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 About Tour

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What is the US-Japan Discovery Tour?
The US-Japan Discovery Tour project is a 10-day educational program jointly hosted by the Koyamada Foundation (SKF) and SKF Japan.

The tour's purpose is to inspire and motivate Japanese youth to study English, to encourage them to study abroad at U.S. colleges and universities as well as to promote cross-cultural exchanges and strengthen friendship between the next generation of Japanese and Americans.

The touring three young Hollywood celebrities, Dylan & Cole Sprouse (The Suite Life) and Shin Koyamada (The Last Samurai), will provide unique opportunities to inspire the next generation of Japan's youth to learn about each other’s history, education and traditions as well as to enhance US-Japan connections and exchange for years to come.

The tour is twittered by Dylan (@dylansprouse), Cole (@colesprouse) and Shin (@shinkoyamada). There will also be updated facebook pages by Dylan, Cole, Shin, all the SKF and SKF Japan affiliates, which cumulatively have a few million followers, supporters and fans around the world, so everyone can tune in live to see what they're all up to.
Why Japan?
For the Sprouse brothers, who attend New York University and hold Japanese culture in high regard, it became their first visit to Japan through the first tour in 2013.

This tour will impact regional Japanese youth (especially Disney fans) and is also geared toward spreading US-Japanese brotherhood, goodwill and understanding amid the backdrop of important Japanese historical landmarks and areas. Points of significance include: visiting young American troops at US Military bases in Iwakuni and Okinawa; hosting international cultural exchange programs in the various regions; sojourn to the international modern cities of Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka; pay respects to the Tohoku disaster areas in Sendai and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima; absorb the traditional temples and tourism attractions in Kyoto, and the national Japanese garden in Shin's hometown Okayama; and partake in traditional countryside’s cultural activities in Kagoshima.
Who are Dylan & Cole Sprouse?
Twins Dylan and Cole Sprouse were born August 4, 1992, in Arezzo, Italy. They began their acting career at the tender age of six months. They are credited in ABC's series Grace Under Fire (1993), Big Daddy (1999), The Astronaut's Wife (1999), The Master of Disguise (2002), Eight Crazy Nights (2002) and The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things (2004).

More recently, the boys starred together in their own half hour sitcom The Suite Life of Zack and Cody (2005) on the Disney Channel. The show was popular enough to spawn a sequel, The Suite Life on Deck (2008). The Suite Life on Deck went on to become the most-watched tween/ children's television show in 2008 and 2009. The show ended in May 2011. They also starred in The Suite Life Movie, which aired in March of the same year. They began cultivating an adult image by starring in the independent theatrical suspense film, The Kings of Appletown in 2009.

In 2010, the twin brothers were both accepted to New York University. Cole is focusing his curriculum on the humanities and archaeology while Dylan is focusing on video game design. In 2011, Dylan was elected president of the Third Avenue North residence hall at NYU.
How did it all get started?
The Sprouse brothers have been close friends with Shin for many years. Shin starred in the Disney Channel original movie Wendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior (2006) and has worked with Dylan and Cole on many Disney Channel projects for many years. The brothers are big fans of Japanese anime and manga.

In late 2012, Dylan and Cole Sprouse were officially appointed by Nia Lyte, Co-founder & President of the Koyamada Foundation as International Ambassadors to promote the understanding of peace, friendship, education and cultural diversity within the international youth community.

The mission of the tour was born out of their wishes to one day visit Japan for the first time in their lives. The tour was created as part of our ongoing "US-Japan Initiative", which is operated under our "Agency For Education".


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