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James “JD” Parker

A University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa doctoral student earned a 2022–23 Crown Prince Akihito Scholarship. James “JD” Parker, from the College of Education’s Educational Foundations (EDEF) Global and International Education program, will receive a $45,000 allowance to study for one to two years at a Japanese university, which includes access to educational networks at the national and government levels.

“Having devoted the better part of my career and academic studies to developing greater understanding between the U.S. and Japan, I know this scholarship will empower me with the credentials, skills and knowledge necessary to promote an interconnected Asia-Pacific region through education,” stated Parker.

Established in 1959 to commemorate the wedding of then Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko, the scholarship is awarded to graduate students of Japan or the United States who are pursuing a subject area leading to better understanding between Japan and the U.S.

Parker’s research investigates human rights education (HRE) as a global educational trend in the context of teacher training programs called “Lesson Study in Japan.”

“With the relatively young history of HRE in Japan, there is a dearth of research focusing on the essential mechanisms of HRE implementation and recontextualization within teacher professional development in Japan,” explained Parker. “This research is particularly relevant given the global debates around the increasing influence and participation of global education governance in schooling practices.”

Parker will provide written reports to the Crown Prince Akihito Scholarship Foundation office in Honolulu during his time in Japan.

“Educational Foundations is thrilled that James will have this support to conduct his research in Japan,” said EDEF Associate Professor Alexander Means. “The questions he is pursuing in his dissertation regarding human rights education are crucial at this time of global conflict and inequality. Looking forward to seeing the results of this impactful study and how they can be used to improve education for all.”

Parker’s experiences at UH Mānoa are examples of UH Mānoa’s goals of Enhancing Student Success (PDF) and Excellence in Research: Advancing the Research and Creative Work Enterprise (PDF), two of four goals identified in the 2015–25 Strategic Plan (PDF), updated in December 2020.

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