Mitsui & Co. (Australia) Ltd.


Mitsui Educational Foundation

Mitsui Educational Foundation

Founded in 1971 by then Chairman and Managing Director of Mitsui & Co. Australia Mr Ken Ejiri AC, the Mitsui Educational Foundation (MEF) promotes mutual understanding and friendship between Australia and Japan.

Every year the foundation sponsors eight Australian university students to participate in a three-week study tour of Japan.

The students travel through Japan and take part in activities to learn about the country's history, business, industry, contemporary and traditional culture, and relationship with Australia.

The airfare for the MEF study tour is kindly sponsored by Japan Airlines Australia.

Students are selected from 22 partner universities around Australia. Over the past four decades, more than 350 Australian students have visited Japan through this program.

Many of the MEF's past participants now hold senior roles in government and business, and play an important role in promoting ties between Australia and Japan.

Participating universities

Each year the foundation selects eight universities to participate in its program. For 2017, Mitsui has selected:

  • Queensland University of Technology
  • University of Newcastle
  • University of Sydney
  • Monash University
  • Deakin University
  • University of Tasmania
  • University of Adelaide
  • Murdoch University

Applications for 2017 program have closed. Participating universities for 2018  will be announced in March 2018.

Program itinerary

The 2017 program will be held from 21 November to 12 December. Activities will include:

  • a briefing on Mitsui's business at our Tokyo headquarters
  • site visits to Nippon Steel and Toyota factories
  • a briefing on bilateral relations from the Australian Ambassador to Japan
  • an international politics class at Keio University in Tokyo
  • a chance to meet Japanese university students selected to work at Mitsui as graduates
  • a three-night homestay with a Japanese family in the city of Chigasaki
  • visits to places of historical and cultural significance in Tokyo, Hakone, Kyoto, Nara and Hiroshima.

The MEF covers all transport, accommodation and activity costs.

Selection criteria

Mitsui looks for applicants who are:

  • outstanding ambassadors for their university, and who will excel as Australian representatives while in Japan
  • academically capable; however, high academic achievement is not compulsory
  • interested in learning about Japan and who would most benefit from this experience
  • full-time undergraduate students (second year or higher) from any faculty and campus in the university's state or territory
  • Australian citizens.


The MEF program is overseen by five trustees.

Mitsui & Co. (Australia) Ltd trustees:

  • Mr Yukio Takebe, Chairman and CEO
  • Ms Wendy Holdenson, Director and Executive Vice President

External trustees:

  • Professor William Purcell, Deputy Vice Chancellor and Vice President (International), University of Technology, Sydney
  • Mr Ian Williams, Partner, Herbert Smith Freehills
  • Mr Hugh Morgan AC, CEO, First Charnock Pty Ltd. Formerly: CEO of Western Mining Corporation; President of the Business Council of Australia; President of the Australia Japan Business Co-operation Committee