The campus is very warm to say the least. 30 degrees and the sun is shining, but the students have found their place. Some have taken the opportunity to travel in Thailand before the start of the term, others just arrived. Both Swedish and international students have chosen to spend a term at Campus Bangkok.
“We started this joint venture two and a half years ago, and we feel great about seeing you all here,” says the head of School of Engineering, Roy Andersson, at a welcome session on the fifth of January. The rector of AIT, Said Irandoust, was also present at the meeting and took the opportunity to give a hearty welcome to the students.
“This is a very interesting concept,” he thinks, and says that it is extra special the first year, when the first students arrive.
“Now I know that we’ve succeeded. I am pleased to see the students from Borås here in Bangkok, and I hope that you’ll enjoy your time here with us. We will certainly do our best to make sure of that. I also hope that you will seize the opportunity to discover Thailand and its neighbours now that you are here.”
AIT is an internationally recognized university with students from all over the world. 40% of the students are from Thailand, the others from Asia in general and from the rest of the world. 30-40 nationalities are represented on campus. The staff, too, is international, only 25% being Thai.
The students from Borås will benefit greatly from their time at AIT, there is no doubt about that.
“Asia is hard to avoid if you’re talking business. Whatever you do, you always come in contact with our continent. Your time here at our campus will provide you with important experience that will serve you well in the future,” says Said Irandoust.
“There is an incredible market here in Asia, and I am glad that my colleagues at the University of Borås have taken this opportunity to cooperate. We also want to learn from you in Europe.”
A Lot of Helpful Experience
Håkan Alm, PhD student at the University of Borås, who has lived and worked in Bangkok for the past 18 years, has been an important link between the University of Borås and AIT. He is pictured here with Said Irandoust, Roy Andersson and Bo Månsson.
“There have been a couple of small problems, but we’ve been kindly aided by AIT. A lot of our problems have been solved the Thai way, with flexibility and humanity, says Håkan Alm.
The point of spending a term in Bangkok is to give the students experience of living abroad, and to give them a key to the international market. Bo Månsson, one of the programme’s teachers, says:
“As the students stay here in Bangkok, they learn to live in a world where everything can’t be taken for granted. Things work differently here, and they have to learn to befriend people of other nationalities, which is clearly beneficial to them.”
Roy Andersson agrees.
“It is rewarding to mix cultures. That features in the classes too, with a mix of Swedish and international students. It feels great to be here now, and everything has worked as planned or better than planned.”
On Thursday the 13th of January, the students networked with members of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Bangkok. The idea is to give the students opportunities to make new contacts and find internships for the summer.