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Institute Forum has a prescription for AIT, coming from students

Modelled as a forum where students can offer their suggestions for betterment, the Institute Forum organized on 1 December 2016 had seven students hailing from different countries present their recommendations on how the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) can move ahead.

Describing the event as “historic,” Director of Office of External Relations (OEXR), Mr. Shawn Kelly introduced seven students from AIT’s three schools, who then shared their insight with the audience.  Participating students included Clara Elizaga (Philippines), Huno Solomon Kofi Mensah (Ghana), Nikolai Bn (Germany), Adeel Tariq (Pakistan), Piraya Lueprasitsakul (Thailand), Tharika Fernando (Sri Lanka), and Wendy Wuyts (Belgium).

AIT President Prof. Worsak Kanok-Nukulchai described the event as a “role reversal,” where students would talk while everyone else would listen. He stated that the present education system was still based on the classroom of the nineteenth century, adding that new initiatives are required in the field of education.

Chairman of AIT’s Executive Committee, Dr. Sahas Bunditkul welcomed the event stating that he was looking forward to listening from the students.

Issues deliberated by participating students included qualities of a global citizen, expectations of students, promoting innovation and ingenuity, encouraging interdisciplinary competence and knowledge, inculcating a better understanding of the host country, out of the box classes, thinking about life after AIT, desire for better facilities at AIT, need to upgrade campus infrastructure, increasing diversity among instructors, and looking ahead at AIT’s future.

The AIT President welcomed the suggestions stating that the next session would witness many changes. He stated that more work spaces have been created for the students, and these facilities would be opened soon. He also welcomed the suggestion for introducing an orientation session for incoming students on Thailand. The AIT President also elaborated on the plans to improve the landscaping at AIT, including provision of a running track. Prof. Worsak mentioned that the Institute is also working on new programs on leadership and entrepreneurship, and is deliberating on the introduction of modular courses.