8 Thai universities receive
quality control awards
Education Minister Jurin Laksanavisit and
representatives from the eight universities shown posing for a group photo.
Eight Thai universities have been awarded quality assurance status
after an evaluation procedure to judge their compliance with all
requirements and the standard of their quality assurance systems.
Prof. Dr. Kittichai Trairattanasirichai, right, received the award on behalf
The universities selected for awards in 2009 are Chulalongkorn University,
Kasetsart University, Khon Kaen University, Rajamangala University of
Technology, Thammasat University, Maejo University, the University of the
Thai Chamber of Commerce and Assumption University. The presentation of the
awards took place recently at the Impact Convention Centre in Muang Thong
Thani as part of a national conference on the quality of higher education in
Thailand chaired by Education Minister Jurin Laksanavisit. The selected
universities, ranked 1-8 in the country, will represent and promote quality
education for 20 higher education institutes under the Ministry of
Education, four under the Ministry of Public Health and one under the
Ministry of Defence, all of which have joined the scheme.
The quality assurance system assessment was inaugurated by the Office of
Higher Education Commission in cooperation with the Office of National
Education Standards and Quality Assessment, and allows all universities and
colleges nationwide to participate. The aim of the awards system is the
encouragement and promotion of standardised and continual improvement of
quality assurance and education in Thai universities.
Two stages of evaluation take place, with the first stage assessing
compliance with all requirements, and the second stage determining the
standard of each university’s quality assurance system. Quality assurance
itself focuses on three areas; quality assessment and evaluation, good
operational practice and areas marked for improvement such as quality of
education, plans for development and educational standards.
Since 1997, Khon Kaen University has been one of eight universities in
Thailand which received an award after completing an education quality
At the award presentation, KKU’s vice-president for Planning and Information
Technology Assoc. Prof. Rangsan Niamsanit noted that the result had shown
that KKU provides the same quality as other leading universities in
metropolitan Bangkok, and that it is leading other regional universities.
New Chiang Mai
Oktoberfest to be
‘party of the year’!
In the unlikely event that any of our readers are unaware of the
world-famous Munich Oktoberfest, it’s 16 days of riotous fun, games and
self-indulgence based on Bavarian culture, which, of course, involves vast
quantities of Bavarian food and its most famous product, Bavarian beer!
Thailandfreunde eV’s Chiang Mai chapter may not have been able to run to 16
days, but the new Chiang Mai version of the famous festival has been planned
to be as much fun on its one full day as the original. Oktoberfest Chiang
Mai will take place on October 17, hosted by the Ratilanna Hotel and Resort,
which, coincidentally, has in its grounds a meadow, similar but smaller than
the Munich meadow in which the original Oktoberfest takes place. However,
the Ratilanna’s meadow has one advantage over its rival…the beautiful Ping
Plans for the festival are lavish, and traditionally Bavarian, as emphasised
by the lederhosen and rather unique spotted headgear with horns worn by the
organisers, Dirk Weeber-Arayatumsopon and Wuttipong Arayatumsopon, president
and vice-president of Thailandfreunde and Ajarn Supat Krajaiklang from the
Chiang Mai Culinary Arts Institute at their recent press conference held at
the Ratilanna Hotel.
The festivities will begin at 1 p.m. and go on until very, very late, with
entertainments taking place throughout the entire day, (interspersed, we
suspect, with a great deal of eating and drinking). Featured will be a
magician, clowns and Bavarian dancers and music and other surprises. For the
agile amongst us, a Limbo contest is being organised, which in itself should
provide a great many photo-opportunities! A Karaoke contest and a Bavarian
fancy-dress costume contest will be among the more usual activities… a
‘drinking beer from a large boot without spilling it all over yourself’
contest is one of the more wacky offerings, as is the ‘knocking nails into a
large piece of wood to win free beer’ contest. Another great idea is the
‘Beer Boat ’, a trip on the Ping River, in which you can drink all the beer
you can manage to get down in 20 minutes! Lifejackets not included…
obviously, at Oktoberfest, the imagination is allowed to run riot!
The food on offer will include the famous Bavarian pretzels, baked by a
German master baker who just happens to be here in Chiang Mai, pork
knuckles, German sausages, sauerkraut and many other traditional German
dishes, along with a good selection of delicious Thai food. Ajarn Yingsak
Jonglertjedsadawong, famous chef and TV personality, will be there, cooking
and serving German pork knuckles. No Bavarian celebration would be complete
without Bavarian and German beers – this celebration included! A variety
will be on offer – all day. The festival will end with fireworks and
lanterns…a perfect finish to what promises to be a fun-filled day.
The aim of establishing the festival as an annual event is to introduce
Bavarian culture to Chiang Mai and to Chiang Mai residents, hopefully
strengthening ties between the two countries, as well as to benefit several
local charities. Profits from the event will be shared between the Northern
School for the Blind and the Thai Red Cross HIV/Aids programme ‘Treat
Parents & Prevent Orphans’, which is under the sponsorship of Her Royal
Highness Princess Soamsawali.
Entry tickets for Oktoberfest will cost 250 baht, including a glass of beer
or a soft drink, 100 baht for children between 4 and 12 years including a
soft drink. Kids under 4 get in free. The celebration will formally begin at
2.30 p.m. with a parade including a very large barrel of beer, accompanied
by Bavarian marching band music. Get your tickets at the Ratilanna Hotel,
the Kad Suan Kaew branch of Siam Commercial Bank, Oasis Spa, the Podology
Centre or on the door. Whatever else you do, don’t miss this, the first
Oktoberfest in Thailand.