Image: Professor Kelvin Willoughby with Skoltech students and Princess Sirindhorn Scholars.
Under the HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand Scholarship, a program sponsored by the H.R.H. Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand, three Thai students have joined this year’s Skoltech student body. These are Miss Pornsruang Wiwattanakul (Skoltech Materials Science Program), Mr. Khattiya Pongsirijinda (Skoltech Data Science Program), and Mr. Pornpawit Karpkerd (Skoltech Energy Systems Program).
Princess Sirindhorn — who is herself the recipient of an earned Ph.D. degree as well as many honorary doctoral degrees — is highly regarded for her work in science, technology, industry and education in Thailand and internationally. Her Royal Highness has been facilitating the relationship between Thailand and Russia in education and science, having visited Skoltech in August of 2018. The Sirindhorn Scholarship is an elite honor awarded only to winners of a tough nation-wide academic competition in Thailand.
The sponsorship is the result of a visit to Thailand in August 2018 by Skoltech President Alexander Kuleshov, Professor Kelvin Willoughby, Provost Keith Stevenson, and Head of the Center of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Lawrence Stein. All four received a gold medal from Princess Sirindhorn for their services in building up cooperation in science, education and innovation between Russia and Thailand. Early this year, Princess Sirindhorn consented to give her name to the scholarship (HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand Scholarship) and only the very best students in Thailand are selected for the program.
The scholarship includes a tuition waiver for a period of two years (which is the normal completion time for a master’s degree at Skoltech), a monthly stipend starting at 40,000 Russian Rubles (approx. 20,000 Thai Baht), ranging up to 55,000 Russian Rubles (27,000 Thai Baht) by the second year of the program, depending on the students’ academic performance. It also includes accommodation, travel insurance, and a reimbursement of travel expenses (economy class) between Thailand and Russia.
H.R.H. Princess Sirindhorn’s patronage gives the opportunity to three of the best Thai students every year to pursue their study for a master’s degree in Russia at Skoltech starting in 2019, 2020, and 2021.
This represents a further expansion of Skoltech’s role as an international university and is a big step in developing cooperation abroad.
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