By Jessica Kirkand DanRahnUniversity of GeorgiaThe devastation of the Dec. 26 Indian Ocean tsunami was stillbeing revealed when Ed Kanemasu and his University of Georgiacolleagues returned from their winter holiday. Their concernsfocused on Thailand.Mainly, they thought of people in three Thai universities: ChiangMai, Khon Kaen and Kasetsart.”The UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences hasbeen cooperating with these universities for 15 to 20 years onstudent and faculty exchange programs,” said Kanemasu, CAESassistant dean and director of global programs.UGA and the Thai universities have each funded one- to four-monthfaculty stays in Thailand or Athens, Kanemasu said. Thescientists worked on research mainly on peanuts, natural resourcemanagement, food science and crop modeling.ScholarshipsThe Thai government gives scholarships to outstanding studentsstudying abroad in graduate degree programs, too, he said. UGAhas hosted about 20 of these students, mainly in food science,over the past 10 years.So when the CAES administrative council met in January, the group agreed they needed to provide scholarships for victims affectedby the tsunami.They decided to invite each department and unit to donate $500from their scholarship funds. “We felt the needs were soimmediate that we wanted to act quickly,” Kanemasu said.CAES Interim Dean and Director Josef Broder said the goal was toprovide a $1,500 scholarship for each of the three universities.The group quickly raised $6,350.Most units gave $500. Others came up with more. The plantpathology department, because of its long-term relationship withKhon Kaen, donated $1,500.”We are deeply grateful to the Georgia 4-H Foundation,” Brodersaid, “for their assistance in making these scholarship fundsavailable to the recipients.”Response”That was just a wonderful response,” Kanemasu said. “I wasamazed at how much was raised, considering how tight our budgetsare now.”David Knauft, former CAES associate dean for academic affairs,was scheduled to visit Chiang Mai and Kasetsart in April. He usedthe opportunity to present checks to each.Chiang Mai President Pongsak Angkasith is scheduling a trip tothe UGA Athens campus, where he hopes to renew a memorandum ofagreement with UGA.The CAES group’s goal was to provide a scholarship for onestudent for each university. Information officers in the RoyalThai Embassy in Washington, D.C., say students need about $2,400per year for room and board. The King of Thailand pays fortuition for any Thai who passes the college entrance exam.ResultsEach university, however, was allowed to put the money to itsbest use. And each is using the gift, Kanemasu said, in differentplans for tsunami relief.At Kasetsart, he said, the funds are being used to help thefamilies of three researchers and one graduate student who diedin the tsunami at the Ranong Coastal Resources Research Station.Khon Kaen took a group of students to help rebuild tsunami-tornareas. They used the funds to provide transportation and suppliesfor that effort.Chiang Mai is creating a larger fund for students affected by thetsunami. As part of that fund, the CAES scholarship will go tofour students who lost one or both parents in the tsunami.Kanemasu and Broder say they hope to take the scholarships a stepfurther and help provide graduate study at UGA for studentsidentified in this year’s efforts.”We’d like to be able to keep track of the student recipients andpossibly help them financially in the future,” Kanemasu said.(Jessica Kirk is an information specialist and Dan Rahn a newseditor with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural andEnvironmental Sciences.)
The Belfast fighter meets Spain’s Samuel Heredia Carmona who came through the preliminary round.The Irish three day eventing equestrian team – including Tipperary’s Padraig McCarthy – are in action in the cross country section…starting the day 5th overall.In rowing Sinead Lynch and Claire Lambe go in the lightweight double sculls at 3.30. At ten to four West Cork brothers Paul and Gary O’Donovan are in action in the lightweight double sculls.While in sailing both Finn Lynch and Annalise Murphy hit the water in their events this evening.