Denmark Tomonkai

About the Denmark Tomonkai

Established in 2016, the Denmark Tomonkai has over 30 members as of April 2023. While it is a relatively new Overseas Tomonkai and small in scale, its members are so strongly connected that many of them hope to continue their membership even after leaving Denmark. The Denmark Tomonkai Tokyo Branch (an unregistered Tomonkai that only people who have belonged to the Denmark Tomonkai are allowed to join) was set up last year as a subsidiary of the Denmark Tomonkai. As the secretary of the Tomonkai, I am quite impressed that the Waseda alumni, who got acquainted with each other in Denmark, gathered in Tokyo and had a good time, irrespective of their age and occupation.

Usually, we have a get-together once a month or once every two months. Every year in June, which is the best season in Denmark, we hold a general meeting barbecue for members and their families/partners.

Just like Denmark values “equality,” the Denmark Tomonkai is a flat and friendly association without an age-based hierarchy, and members communicate in a straightforward manner. We actively interact with other overseas Tomonkais in Europe. Please do not hesitate to contact us when you visit Denmark.
Nao Adachi (Graduated in 2002, School of Political Science and Economics)

The get-together event in the summer of 2022 was held at a restaurant along a canal in Copenhagen.

The attractive points of Denmark

I have been living in Denmark for 26 years. One of the things that surprised and attracted me was the interaction between political parties and policy-making processes in Denmark.

In many democratic countries, the ruling and opposition parties often fiercely confront each other. As the confrontation between the two blocs sometimes becomes intense, they may end up viewing the other side as an enemy, expressing hatred, and spending all their time slandering the other.

However, such a situation is uncommon in Denmark. All political parties participate in and thoroughly discuss important policy decisions, which strongly reflects their mutual respect and focus on the people.

In this regard, Denmark shows us the direction a democracy should take and makes me feel that it is half a step ahead of many other democratic countries.
Nobuhiro Igarashi (Graduated in 1974, School of Literature Ⅱ)

Nyhavn, a sightseeing area of the Danish capital, Copenhagen

Colorful buildings and a boat in Nyhavn

Message from the Chairperson

The Waseda spirit. What images do these words bring to mind? There would be various opinions, such as “Bankara (rough and uncouth style),” “weirdos,” and Waseda’s anthem “Miyako no Seihoku (Northwest of the Capital).” In my opinion, the “Waseda spirit” is the “unique aura that the students and alumni of Waseda have.”

Seven years ago, when I was working hard to solicit new members to establish a Tomonkai, I felt that Denmark was a minor country. Now I do not believe that. In recent years, an increasing number of people have visited the nation, including exchange students between Waseda University and Danish universities, businesspeople participating in joint projects with local companies, and dedicated people pursuing their dreams. These people have also joined the Tomonkai.

Every time I meet various people and get to know them better, I feel one thing. For sure, all of them have “something interesting” about them. Intelligence, curiosity, the ability to take action, and creativity; the aura that is invisible but certainly present envelops them: the Tomonkai people. This aura draws other alumni like a magnet. In this way, I think that the Tomonkai people attract others through the aura of the Waseda spirit while they are also attracted to other members.
Eri Watanabe (Graduated in 2003, School of Letters, Arts and Sciences Ⅰ)

Messages from the Members

What is common to us is that we studied at Waseda University and lived in Denmark, which is a unique country. We can effortlessly open up like close friends in less than 30 minutes after meeting for the first time and talk to each other endlessly, regardless of our age, gender, career, or nationality. The Denmark Tomonkai is an unaccountably pleasant community. During my expatriate life, which was somewhat boring and frustrating, this association inspired and encouraged me.

There might be some kind of affinity between the Danish culture of individualism that values solidarity and the independent, free, and passionate culture of Waseda. I think this is also reflected in the fact that the Denmark Tomonkai is so comforting that a Tokyo branch was created to provide a platform for members to talk to each other after returning to Japan.
Masato Yamada (Graduated in 1987, School of Political Science and Economics)

After I moved to Denmark, I started to think, “I am glad that I went to Waseda University.” I believe we have a sense of camaraderie in knowing that we are somewhat similar. In a foreign country, Tomonkai members can open up to each other quickly, regardless of age and gender. Here’s to the Denmark Tomonkai, which allowed me to meet lifelong friends!
Yuka Harikai (Graduated in 2005, School of Letters, Arts and Sciences Ⅱ, Graduated with a master’s degree in 2008, Graduate School of Social Sciences)

I joined the Denmark Tomonkai in 2019 as I was invited by Mr. Yamada, who worked for a company in the city of Aarhus, where I also worked, and had joined the association slightly earlier than me. It took three hours each way to reach the Copenhagen area, where many members gathered. Even so, I participated in Tomonkai events if the circumstances allowed, probably because the members were diverse and inspired me a lot. It seems to me that the Denmark Tomonkai is a microcosm of Denmark, a country that is small but rich in diversity. Or it may be a scaled-down version of Waseda University. The Denmark Tomonkai is a “hygge (cozy)” association.
Keita Ishimitsu (Graduated in 1994, School of Science and Engineering)

Perhaps influenced by the Danish culture, the members of the Denmark Tomonkai are on an equal footing, and the overall environment is warm and friendly.

Not only did we share information about life in Denmark but we also had various conversations, from fun stories to serious discussions, even though we had never met before, which made me feel greatly supported.

Everyone was friendly and kind to me as a student. When I struggled with my research, regular meetings with members of the Denmark Tomonkai motivated me every day.
Sato Naito (Graduated in 2020, School of Law, Graduated with a master’s degree in 2022, Graduate School of Law)

The world’s largest bicycle city where the bicycle infrastructure is well developed

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