BANGKOK, Thailand – The Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) participated in the Kasetsart University (KU) Academic Forum, which had the theme "Higher Education and Sustainable Development: Facing Realities and Implementing Change." The academic forum is the highlight of KU's 77th anniversary celebration on 2-3 February 2020.
KU is a founding member of the SEARCA-initiated Southeast Asian University Consortium for Graduate Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC) and as such has been a strong partner of SEARCA since 1989.
The Center was represented by SEARCA Deputy Director Joselito G. Florendo and Ms. Leah Lyn D. Domingo, Public Relations Specialist, at the academic forum that promoted educational alliances among universities from various parts of the world in keeping with KU's foremost goals to establish "Knowledge of the Land."
The forum provided a venue for discussions on the initiatives that universities and other institutions in Thailand, Indonesia, Finland, Canada, Korea, Japan, Sweden, and the United Kingdom have undertaken to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In addition to keynote presentations, there were also two panel discussions: one tackled the changing roles of universities in providing education on the SDGs, while the other focused on research and innovation to achieve SDGs.
Other UC member universities represented at the forum included Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB), Indonesia; University British Columbia (UBC), Canada; and Tokyo University of Agriculture (Tokyo NODAI).
Dr. Rickey Yada, Dean of the UBC Faculty of Land and Food Systems, talked about the role of universities in co-creating urban sustainability in his keynote presentation.
On the other hand, Prof. Dr. Arif Satria, IPB Rector, gave a presentation as one of the panelists in the panel discussion on research and innovation to achieve SDGs. With him as panelist was Dr. Sutkhet Nakasathien, Dean of the KU Faculty of Agriculture and Thailand's representative to SEARCA's Governing Board.
Dr. Chongrak Wachrinrat, Acting President of KU, presided over the opening program and interacted with the participants throughout the forum and the networking banquet in the evening.
As part of KU's 77th anniversary celebration, the delegates to the forum also took part in a ceremony honoring the three founders of KU on the main campus on 2 February 2020. They also visited KU's Kamphaeng Saen Campus where they were received and given a briefing by Dr. Anuchai Pinyopummin, Vice President for Kamphaeng Saen Campus and KU administrators. The delegates also visited the Rice Science Center and the laboratory for Medicinal Cannabis Research at Faculty of Liberal Arts and Science on said campus, as well as world heritage sites in Ayutthaya province.