The students in the "Community Development" course of the 2014 fall semester will conduct an interview survey of farmhouse inn owners in Nishiki, Semboku City. Before the students start the on-the-spot survey, special lectures were given by government officials, representatives of an NPO, and an owner of one of the farmhouse inns in order for students to acquire more concrete knowledge about sightseeing and green tourism in Akita Prefecture.
On Monday, October 20, 2014, as part of the "On-the-spot Lecture by Akita Prefectural Government," Ms. Masako Muto and Ms. Yuka Akata (AIU alumna) at the Department of Tourism, Culture and Sports in Akita Prefectural Government came to our campus. Using statistical data, they provided the students with a detailed lecture on changes, the current situation, and issues of the tourism industry in Akita Prefecture. On Wednesday, October 22, Ms. Kinuko Fujiwara and Ms. Yoshiko Shibata at Akita Hanamaru Green Tourism Promotion Council (a non-profit organization) and Ms. Fujimi Kadowaki at Seisetsukan, one of the farmhouse inns, visited our campus. They provided students with lectures on the state of green tourism in Akita Prefecture and each of their activities, using existing cases.
The lectures were followed by a Q & A session where they enthusiastically exchanged opinions. Comments made by the students included the following: "I was impressed by the phrase that you should do what your ability allows you to do, I understand this principle allows us to provide high-quality green tourism"; "I have learned from the literatures and now realize that my understanding was vague, but now I understand more concretely because I heard the actual situation"; and "I look forward to doing fieldwork more than before."
The event was covered on the blog of Akita Hanamaru Green Tourism Promotion Council.