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Nobel Prize winner among hundreds of guests at official opening of Malvern College Tokyo

More than 400 people have attended the official opening of Malvern College Tokyo – the latest addition to the Malvern College family of schools.  

The ceremony officially marks the start of the school’s first academic year, with pupils having been in lessons since August.

Among those in attendance for the ceremony were Professor Roger D. Kornberg, Nobel Laureate for Chemistry at the School of Medicine at Stanford University, and Julia Longbottom CMG, the British Ambassador to Japan.

Professor Kornberg also spent the day hosting masterclasses organised by Malvern College Tokyo and the International Peace Foundation as a part of the Japan-ASEAN Bridges series of events. Bridges brings the brightest minds of the world, Nobel Laureates in Physics, Economics, Medicine and Finance, to both Japan and Thailand from November 2023 to March 2024 to stimulate exchange and enhance further development through education. 

Professor Kornberg led a primary pupils’ discussion in ‘exploring your passion for science’ and a secondary pupils’ masterclass on DNA and RNA.

A total of over 400 guests, including senior leaders from the British Consulate, the Japanese Government, Malvern College UK, universities, international schools, teaching staff, families and guests from the wider community attended the official opening.

Ms Longbottom, who previously co-hosted the launch of Malvern College Tokyo at The British Embassy in February 2023, said:

“It is a school which can draw on the strengths of two distinct cultures as you look to extend the boundaries of international education in Japan.”

Located in the city of Kodaira, a 40-minute commute from central Tokyo, Malvern College Tokyo aims to be the leading international school in the region. The school inherits the ethos of its parent school, Malvern College UK, and will initially accommodate pupils from Years 1 to 9. This will extend upwards to Year 13 by 2026, ultimately providing 950 places for both primary and secondary pupils.

Ms Jacqueline So, Co-Founder and Chief Executive of Malvern College International, Asia-Pacific, said:

“This sanctuary of learning is not just another school, but a place where young minds will be nurtured and inspired to embrace an international mindset, entrepreneurship, financial literacy, science, sports, and environmental consciousness.

“Together, we will create an environment where curiosity is nurtured, creativity is unleashed, and potential is realised. We are committed to providing a holistic education that prepares our pupils not just for academic success, but also for a life of purpose, leadership, and positive impact.”

Malvern College Tokyo adopts a holistic approach to education, ensuring that pupils develop both their ‘hard’ (academic and technical) skills and equally important ‘soft skills’ such as interpersonal relationships and communication. It is also one of the first schools in Japan to operate entrepreneurship, financial literacy and social and emotional programmes. “Malvern College Tokyo, with its state-of-the-art facilities and well-equipped laboratories, is poised to become a hub of scientific exploration and discovery,” said Professor Kornberg. 

“I am thrilled to witness the passion for learning and the thirst for knowledge that exists within this community. It is my sincere hope that the classes and dialogue I engage in with the pupils and the community today will ignite their curiosity, spark their imagination, and inspire them to pursue scientific endeavours that will shape our world for the better.”

Malvern College Tokyo supports pupils to pursue academic excellence while preparing them to be responsible members of society capable of making a real difference in the world.

Mr Mike Spencer, Founding Headmaster, said,

“We aim to provide our pupils with the complete set of tools they need to navigate a bright future ahead. Across all our academic, co-curricular and holistic educational efforts, Malvern College Tokyo is aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals to drive inclusive, equitable, quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.” 

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