New scholarship for SMU students studying in Japan honors Dr. H Neill McFarland

Former SMU student Matthew Reitz during his SMU-in-Japan term in the summer of 2016.

The ORIX Americas Miyauchi Charitable Foundation has agreed to fund a scholarship for SMU students who participate in the SMU-in-Japan study abroad program at Kwansei Gakuin University (KGU). The grant will be $20,000 per year, beginning in 2018, for five years. The scholarship, founded in the SMU Tower Center Sun & Star Program on Japan and East Asia, intends to commemorate Dr. H Neill McFarland’s contribution to U.S.-Japan relations by building ties between SMU and KGU.

“Through the ORIX scholarship, Dr. H. Neill McFarland will be honored for his contributions to expanding U.S- Japan relations over many decades,” said Hideto Nishitani, Chairman, President and CEO of Dallas-based ORIX USA Corporation. “ORIX is making an investment in developing young leaders that can shape the future of international relations and business. Through this exchange, students will experience a new culture and environment that will enhance their abilities, challenge their world perspective, and prove invaluable in our increasingly interconnected world.”

Dr. McFarland, who started as a professor at SMU in 1954, began visiting KGU in 1956 as a visiting professor. He continued to travel between the U.S. and Japan for the rest of his life, and he founded the Japan-America Society of Dallas in 1970.

“Our family was so touched to learn about this scholarship,” said Anna McFarland, daughter of Neill McFarland. “It is a deeply meaningful way to remember our father and honor his work at SMU and KGU, both of which were dear to his heart. I know he would have felt greatly honored by this scholarship and excited about the life-changing opportunities it will offer SMU students.”

The grant is also made possible by Japan Airlines’ commitment to offer low-fare plane tickets for SMU students studying at KGU in Osaka, Japan.

“Japan Airlines is honored to participate in the Dr. Neill McFarland Memorial Scholarship for students who wish to immerse themselves in Japanese culture and study,” said Hiroshi Abe, senior vice president of Japan Airlines America. “We hope these students will come to love Japan and take back many fond memories from their time spent abroad. We salute the ORIX Americas Miyauchi Charitable Foundation for helping to make this journey possible for the SMU students.”

“I thank Nishitani-san for choosing SMU to be the recipient of this grant,” said Hiroki Takeuchi, director of the Sun & Star Program. “The SMU-in-Japan Program at KGU is rooted in SMU’s ties with KGU, which Dr. McFarland established and developed beginning in the 1950s.  Thanks to Dr. McFarland’s effort, the SMU-in-Japan Program has received tremendous support from many people at KGU, who remember him fondly.”