CMIS Class of 2007
The CMIS graduating Class of
Chiang Mai International School has a long history of sending its graduating
students to far-flung places across the globe to pursue personal interests
or goals, altruistic aims, and/or varied fields of study, often in
prestigious institutions within Thailand and abroad. This year is no
Of this year’s 33 graduating seniors, we have those who will take up offers
at very fine institutions such as Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh
(to study chemical engineering), the University of California Riverside (for
liberal arts), Trent University in Ontario, Canada (to study economics), and
Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok (to study communications management in
one case, and business and accounting in another). We also have a student
who will attend Ohio State University on a full National Merit Scholarship
(to study biological sciences).
What determines where one of our students will end up? How do they make
their decision? It is not based on prestige or academics alone. There are
many factors that influence where a graduating senior will go in the year
following their departure from high school. For some it is a question of
money and/or opportunity: What can the family afford, especially if there
are siblings to consider? What scholarships or other financial aid
opportunities are available? How expensive is it to live, study, or work in
a certain location? For some families, money is no object; but for many, it
is crucial and often affects things like whether a local family’s son or
daughter will remain in Thailand or go abroad. Some members of the Class of
2007 have received offers from wonderful institutions for courses around the
world, but the financial burden, even when some financial aid is offered, is
simply too great. So, perhaps for many good reasons, some local students
will stay in Thailand and will undertake a great education here, with the
future opportunity of entering graduate studies abroad. For others whose
families come from countries other than Thailand, it may be more financially
viable to have their son or daughter attend a university or college in their
home country. One of our graduating students, for example, will go to
Germany to pursue his interest in international relations or business,
combined with Chinese language studies, where financing his education will
be easier with his German passport. Many graduating students with American
citizenship choose to return to the U.S., such as the graduate who will
start his career at Columbus State Community College (exploring the fields
of philosophy, politics, bio-chemistry and computer science, with plans to
transfer later to a state university). This is also true of two seniors who
will apply later in the year to Korean universities, when applications open
there (for international relations in one case, and pre-med in the other),
even though they have already received offers from universities in the U.S.
We also have students who will receive financial aid or scholarships to
study abroad. For example, we have a student who will be attending Biola
University in California on an athletic scholarship (to study international
business), another who has been offered a great financial aid package to
attend the University of San Francisco (where she will likely pursue her
interest in occupational therapy or special education), and yet another who
has received funding from Taylor University in Indiana (for liberal arts
But money and financial aid are not the only important factors. For some, it
is a question of connection, security, or how much they already know about a
college, institution, or place. Some of our students who hold Thai passports
choose to stay in Thailand because their families are here and also because
they can get an education of great value and quality in their home country.
Of the Class of 2007, we have students heading for to Mahidol (for marketing
and information communications technology), Thammasat (for business
administration), Chiang Mai University (for software engineering and tourism
industry management) and Payap University International College (for
international hospitality management).
For other students, it is a question of where they can pursue the kind of
course that interests them. Two members of the Class of 2007 will pursue
their interest in art and design at OTIS College of Art and Design in Los
Angeles. Another student will go to New Zealand to study physical therapy.
One of our graduates is going to Northwest Arkansas Community College to
train to become a fire fighter. Another will go to Sacred Heart University
in Connecticut to study special needs education. Two more graduating seniors
will go to Singapore, a hub for international business, to study business
Another factor for our graduating students may be the question of
difference: Where can they go to experience more of the world and to pursue
other, sometimes very altruistic, aims? We have seniors who will take a “gap
year,” or at least part of a year off, and some will remain in Thailand,
while others will venture to many other places, including Japan, Canada,
China, and Switzerland. Some will work, while others will combine work and
study. Our China-bound student intends to study the language for a year,
while the student heading for Canada plans to continue her studies in French
in Montreal. One of our Class of 2007 members will attend Hume Lake
Christian Camp for the valuable experience of working with youth groups,
while another is planning on spending time in the U.S., the Philippines, and
Thailand visiting, working, and volunteering abroad before attending college
in the U.S. to study communications.
Of course, it is likely that a combination of factors plays a part in where
CMIS graduates go, including other influences not previously mentioned, such
as the fit between the education we offer and where further opportunities
lie. And this is true for the Class of 2007 who will graduate from CMIS in a
ceremony in our auditorium on June 7, 2007. To all of our graduates, your
community wishes you the very best for the future, and we salute you on your
Schools in the South
open amid high security
More than 1,000 schools in Thailand’s three southern border provinces opened
last Wednesday for the new academic year amid heightened security, although
some schools remain closed, rebuilding after arson attacks, and some remain
shut due to teachers’ fear for their safety.
Inter-provincial Teachers Federation chairman Boonsom Thongsripai, who heads
the educators association for the three southern border provinces, said
almost all schools in Pattani, Narathiwat and Yala provinces have opened
except for some schools in at-risk areas where teachers are afraid to go
back to work.
In Narathiwat, Bandohae School in Sungai Padi district, torched during the
school break, reopened with makeshift tents as temporary classrooms.
However, the school lacks textbooks and other teaching materials as they
were burned in the arson.
In Pattani, parents accompanied their children to school on the first day of
the new academic year.
Soldiers and police officers escorted teachers to their schools and provided
security at schools in violence-prone areas.
In suburban areas, more security personnel are guarding teachers going to
school and on the premises. Teachers now travel to school in groups and have
stopped using motorcycles, as solitary travelers are more vulnerable to
hit-and-run attacks. Teachers riding motorcycles were often attacked by
Not all schools have reopened. Pakaruesong School in Nongchik district
remains closed because teachers feel unsafe; although a full complement of
security personnel are on duty at the school.
Students at Banbuego School in Yarang district are attending classes in the
library because their classroom building was burned down. School
administrators said a temporary classroom building will be built soon.