Interview with Dr. Sompid Kattiyapikul regarding an Honorary Doctorate Degree awarded to His Excellency, Mr. Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic
Lepetitjournal: Dr. Sompid, please tell us about the relationship between Silpakorn University and France.
Dr. Sompid: Silpakorn has had a relationship with France for more than 30 years. I studied French and pursued my studies in Besancon, France. When I was Vice President of International Affairs, I convinced Silpakorn University members to collaborate with France. We have MOUs with many different institutions in France, first in the fields of archaeology, history of art, arts and languages and more recently in hotel management. The first MOU was signed with Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Bonaparte road. With this MOU, we have conducted artist exchange projects. We also have a collaboration with Paris V which allows our students to do a Phd Degree in pharmacy. And then, we have French partners for other fields, especially in hotel management. Vatel School was created with our partner and it is now well known at an international level.
Lepetitjournal: what are the reasons for Silpakorn University to award an honorary degree to the President Emmanuel Macron?
Dr. Sompid: I always work with gratitude. In my head, I always think that I was a student who received a scholarship. Therefore, I should give something back and this is very important to me. When I became the Dean of Silpakorn University International College, I looked for an opportunity to show our gratitude towards France for the beautiful relationships that Silpakorn has with France over the last 30 years. At Silpakorn, we have had 4 presidents of the University study in France. To express our thankfulness to France, we decided to award an honorary degree in International Business to Mr. Emmanuel Macron to recognize his abilities and contributions to this field. This degree is also for all of the French people. The President of Silpakorn University submitted the document to different committees and the Council of the University made a final decision to honor the President of France.
Lepetitjournal: How will the University welcome President Macron, if he decides to come to Thailand next year when Thailand assumes the Chairmanship of ASEAN?
Dr. Sompid: with Thai hospitality and Thainess, we will do our best as appropriate to receive the Head of State, but it is too early to give details as we do not know yet if he will come and the exact date. We will work closely with the Government. It will be our pride for Silpakorn and Thailand. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the Embassy of France for their support and undertaking appropriate procedures. I hope that awarding an honorary degree to the President Mr. Emmanuel Macron will help reinforce bilateral relations between France and Silpakorn University which were firmly planted 30 years ago.