On Wednesday. 25 August 2010. the Phuket International Women’s Club or PIWC presented its latest batch of scholarships to many Thai students at a ceremony in Phuket Town, bringing the total number of scholarships awarded in its 21 year history to 625.
This ceremony was held at Satree Phuket School, with sponsors, guests, media and the general public attending. PIWC is supporting 55 new students this year, bringing the 2010 total to 197 worth almost 3 million baht as PIWC President Khun Wipa Tanmanatragul said during her welcome speech. Twenty five students from Khao Lak had already received their awards. A number of students have graduated this year with good degrees from Phuket Rajaphat University and Phuket Vocational College. PIWC is also supporting a lunch programme at Baan Kuku School, Phuket.
Every year PIWC volunteers identify and interview young Thai students to award the scholarships. They had to interview about 100 at Rajaphat which took almost 6 hours, to choose 25 students! Many have gone on to successful careers in areas such as graphic art, communications, teaching, nursing, engineering, medicine, science and many more.
Full scholarships awarded to students cover tuition fees, uniforms, books and stationary, lunches when appropriate and any other educational expenses. Scholarships range from 10,000 Baht per secondary school student, per year to 60,000 Baht per year for a medical student over six years.
A non-profit organisation, PIWC club was set up in 1989 and has been growing ever since. It promotes friendship among women of all nationalities and a wide range of activities and social events for members.
Khun Wipa said the scholarships really help Thai students: “I think we have helped arm them with an education to make their way in the world and improve their lives.” PIWC has a deserved reputation as one of Phuket’s major charities through its ongoing activities such as the “Layan Masters” and “Layan International Golf Challenge” golf tournaments, lunches, raffles, book sales, quiz nights and, most notably, its famous annual end of year fund raising party.
This year the party will be held at the Hilton Arcadia Hotel on 13 November 2010 with the Latin American theme “One Night in Rio.” Last year’s colourful party, “20 Years and Still Rocking,” was very successful in raising funds to support the ongoing scholarship programme.
Khun Wipa paid tribute to the PIWC sponsors and the “tireless work and input” of the voluntary committee members. “Thank you all for helping us with this and for helping so many young people to a better life,” Khun Wipa said.
Please see www.phuketiwc.com for further information and if you wish to help and attend their future events.
Phuketindex went to film this heartwarming event and made 2 videos in English and Thai; to show the speeches by khun Wipa; the Dean of Rajaphat University Phuket Dr Prapa Kayee; and student representatives, both current and previous recipients of PIWC generous scholarships; plus some of the many presentations and group photos at the end.