SUT makes a strong presence felt and grand contributions on the global CWIE stage.


SUT makes a strong presence felt and grand contributions on the global CWIE stage.


From June 28th to 30th, 2023, Associate Professor Dr Anan Tongraar, Rector of Suranaree University of Technology (SUT) led a delegation of 13 people from 7 Thai universities to attend the 23rd WACE World Conference organized by the World Association for Cooperative and Work-Integrated Education (WACE) at University of Waterloo, Ontario on the east coast of Canada. As a global partner of WACE, SUT has long been a strong contributor to this kind of world conference both as a host (twice in 2000 and 2019) and as a sponsor. This year, accompanying Dr Anan was Assistant Professor Dr Atit Koonsrisuk, Director of SUT’s Centre for Cooperative Education and Career Development who is also Secretary-General of Thai Association for Cooperative Education (TACE) and a Board Member of WACE. At the opening ceremony, Dr Atit shared a panel discussion on the topic of ‘The World of WIL (Work-Integrated Education) in 60 Minutes’, representing Thailand, ASEAN, and Japan, where he gave an update on the challenges and opportunities for CWIE in the responsible region. A lot of things he mentioned at this opening session were about the CWIE development undertaken at SUT as a showcase.


On the second day of the conference, June 29th, the host of the world conference, University of Waterloo, generously organised a three-hour workshop to educate, update, and inspire the Thai delegation on various topics and issues such as enterprise cooperation education, entrepreneurial education, and CWIE student exchange opportunities for Thai students to have work placements in Canada. This interactive workshop was found to be informative and beneficial for the Thai delegates to initiate and to enhance CWIE operation and activities at their respective universities. Waterloo colleagues at the workshop also appreciated the sharing of CWIE updates and experiences by their Thai colleagues as well.


In the afternoon, TACE and SUT impressed a group of audience with a paper presentation on ‘Reinventing Thai CWIE for A New Global Context: Showcasing Thailand as Potential Partner for CWIE Collaboration’ which was under co-authorship of Professor Dr Wichit Srisa-an, Chairman of SUT Council and TACE President, Dr Atit himself, and Associate Professor Dr Issra Pramoolsook, SUT’s Assistant to the Rector and TACE’s International Liaison Officer. The presentation sparked interests among the international audience and will certainly bring more contacts and collaborations from around the world to Thailand and to SUT.


On the final day of the World Conference, the two highlights were, first of all, the renewal of the commitment to CWIE Global Charter by WACE members after the first signing of this global CWIE development blueprint in 2019. Back then, Professor Dr Wichit Srisa-an signed the Charter on behalf of TACE, and Dr Atit did so as well on behalf of SUT. For this year’s signing, Dr Anan proudly represented SUT in the document, re-emphasising SUT’s determination to play a major role in global CWIE enhancement and underscoring his strong support to continue SUT’s role as a CWIE leader in Thailand and ASEAN.

The second highlight was the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between University of Waterloo and SUT which confirms their mutual commitment in CWIE student exchanges between the two partners. The first MOU with specific focus on CWIE student placements between Waterloo and SUT, it was signed by Professor James Rush, Waterloo’s Vice President, Academic and Provost and Dr Anan, SUT Rector. The signing was witnessed by Dr Norah McRae, Waterloo’s Associate Provost, Cooperative and Experiential Education and WACE Secretariat and SUT’s Dr Atit among the other colleagues both Thai and Canadian. This MOU paves the way for increased amount and enhanced quality of CWIE student placements in the future.


This Thai delegation came back home with new knowledge, fresh connections, and larger network of partners for CWIE activities. What they left behind at WACE World Conference is the impression for the other participants on Thailand’s strong collective effort to move Thai CWIE forward and upward on the international stage.


Provided by Associate Professor Dr Issra Pramoolsook

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