacific Ocean. We can fully enjoy outdoor sports such as skiing and fishing.

I thought on my first visit that the capital city, Santiago, closely resembled cities in Europe. Here in Santiago, the old town and the new town coexist in harmony. In the old town, the streets, where military coups took place in the 1970s, still remain. On the other hand, in the new town, we can observe many high-rise buildings, including one which is the tallest in Latin America.

Japanese people love the fact that there are many kinds of seafood, and fresh fruits and vegetables. In addition, wines are of high quality but cheap, and visiting wineries is an easily-accessible leisure activity. Bienvenido a Chile! (Welcome to Chile!)
Masahiro Akiba (Graduated in 1986, School of Commerce)

Torres del Paine National Park in Patagonia

Overlooking the Andes mountains from Santiago, the capital city

Message from the Chairperson

There is a long history of relations between Japan and Chile, and we celebrated the 120th anniversary of the conclusion of the Treaty of Amity, Commerce and Navigation in 2017. Those of you who like history might know that the prior name of the protected cruiser Izumi, which contributed to the great victory over Russia in the Battle of Tsushima in the Russo-Japanese War, was Esmeralda. Japan bought Esmeralda from the Chilean Navy in 1894. A long time has passed, and between Japan and a neighboring country located beyond the Pacific Ocean, Chile, the relationship between the Maritime Self-Defense Force and the Chilean Navy is still ongoing.

There are not many Japanese people here, however, we actively play roles in various industries including those related to mineral resources such as copper and lithium, marine resources such as farmed salmon, and aerospace programs such as the world-famous ALMA Telescope Project. Although our Chile Tomonkai is small with about 35 members, we take pride in our high participation rate and the large amount of alcohol we consume. I think many members reconfirm their love for Waseda in a land so far away from Japan. We are waiting for those of you who happen to get the opportunity to come to Chile.
Hideaki Azuma(Graduated in 1995, School of Political Science and Economics)

Messages from the Members

Chile is a beautiful country in South America whose natural and cultural climates are rich in variety. Although the airline distance between Chile and Japan is about 17,000 kilometers, Chile and Japan are adjacent to each other with only the Pacific Ocean in between. In addition to the fact that there are economic relationships between Chile and Japan, many Chileans are pro-Japanese and they deeply respect and take interest in Japanese culture, history, and language. Chile is a country with magical attraction, which you will love more as you learn more about it.

In such an attractive country, Chile, the members of the Tomonkai are vigorously playing active roles in their fields. We gather for any reasons we can think of, and have a great time. Two years ago, we held a joint social gathering with the Mitakai at the embassy, and had a very good time with almost 100 participants including family members. If you are ever assigned to a post in Chile, please have fun participating in the activities of the Tomonkai.
Yoshinobu Hiraishi (Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary , Graduated in 1980, School of Political Science and Economics)

How often and where do the Tomonkais all over the world hold their social gatherings? At the Chile Tomonkai, we hold a social gathering every two to three months at a Korean or Chinese restaurant. Did you think that Korean and Chinese food are good in Chile? The answer is no. We want to sing “Konpeki no Sora” and “Miyako no Seihoku”! We want to have fun with other members, and at the end, want to sing together, putting up our fists! Korean and Chinese restaurants have private rooms, which allow us to do that. We understand that social gatherings of alumni of other schools are held at steak houses or nice restaurants, and they sometimes make fun of us, but we do not mind. If you are ever in Chile, please let us know. Together, let’s make a toast with white wine (in rare cases, makgeolli) or red wine (in rare cases, huo guo or sundubu) in a Korean or Chinese restaurant which serves good food. As I write this article, I am beginning to feel like I want to have a business dinner with other Tomonkai members (In my family, we refer to a social gathering of the Tomonkai as “a business dinner.”)
Junichi Kobayashi (Graduated in 2009, School of Social Sciences)

When I hear the word “Chile,” I am reminded of things such as the fact that it is a long and narrow country, its wine, and the cave-in of the San Jose mine. I, myself, did not have much of an impression of Chile until I came here, however, I am enjoying actively participating in the activities of the Tomonkai here, a place so far away from Japan. Thanks to Waseda’s well established foreign studies network representing the spirit of progressivism, I was able to study in Chile as an international student during my school days, and already seven years have passed since then. Now I am participating in the Chile Tomonkai as an expat, and I am enjoying drinking with other members regardless of affiliation or age, which is one of the moments I feel it is good I am a Waseda alumna. Please let the Chile Tomonkai know whenever you are in Chile, no matter whether you are on vacation, coming here as an international student or an expat, or seeking to immigrate!
Emiko Ishii (Graduated in 2014, School of International Liberal Studies)

Moai statues in Easter Island

Atacama desert in the northern part of Chile

List of Overseas Branches/
Overseas Tomonkai/
Overseas Tomonkai
Branches Located in Japan

Overseas Branches
Alumni Association in China / Alumni Association in Korea / Alumni Association in Taiwan
Overseas Tomonkai
Alumni Association in China, Overseas Branch /
Bangalore Tomonkai / Bangkok Tomonkai / Beijing Tomonkai / Cambodia Tomonkai / Dalian Tomonkai / Hanoi Tomonkai / Hong Kong Tomonkai / India Tomonkai /
Jakarta Tomonkai / Kanan (South China) Tomonkai / Malaysia Tomonkai / Manila Tomonkai / Mumbai Tomonkai / Myanmar Tomonkai / Saigon Tomonkai / Seoul Tomonkai / Shanghai Tomonkai / Singapore Tomonkai / Suzhou Tomonkai / Taipei Tomonkai / Ulan Bator Tomonkai
Brisbane Tomonkai / Melbourne Tomonkai / Perth Tomonkai / Sydney Tomonkai
North America
Boston Tomonkai / Chicago Tomonkai / Georgia Tomonkai / Hawaii Tomonkai / Los Angeles Tomonkai / Michigan Tomonkai / New York Tomonkai / San Francisco Tomonkai / Seattle Tomonkai / Toronto Tomonkai / Vancouver Tomonkai / Greater Washington Tomonkai
Central and South America
Brazil Tomonkai / Chile Tomonkai / Lima Tomonkai / Mexico Tomonkai
Belgium Tomonkai / Berlin Tomonkai / Denmark Tomonkai / Dusseldorf Tomonkai /
Frankfurt Tomonkai / Geneva Tomonkai / Moscow Tomonkai / Netherlands Tomonkai / Paris Tomonkai / Stockholm Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai
Middle East
Abu Dhabi Tomonkai / Dubai Tomonkai / Qatar Tomonkai / Tehran Tomonkai
Egypt Tomonkai / Johannesburg Tomonkai / Kenya Tomonkai
Overseas Tomonkai Branches Located in Japan
Bangkok Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Beijing Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Dusseldorf Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Gaoxiong Tomonkai Alumni Association / Hanoi Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Jakarta Tomonkai Alumni Association / Los Angeles Tomonkai Japan / New York Tomonkai Tokyo Branch /
Paris Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Saigon Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Shanghai Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Singapore Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Tokyo Brazil Tomonkai / Tokyo Hong Kong Tomonkai / Tokyo Melbourne Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai Tokyo Branch