Communication Studies Emeritus Professor Tom Knutson has returned from Thailand, where he has arranged for Sacramento State graduates and others to serve for the seventh time as English-language tutors at the Chitralada Royal Palace School.
Situated on the grounds of one of the royal residences in Bangkok, the prestigious school is under the patronage of the Thai royal family. More than 30 people from Sacramento, including 23 Sac State grads, have participated in the program since its inception in 2006.
Former Chitralada participants from left to right: Professor Tom Knutson, Simone Guazelli, Erin O'Brien, Ryan Little, Amy Selix and Geoffrey Hattersley.
The school year starts in mid-May and ends in mid-March 2014. Applications for the 2013-14 program are available by request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline for applying is Friday, March 22.
Preferred candidates are communication studies majors, English majors, or graduates with a TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or English Education emphasis, although applicants with different academic backgrounds are welcome. Bachelor’s degree holders are desired. (Applications from those about to receive their degree in May 2013 are encouraged to apply.) Airfare, accommodations and a salary are provided for program participants.
Knutson’s connection with the school was established because his good friend Geoffrey Hattersly, a former speechwriter for British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, is the director of the school’s English program. “It’s a life-changing opportunity,” says Knutson, who has taught and conducted research at several Thai universities. “Working there will be absolutely invaluable to them.”
Sac State grad Sarah Ruch readily agrees.
“This opportunity is amazing, but the year went by entirely too fast,” she says. “I learned more from my Thai students than I taught them.”
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– Alan Miller