A small “global village” has been created with 24 young scholars from universities around the world brought together to engage in academic courses and special activities at Mahidol University in Salaya, Thailand, under the “ASEAN in Today’s World” Project, from 12 March to 2 April 2009.
The project is launched by the Office of International Relations, Mahidol University, in cooperation with Kyushu University of Japan. It is open to undergraduate and graduate students from universities around the world. The project consists of three parts: ASEAN Studies courses (ASC), Asian Languages & Cultures (ALC), and field trips, providing students with a unique study opportunity.
Participants gain six credits from Kyushu University for the lecture part. The Office of International Relations, Mahidol University, supports nine students from Thailand and other ASEAN member countries with its Mahidol Young ASEAN Scholarship, covering the registration fee, accommodation at Salaya Pavilion Hotel, tuition fees, and study trips.
Twenty-four university students from Brunei Darussalam, China, Indonesia, Japan, Lao PDR, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam were selected to participate in the program on a full or partial scholarship from the organizers. The program will expose them to current affairs in the region, including public health, the global AIDS epidemic, the environment, and crisis management, and also introduce them to Asian languages and cultures.
At the opening ceremony, Dr. Surin Pitsuwan, ASEAN Secretary-General, said that ASEAN needed the cooperation of all stakeholders in building its people-oriented Community. A wider opportunity had to be provided for the young generation to learn about ASEAN on the world’s stage and the recognition given by the world to ASEAN.
With the ASEAN Studies courses, the ASEAN in Today’s World Project is a comprehensive academic program covering the ASEAN issues that play an increasingly important role in the world and ASEAN Plus 3 relations. Students not only broaden their knowledge and gain deeper understanding about ASEAN and ASEAN Plus 3 cooperation, but also make friends during the three-week intensive program.