Growing up in a family of low-income rice farmers, Kalyakorn never dreamed of having a higher education, let alone picturing where she is today.
The girl from a scorching farmstead in Pichit province now holds a PhD in Agricultural Sciences and is a full time lecturer at Chandrakasem Rajabhat University.
As a child, Kalyakorn always wanted to be a nurse. But after finishing high school, she found new interest in animal husbandry.
“There are similarities between animal welfare and nursing. Both of them are about taking care of others, which is my true passion.”
She enrolled in the Animal and Life Sciences programme of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences at Chiang Mai University.
To help ease the financial burden caused by educational expenses, she applied for the Bangkok Post Foundation scholarship as well as a government loan.
“The funds were a great help. My parents didn’t have to pay a baht during my years in university.”
After getting a bachelor’s degree, Kalyakorn planned to enter the working world. But, to her surprise, she was asked by the foundation’s representative whether she wanted to further her education.
“At that time I saw no reason to go for a higher degree. My family wasn’t well-off and I thought it was time to make a living.
“But the representative kept telling me how much a higher education could improve my life and also helped me enrol in a master’s programme. Seeing such good deeds someone has done for me, I thought perhaps that’s the way it was meant to be.”
During the years at graduate school, she also worked as an assistant manager at a pig farm. “The foundation helped with tuition fees while the part-time job provided pocket money.”
Kalyakorn graduated with a master’s degree in Animal Sciences, and thought it was the highest educational attainment she could attain.
But as she started her career as a lecturer at Chandrakasem Rajabhat University, she was granted a university scholarship to pursue doctoral studies.
“It seemed natural to take a further step when you have a master’s degree.”
In 2014, Kalyakorn graduated with a PhD in Animal Sciences, specialising in monogastric livestock, from Goettingen University, Germany.
“I have come far beyond the dream of a typical country girl. I feel thankful to the people who have supported me and pushed me to this point in life.
“Mum and Dad always said they don’t have money or property to give me, and if I could further my education it would be a priceless personal asset”
“Mum and Dad always said they don’t have money or property to give me, and if I could further my education it would be a priceless personal asset. I’m really glad I took their word for it.”