Kodaisai 2023, also known as Tokyo Tech Festival 2023, is an annual event that brings together students, alumni, prospective students, and anyone interested in Tokyo Tech. This year’s festival, with the theme “Chronicle,” aims to reflect on the institute’s history and memories while celebrating the changes happening at Tokyo Tech. Held on October 28 and 29, 2023 at the main Ookayama campus, the festival utilizes the entire campus to provide a diverse and engaging experience for all attendees.

The festival encompasses three main categories of activities:

1. Pop-up Stores: One of the highlights of Kodaisai is the variety of pop-up stores set up by Tokyo Tech students. These stores offer a delicious selection of food that ranges from worldwide cuisines like french fries, churros, and bubble tea to popular Japanese dishes like okonomiyaki, ramen, and yakitori. It is an excellent opportunity for students to showcase their entrepreneurial drive and culinary skills. While supporting the event, attendees can take part in a great dining experience.

Photo 1: Food, friends, and festive lines

2. Lectures & Demonstrations: The festival transforms ordinary lecture rooms into hubs of entertainment and intellectual engagement. Each room hosts different games and activities designed to suit a variety of interests. From simple games that anyone can enjoy to critical thinking puzzles that challenge the mind, there is something for everyone. Experience more than just indoor spaces; there are also outdoor experiments such as Tatara, a traditional Japanese method of crafting high-grade steel, as shown in Photo 2. Additionally, some of the research labs on campus use this platform to present their facilities and research themes, aiming to spark visitors’ interest and promote the innovative work being done at Tokyo Tech.

Photo 2: Tatara iron-making pouring demonstration – iron sand into the furnace.

3. Stage Performances: Kodaisai 2023 has four main stages with a wide range of events happening all day long. These stages include the auditorium, Taki Plaza stage, gymnasium stage, and an outdoor stage. The main goal is to provide a platform for Tokyo Tech’s students and clubs to show their talents. The festival’s attendees can enjoy a diverse range of performances, including music, dance, comedy shows, and more. This promotes a sense of unity and community among the various clubs on campus, in addition to exhibiting the creative talents of Tokyo Tech students.

Photo 3: A spectacular performance under the open sky

I arrived at Tokyo Tech just last September, and my excitement for Kodaisai 2023 has been building ever since. The pandemic cast a shadow over the previous year, with Kodaisai 2022 being limited in attendance and requiring advance registration on a first-come, first-served basis. Unfortunately, I missed out on the opportunity to attend last year’s festival.

Back in my undergraduate days in Thailand, we never had anything quite like Kodaisai – a grand university-wide event that unites the entire campus. This year, I had the unique opportunity to contribute to two pop-up stores, “Thai Tokodai” and “Café SAGE & TISA,” as a member of both clubs. It has been an incredible experience being part of the behind-the-scenes action and witnessing the preparation that goes into making this festival a success.

Photo 4: Spice up your Kodaisai: authentic Thai flavors (left),
Photo 5: Global tastes unite: SAGE & TISA clubs – where cultures blend (right)

To top it all off, I had the chance to explore the festival with my two best friends, Kyle from the Philippines and Feldy from Indonesia. Together, we embarked on a culinary and adventure journey, trying various foods and activities the festival had to offer. It was a very memorable moment for us, filled with laughter, shared experiences, and the joy of discovering the “Chronicle” of Tokyo Tech’s history and the innovation that lies ahead.

The festival’s theme, “Chronicle,” is particularly touching since it encourages participants to consider the institution’s history while also looking to the future. It acknowledges the significant changes Tokyo Tech is going through and highlights how important it is to preserve and celebrate the school’s rich history and the memories made there over the years.

In addition to being an excellent opportunity for the Tokyo Tech community to unite and celebrate, Kodaisai 2023 also acts as an occasion for interacting with potential students and others. Tokyo Tech is more than simply an academic institution; it is a place where creativity, innovation, and tradition come together to deliver a unique and enriching experience for everyone. This image highlights the positive, dynamic, and diverse essence of the university.