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AIT Newsletter August 2010


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August 2010 edition of the monthly newsletter of the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT).

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AIT Newsletter August 2010

  1. 1. Asian Institute of Technology August 2010 H.E. William J. Burns US describes AIT as a “world class” institute he Asian Institute of Tech- orating on the concept, H.E. Burns stated that “Western nology (AIT) has been described Digital’s work with the world-class Asian Institute of as a “world class institute” by H.E. Technology in Thailand to develop degree programs in In- William J. Burns, Under Secretary for formation Technology is just one example of the type of Political Affairs, US Department of cooperation we want to expand under this Creative Part- State. H.E. Burns made these remarks nership.” AIT and Western Digital had jointly launched a when he was in Bangkok to deliver a Master of Science (M.Sc.) program in (Hard Disc Drive) talk, “A Renewed U.S.-Thai Alliance for HDD Engineering Technology, a program that drew sup- the 21st Century ” on 16 July 2010. port by the Hard Disk Drive Institute (HDDI) cluster at National Electronics and Computer Technology Center The seasoned diplomat delved on the (NECTEC), Thailand. idea of a “creative partnership” be- tween US and Thailand. While elab- The entire text of the speech can be read at this link . AIT alumnus to be new Governor Recent News ................................ 2 of Bank of Thailand People / What’s Happening ......... 5 Distinguished AIT alumus Dr. Prasarn Trairat- vorakul has been appointed as the new Governor Backpage..................................... 6 of the Bank of Thailand. The appointment was cleared at the cabinet meeting of the Royal Thai Government, and Dr. Prasarn is slated to assume his new position on October 1 after receiving ainside issue royal command from His Majesty the King en- dorsing his position. Read more on page 2
  2. 2. Recent News / happenings at AIT AIT alumnus to be new Governor of Bank of ThailandDistinguished alumnus of distinguished alumni award.the Asian Institute of Tech- He has also served on thenology (AIT), Dr. Prasarn Board of AIT’s School ofTrairatvorakul has been ap- Engineering and Techno-pointed as the new Governor logy (SET).of the Bank of Thailand. Theappointment was cleared at At present Dr. Prasarn is thethe cabinet meeting of the president of Kasikornbank.Royal Thai Government, Prior to Kasikornbank, heand Dr. Prasarn is slated to served at the Securitiesassume his new position on and Exchange Commis-October 1 after receiving sion (SEC) as both deputya royal command from His secretary general as well asMajesty the King endorsing his position. secretary general. He also served a two-year stint as a research fellow at the International Food Policy Re-Dr. Prasarn graduated with a Master’s in Engineering search Institute (IFPRI) in Washington DC. Earlier inin 1976 from AIT’s School of Advanced Technolo- 2010, Dr. Prasarn was elected chairman of the Thaigies in the program Industrial Engineering and Man- Bankers’ Association earlier this year.agement. Dr. Prasarn has been a recipient of the AIT AIT will be the hub of the new Asia-Africa FoundationThe Asian Institute of Technology has contributed to- ments, international organizations, and the public andwards the advancement of higher learning and devel- private sectors,” he said.opment in Asia for more than fifty years. Africa is thenext development challenge and the lessons learned Dr. Amoussou-Guenou said the Foundation’s mis-by AIT in applying science and technology for sus- sion was to serve as a bridge for new cooperation andtainable solutions is also important for development development opportunities between Africa and Africa. These were the remarks of AIT’s Dr. Ro- The ASAFO follows an exploratory visit by an AITland Amoussou-Guenou, Co-Founder and President delegation to various African nations in 2009. Theof the new Asia-Africa Foundation (ASAFO), while trip provided an opportunity to understand the degreespeaking during the launch of a new website to which governments, organizations and universities are interested in engaging Asia. “AIT will be the hub of the Asia-Africa Foundation for South-South assis-“AIT is already receiving students from Africa, but tance and cooperation with Africa,” Dr. Amoussou-the time has come to bring the exchange to the next Guenou confirmed.level with the cooperation and support of govern-
  3. 3. Recent News / happenings at AIT AIT mourns passing of Mr. Chukiat Photayanuvat,President of AITAA−Thai ChapterThe Asian Institute of Technology was deeply saddened by the sudden pass-ing away of distinguished alumnus Mr. Chukiat Photayanuvat (GTE 1979),President of the AIT Alumni Association (AITAA) −Thai Chapter, and Dep-uty Governor of the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA), onSunday, 25 July 2010. Mr. Chukiat, who lost his battle with cancer, was 55.“With the passing away of Mr. Chukiat, we have lost a close and dear friendof the Asian Institute of Technology,” AIT President Said Irandoust said inan email to faculty, staff, students and alumni. entire AIT community to theMr. Chukiat was an extremely active and respected member of the AIT immediate family members,Alumni Association, and his contributions to the Institute, especially in his relatives and friends of Mr.capacity as the President of the AITAA-Thailand Chapter, will always be Chukiat. He said the thoughtsvalued and remembered, President Irandoust said. and prayers of all of AIT were with them at this very difficultPresident Irandoust expressed his heartfelt condolences on behalf of the time of bereavement.SCINDA receiving station established at AIT AIT alumna appointed Permanent Secretary in Ministry of Social Development and Human Security Ms. Panita Kambhu Na Ayutthaya, a distinguished alumna of the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT,) hasThe Institute of Scientific Research (ISR), Boston College, USA has been appointed Permanent Secretaryestablished a receiving station at AIT under the framework of Net- in the Ministry of Social Develop- ment and Human Security, Royalwork Decision Aid (SCINDA) research network. The receiving sta- Thai Government. She is the secondtion comprises of a high precision GPS Base station and Very High woman to be appointed at this posi-Frequency(VHF) receivers. SCINDA involves over 40 institutions and tion since its establishment in a network of ground sensors developed to generate real time com-munication outage maps and warnings for satellite communication and Ms. Panita graduated from AIT inGPS users. It ensures exchange of ionospheric data recorded by each 1986 with a M.Sc. in Human Settle-institution as a part of collaborative research activities. ments and Development from the School of Environment, ResourcesAIT has signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Institute and Development (SERD). She stud-of Scientific Research (ISR), Boston College, USA to forge coopera- ied Archaeology in her Bachelor’stive research under the framework of Scintillation Network Decision degree from Silpakorn University,Aid (SCINDA) research network. ISR and AIT will conduct regional graduating in 1977. She also attend-research on geodynamics, real-time corrections of GPS signals from ed the National Defence College ofsolar extremes and solar flares in upper atmosphere among others. Thailand in 2004.
  4. 4. OPINION Timor Leste needs strong involvement of AIT: MinisterM inister of Agriculture and Fisheries of Timor Leste, H.E. Mariano Assanami Sabino has The two-day national workshop was hosted by the MAF (Timor Leste) in co-sponsorship with called for strong involve- German Technical Coop-ment of AIT in meeting the eration (GTZ), Europeancountry’s Strategic Program Union (EU), and AIT. The2020 for agricultural growth co-sponsorship for AITand sustainable food secu- was brought through byrity. The Minister stated this Dr. Abha Mishra, Seniorfollowing consultative meet- Research Specialist-cum-ings held after the two day Affiliated Faculty, ASE/national workshop on “Re- SERD with support fromview of rice cultivation sys- GTZ. Dr. Mishra was onetems in Timor Leste” held at of the four key speakersDili. invited to analyze, discussA meeting of donor agen- and provide recommenda-cies with the Ministry of tions for Sustainable RiceAgriculture and Fisheries (MAF) of Timor Leste is Intensification (SRI). The other key speakers invitedplanned in coming weeks and the Minister stressed for this workshop were from the International Ricethe need for the presence of AIT at this meeting to Research Institute (IRRI); Bogor Agricultural Uni-assist in formulating a five-year plan of activities for versity (IPB), Indonesia and the Tamil Nadu Agricul-rice intensification. tural University, India.AIT Chairman discusses New AIT Charter, and muchmore on ASEAN TVAIT’s Chairman of the Board of Trustees, H.E. Dr. Tej Bunnag, was the special guest of the televisionprogram ASEAN Talks telecast regionally on 1 July 2010.I n a 30-minute interview, Dr. Tej touched on a wide variety of subjects related to the Asian Institute ofTechnology, in particular AIT’s landmark New Charter,which he explained would be signed by the Ministry ofForeign Affairs on behalf of the Royal Thai Governmentto become a founding member of the “New AIT”.The Chairman outlined to viewers key elements of AIT’shalf-century history, and told of its lasting impact on theregion. In an entertaining exchange, Dr.Tej explained detailsof what makes AIT a special and enduring internationalinstitute of higher leaning for Thailand and the region.ASEAN Talks is broadcast nightly on the ASEAN TVnetwork via satellite across the ASEAN region, and can H.E. Dr. Tej Bunnagbe viewed in Thailand on MCOT Channel 2.
  5. 5. PEOPLE Dr.Supasith Chonglerttham Mr. Nayana D.P. Dehigama Dr.Supasith Chonglerttham has Mr. Nayana D.P. Dehigama, joined the School of Manage- a doctoral student of AIT’s ment (SOM) as a Senior In- School of Management structor starting 1 July 2010. (SOM), has won the third Dr. Chonglerttham obtained his Asia-Pacific Young Entrepre- Ph.D. in Finance, 2009, from the neur Award. The awards wereUniversity of Hawaii at Manoa, Hawaii, USA and an announced at the 24th Conference of the Confed-MBA in Finance, 2005, from Tulane University, USA. eration of Asia Pacific Chambers of Commerce andDuring his appointment, Dr. Chonglerttham will teach Industry (CACCI), which concluded on 7 July 2010Finance and Managerial Accounting. at Colombo, Sri Lanka.Professional Develop- NITI to contribute to AIT “30 alumni serve atment Needs Assess- Endowment Fund Nong Lam University”ment workshop at AIT Alumnus of the Asian Institute of Thirty alumni from AIT are al-A four-day Professional Develop- Technology (AIT) and Executive ready serving at the Nong Lamment Needs Assessment (PDNA) Chairman of Nepal’s National In- University (NLU) in Vietnam andworkshop for the Asian Project formation Technology Institute NLU looks forward towards moreManagement Support Programme (NITI), Mr. Pramod S. S. Prad- association with AIT. This was(AFMAS) was organized at AIT, han, has announced that half of his stated by Dr. Tring Truong Giang,with the AIT President Prof. Said earnings from undergraduate stu- Rector, NLU during a visit to AIT.Irandoust stressing that such ini- dent recruitment would be donated NLU and AIT also signed a MOUtiatives would help project man- to the AIT Endowment Fund. He to expand mutual collaboration inagement skills in the region. stated this during the signing cer- academics, research, training andAFMAS is an initiative of the In- emony of the Memorandum of consultancy services.ternational Fund for Agricultural Agreement (MOA) between NITIDevelopment (IFAD), and AIT and AIT on 16 July 2010.Extension was tasked to hold the What’s Happening atfour-day PDNA workshop. Mr. Pradhan, who is also the for- AIT? mer president of the Nepal Chap- “This is a platform which fos- ter of the AIT Alumni Association, • August 11, 2010ters interaction and networking announced that while 50 per cent Orientation Day for fresh AIT combined with a professional of NITI’s earnings from the un- studentsdevelopment approach,” the AIT dergraduate recruitment would be • August 23, 2010President said. He thanked AIT spent on publicity and AIT promo- Training Course on CSR alumna Ms. Ayurzana Puntsag- tions, the remaining 50 per cent Essentials at the CSR Asia davaa of IFAD for enabling AIT would be contributed to the AIT Center at AITand IFAD to work together. “I am Endowment Fund.sure the PDNA workshop will Augusthelp in enhancing capacity in the NITI signed two MOA with AIT to 2 010Asian region,” the AIT President act as a Student Recruitment Agentremarked. (SRA) for both undergraduate and 11 postgraduate students. NITI would help AIT recruit both students and 23 training participants from Nepal.
  6. 6. BackPAGE Prospective students welcomed on Visit AIT Day AIT played host on 12 July 2010 when prospective students and their parents visited AIT for an en- tire day to familiarize themselves about AIT. Apart from introduc- tory talks about studies and life at AIT, the visitors went around the campus visiting various schools and facilities. They also savored an international lunch. An inter- while maintaining an Asian orientation. “AIT students graduate with an national cultural show followed, international perspective; high level of IT competence, innovation, and where students from various coun- are able to achieve integration of holistic aspects while remaining pegged tries showcased their respective to industrial relevance,” he added. This opinion was also echoed by AIT cultures for the visitors. alumnus, Mr. Somjate Saifon, Director and Chemicals Manager, Esso Prof. Worsak Kanok-Nukulchai, (Thailand) PCL, who specially participated in the event to enlighten pro- AIT’s Vice President for Resource spective students regarding the advantages of ac- and Development, described AIT quiring education at AIT. President of the AIT as an ideal place for students to Student Union, Mr. Worawaj Onnom, also acquire an international outlook welcomed the students. News In a Climate Quest, the Roof as White Knight Yo u Can Since he took over as energy secretary last year, Steven Chu, a Nobel lau- reate in physics, has urged Americans to help cool the planet by painting their Use roofs a lighter color that reflects sunlight. “When you’re thinking of putting on a new roof, make it white,” Dr. Chu told Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show” audience in 2009. “It costs no more to make it white than to make it black.” Now he is following his own advice: on Monday, Dr. Chu directed all Energy Depart- ment offices to install white roofs during new construction, when replacing old roofs and wherever an installation is cost-effective over the lifetime of the roof. The secretary urged other federal agencies to follow suit. “Cool roofs are one of the quickest and lowest-cost ways we can reduce our global Editor: carbon emissions and begin the hard work of slowing climate change,” he said in a Bajinder Pal Singh statement. Media Specialist, AIT Read the entire news item at .at this link For feedback, contact and Communications knight/ Unit at AIT Source: The New York Times