Brief History

PHILAJAMES was founded in the summer of 1972 when University of Tokyo alumnus, Mr. Jovencio D. Torres together with 5 other Monbusho (former name of Monbukagakusho) scholars: Prof. Jose G. Diaz, Dr. Felipe P. Calderon, Mr. Cesar Lopez, Dr. Efren C. Flores and Mr. Larry Azurin, met at the Butterfly Restaurant near the present Quezon City Memorial. Several months later, in January 1973, several alumni members met at the audio-visual room of the Japan Information Center, Embassy of Japan (then located at the Filinvest Bldg., Taft Avenue, near the corner of present Quirino Avenue) to elect the officers of the Association. The former name of the Association was “Philippine Association of the Japanese Ministry of Education Scholars”, in short PHILAJAMES. Induction of the first set of officers was held on April 7, 1973 at the Sulo Hotel in Quezon City with the Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines, Hon. Toshio Urabe, as Inducting Officer and Guest Speaker.

The idea to incorporate the Association with the Securities and Exchange Commission was initiated during the term of Dr. Paciente A. Cordero, Jr., President from 1978-1979. However, not until the term of Mr. Nestor D. Garcia as President in 1980-1981 was PHILAJAMES finally incorporated with SEC under Registration No. 92936. To meet the challenges of the new millennium, the Board during the term of Dr. Lydia G. Tansinsin (1997-2000) amended the By-Laws and applied for SEC approval. Approval was granted on the 27th of September 1997. During the term of Dr. Benito M. Pacheco (2002-2005), the name of the Association was modified (adapted April 13, 2004) to its present name “The Philippine Association of Japanese Government Scholars” (PHILAJAMES) after the ratification of its By-Laws on May 31, 2003 by the members and was incorporated with the SEC on June 4, 2004.

The PHILAJAMES members are Filipinos who have completed the Monbukagakusho/JSPS-Ronpaku program in Japanese universities. They assist in the promotion of the ideals and objectives of the Japanese Government Scholarship Program through the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (Mombukagakusho, formerly Monbusho); provide support  for the professional growth of members; enhance in the scholars the spirit of preserving and appreciating the distinctive and enduring values of Japanese education, ensure at all times a faithful representation of responsible thinking and sentiments regarding issues of interest to all the members, our associates, and our friends; promote better relations and understanding between the Filipinos and the Japanese; work for the aid and protection of the members; provide cooperation and support to both the Philippine and Japanese government and private agencies whose programs may benefit the members; establish and strengthen the necessary chapters that will assist the association’s bid in ensuring that the members are well informed and enlightened about the association and its activities through the dissemination of fair, complete and accurate information; and strengthen the spirit of  camaraderie and cooperation among the members of the association. (PHILAJAMES Preamble)


The PHILAJAMES Coat of Arms (our logo) portrays its long history and goals. At the sinister is the Philippine National Flower, Sampaguita. Its flowers in bloom represent the Monbusho alumni of various Japanese Government Universities, while the bud represents the Undergraduates in the Monbusho Scholarship Program. On the dexter is the Chrysanthemum, Japan`s National Flower. This flower represents the Japanese Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which are responsible for the Scholars Program and the After-Care Program, respectively, of Monbusho Scholars. At the center is the traditional open book and flaming torch, the symbols of learning, knowledge and wisdom. These were adapted during the Philippine Commonwealth, when the current Philippine Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports was still known as Bureau of Education. The artist’s modern style design is reflected in the torch flame with fifteen (15) rays. The rays represent the fifteen Monbusho Alumni who were signatories in the Articles of Incorporation and the By-Laws. 1972 is the birth year of PHILAJAMES.

The artist who made our logo is Mr. Ysidro K. Castillo, Jr. (Faculty of Industrial Arts, Kyoto Technical University, 1955-1958) who was with the 2nd batch of scholars.