ยินดีต้อนรับ and welcome to the IUPUI Goes to Thailand 2018 trip blog.
In a little more than a week, IUPUI Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar will be leading a delegation of campus leaders to build on our longstanding collaborations with Thai universities and other educational and research partners. This will be the first international trip to occur during IUPUI’s 50th Anniversary year, so it is particularly auspicious as a milestone, indicating how far our campus has come in our first 50 years and the strong partnerships that we continue to forge both across Indiana and around the world.
In addition to the chancellor and staff, the delegation will include:
- Suzanne Babich, Associate Dean of Global Health, Professor for Health Policy and Management, and Director of the Doctoral Program in Global Health Leadership in the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health
- Rita Koryan, Assistant Vice President of International Affairs, IU
- Gil Latz, Associate Vice Chancellor of International Affairs, IUPUI, Associate Vice President of International Affairs, IU
- Mathew Palakal, Senior Executive Associate Dean, School of Informatics & Computing
- Simon Rhodes, Dean, School of Science
- David Russomanno, Dean, School of Engineering & Technology
As with all other international delegations, this one will focus on building research and educational partnerships, enhancing study abroad opportunities and reconnecting with alumni. These goals reinforce the university’s global mission as presented in the Bicentennial Strategic Plan, and they also build on IUPUI’s rich history with Thai universities and other institutions of research and higher education.
A strong history
That history dates back at least to the 1950s when Walter Johnson and Henry Graham from the School of Social Work were part of an IU mission in Thailand. They were based at the University of Thammasat in Bangkok and helped Thammasat develop its social work program. They also worked with social service organizations in Bangkok. The head of the IU mission was Joseph Sutton, who later was the IU president at the time of the creation of IUPUI.
In the 1970s, Howard Schaller, who would later serve as IUPUI executive vice chancellor, was in charge of the Ford Foundation office in Bangkok, further strengthening our campus’s connection to Thailand.
Since 1990, IUPUI official visits to Thailand have helped to celebrate at Chulalongkorn University’s 75th anniversary and have focused on extending partnerships in dentistry, philanthropy, and other areas, including student recruiting.
The IUPUI delegation will be building on this solid foundation over the course of our trip, which begins with a visit to King Mongkut’s University of Technology of Thonburi, which ranks among the top universities of science and technology in the whole of Southeast Asia.
At the end of the delegation’s first day in Thailand, we will experience one of the highlights of the trip, no doubt: our visit with IUPUI and Indiana University alumni from Thailand. IUPUI has more than 100 alumni from Thailand. Indiana University as a whole has more than 1,000 alumni affiliates with Thailand.
A special word of thanks goes to Peter Boonjarern, president of the IU Alumni Association Thailand Chapter, who has gone to great lengths to help facilitate this visit. A Kelley School of Business graduate, Peter is also the director of the latest addition to the IU Global Gateway Network, the IU ASEAN Gateway Office in Bangkok, which will officially open in March 2019.
Day two will take the delegation to Nakhon Si Thammarat, one of the most ancient cities in Thailand, a major pilgrimage site, and a strategic location in terms of higher education. The delegation’s destination in this southern Thai city is Walailak University, which helps fill in the gap in the southern half of the country in terms of providing higher education.
On day three, the delegation will return to Bangkok, aiming to visit the Ministry of Science and Technology as well as Mahidol University, which was founded in 1888 as the country’s first medical school. Since then it has evolved into one of the most prestigious and top-ranked universities in Thailand.
On the final day of the visit, the most of the delegation will meet with colleagues at Chulalongkorn University, another of Thailand’s oldest and most prestigious universities.
In addition, the delegation will also be visiting with Dr. Juree Vichit-Vadakan, a tireless advocate for civil society and gender equality with longstanding connections to IUPUI through the Center on Philanthropy on whose board of governors she served in 2004. Since that time the center has become the world’s first school of philanthropy, the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at IUPUI. More details to come about the important roles Dr. Vichit-Vadakan plays in Thailand and her connections to our campus.
Many thanks and looking forward to your virtual company
A special word of thanks to all of those in the Office of International Affairs, Special Collections at IUPUI and University Archives, and in units across campus who have helped us prepare for this journey.
And thank you for being part of this adventure. Come back for the latest photos, updates, and stories from the IUPUI team in Thailand.
Please feel free to reach out to me directly with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.