ATCF’S Stu­dent Schol­ar­ship Pro­gram Ful­fills Dreams

Thai-American Business (T-AB) Magazine - - Amcham Thailand Charitable Foundation -

My name is Nattha­porn Paula At­thawut­thisin. I got the AMCHAM schol­ar­ship in my last year of univer­sity. Af­ter I grad­u­ated univer­sity, I ap­plied for an in­tern­ship pro­gram with the In­ter­na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion for the Ex­change of Stu­dents for Tech­ni­cal Ex­pe­ri­ence Thai­land ( IAESTE) while wait­ing for a job. I got a three month in­tern­ship as re­search as­sis­tant at the Depart­ment of For­est Pro­duc­tion Tech­nol­ogy in Helsinki Univer­sity of Tech­nol­ogy, Fin­land.

Thanks to my AMCHAM schol­ar­ship I could af­ford the plane ticket and liv­ing costs at the be­gin­ning be­fore I got the salary from the in­tern­ship pro­gram. Af­ter the in­tern­ship, I got an of­fer to work as a chem­i­cal en­gi­neer with PTT Com­pany ( main of­fice) so I came back and started my first job with PTT.

Then, I re­al­ized that I like to work in the up­stream oil and gas busi­ness as I had an in­tern­ship with Chevron in my third year at univer­sity but I thought it would be good if I could get a Mas­ter’s de­gree in Petroleum Engi­neer­ing first. So, I de­cided to ap­ply for Mas­ter’s de­gree pro­grams in the Scan­di­na­vian coun­tries be­cause Nor­way is an oil pro­duc­ing coun­try and I knew from my in­tern­ship that there are no tu­ition fees at their uni­ver­si­ties. I got an of­fer from Nor­way, so I quit my job at PTT and went to study for a Mas­ter’s de­gree of Petroleum Engi­neer­ing for two years. I ac­tu­ally didn’t have much money but it was just enough to sup­port my­self – air­plane ticket, first couple of months of liv­ing costs. So while study­ing I had to work part- time in a Thai restau­rant in Nor­way so I could sup­port my­self for two years. Af­ter I grad­u­ated from the pro­gram I got a job in Nor­way, but I felt it was time to go back to my fam­ily in Thai­land. So I moved back to Thai­land and have been work­ing with Chevron Thai­land Ex­plo­ration and Pro­duc­tion ever since.

At Chevron, I started as a petroleum en­gi­neer in an of­fice for one and a half years, then moved to work off­shore in the Gulf of Thai­land as a field en­gi­neer for an­other year be­fore I was called back to the of­fice. Then I re­quested to be trans­ferred to work off­shore long term. I have been work­ing as a Drill Site Man­ager trainee for the past three months.

I am very grate­ful to ATCF and AMCHAM for giv­ing me an op­por­tu­nity to ad­vance in life. An­other good thing about the schol­ar­ship was that I got to know AMCHAM as an or­ga­ni­za­tion and make con­nec­tions with AMCHAM mem­bers and my schol­ar­ship friends. I be­lieve con­nec­tions are very im­por­tant. Now we are just friends but you never know how your con­nec­tions can help you some­day.

I be­lieve men ( and women!) can do ev­ery­thing we want to do even though some­times we think it is im­pos­si­ble. I be­lieve I can make the im­pos­si­ble pos­si­ble and that is why I stand­ing at this point in this mo­ment. I would tell other schol­ar­ship re­cip­i­ents to just be proac­tive and keep look­ing for ANY op­por­tu­ni­ties, no mat­ter if some­one gives it to you or you have to seek it your­selves and then DO YOUR BEST!

Over the past 30- plus years, ATCF’S Stu­dent Schol­ar­ship Pro­gram has pro­vided sup­port to more than 2,000 stu­dents. AMCHAM’S schol­ar­ships are made pos­si­ble through fundrais­ing ac­tiv­i­ties or­ga­nized by the Com­mu­nity En­gage­ment Com­mit­tee and direct mem­ber­ship do­na­tions. Ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude the Gov­er­nors Ball Silent Auc­tion, Char­ity Golf Tour­na­ments, and the Amer­i­can In­de­pen­dence Day Pic­nic. In ad­di­tion to fi­nan­cial sup­port, ATCF spon­sors a four- day ca­reer plan­ning sem­i­nar in Bangkok to in­tro­duce stu­dents to AMCHAM mem­ber com­pa­nies through a va­ri­ety of ac­tiv­i­ties in­clud­ing fa­cil­ity vis­its, ca­reer plan­ning ses­sions, re­sume writ­ing and mock in­ter­views. ATCF also in­vites stu­dents en­ter­ing the schol­ar­ship pro­gram to at­tend a three day ori­en­ta­tion camp with an em­pha­sis on com­mu­nity ser­vice.

This year ATCF is sup­port­ing 200 stu­dents from over 30 univer­sity in­sti­tu­tions through­out Thai­land. Be­low is a story from one of our schol­ar­ship stu­dents from 2009 who is cur­rently work­ing for Chevron Thai­land.

Nattha­porn Paula At­thawut­thisin

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