WEEK# 50, 6 - 12 December, 2021
In this issue:
1) Year-End Message
Email from AIT President on 2 December 2021
Dear AIT Community Member:
Fall Semester 2021 classes ended last week, and unfortunately instruction had to be conducted online for the entire semester. Generally things went okay, but we know there have been some unhappiness over the WIFI system here on campus—more on that later. We wish the best of luck to those students who are taking their final exams online. We are sorry that Graduation Exercises on December 21 cannot be in-person, and the Office of Student Affairs will be working with the graduating students on making sure the virtual graduation will be memorable—we welcome all of our community to tune in that morning. We thank the students for their patience in adjusting both academically and in their personal life at a time of great stress globally because of the pandemic.
We are still hoping that in-person classes/hybrid instruction can take place starting on January 10, 2022—the beginning of the Spring Semester. However, while Thailand’s COVID-19 situation is slowly getting better and our campus is slowly opening up—with many overseas students actually now on campus, the new Omicron mutant is creating worries worldwide. We will know in the next couple of weeks whether development of this new threat will affect our desire and plan to have in-person classes starting on January 10, and we will keep monitoring closely and keep all of you updated.
Returning to the issue of AIT campus WIFI system, we apologize that it has taken so long to rectify the problem, but I can tell you that we have been working diligently starting from earlier this year trying to select a suitable system and vendor at the right price to improve AIT’s antiquated WIFI network. We are very close to signing a contract within the next two weeks, and installation will take place immediately, with completion being in April. I am very grateful for the patience of our students, our faculty, and our staff, but we will have a state-of-the-art Fiber-To-The-Home system being gradually operational starting early next year.
Finally, you would have heard from the COVID-19 Task Force that vaccinations will most likely become mandatory when the campus fully opens. Even with the new Omicron, there is consensus among scientists that vaccines help the situation. Almost everyone at AIT has been vaccinated, and many have received third dose boosters, but if you are not one of them, for protection of yourself and others in the community, please use the month of December to get yourself vaccinated and/or get a booster. The Task Force has provided many opportunities for our community to do so, and if you cannot comply by January, it is possible that you will not be able to access the campus fully at that time. More details will be forthcoming from the COVID-19 Task Force.
Wherever you will be over the holidays, please stay safe, and watch out for your health. Please be vigilant as you take a deserved break from the pressures of a world suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to seeing you all in January, and we certainly hope that in-person classes can re-start at that time.
2) Vaccination Protocol and Updates
Email from the Director, Office of Academic Administration on 4 December 2021
Dear AIT Family,
Vaccination Requirements in preparation for Possible Campus reopening in January 2022 – As alerted by the President in his recent email, vaccination requirements will be put in place as we prepare for the possible reopening of the AIT campus on 10 January 2022. We would like to provide further details on the vaccine protocol and requirements for members of the AIT community, as well as guests:
§ For all employees – If you have been vaccinated, please submit your vaccination records to HR as soon as you can. If you have not taken the vaccine and are not able to submit a vaccine certificate, you will be required to take a weekly ATK test and submit a negative result to be allowed entry into the campus once AIT reopens fully.
§ Students – All students should have already been vaccinated. Make sure OSA has your vaccination records.
§ Dependents – It is important that everyone residing on campus, including dependents, should be vaccinated as soon as they can be.
The AIT Management Team (AMT) members will manage the vaccination status of their respective constituencies, as well as monitor and enforce the above policy for employees and students in their respective Schools, Centers and Units with effect from 10 January 2022, in line with our plan to engage in Hybrid instruction beginning from this date in the Spring 2022 Semester.
For guests, the following will be the vaccination protocol:
§ Day sponsored visitors – They will need to submit their vaccination record to their sponsor prior to their visit. This is the responsibility of the unit, and if the size of the group is over the AIT-prescribed limit, then the TF needs to be informed.
§ Day unsponsored visitors – They will need to show their vaccination status which will be subject to inspection at Gate 1, along with the usual temperature check. (As a result, at least initially, please be patient if there are queues at the Gate.)
§ Overnight guests – Hosts of overnight guests at AIT (AIT Conference Center and on-campus residents) must inform the Task Force and present proof of vaccination status or submit a negative ATK test result (with certificate) 72 hours prior to check-in.
As the President said, we strongly encourage members of the AIT community to avail of the various vaccination channels which are being provided by the Thai Government from 1-28 December 2021, for those who have not received any vaccine yet as well as third/booster shots. For those students/staff who are currently overseas, please make sure you get vaccinations and/or boosters before you come into Thailand. It is vitally important that as a residential campus, we all do our part in ensuring the safety and well-being of the community. You can register through any of the mobile networks listed here:
§ True: https://vaccine.trueid.net
Further details are available at: https://twitter.com/prdthailand/status/1463064015030996994
Booster Shot for those who received two doses of AstraZeneca – We just received news that if you received two doses of the AstraZeneca, with the second dose administered before 31 July 2021, you can now register for the third booster shot which will be either Pfizer or Moderna. Bookings can be made through the above mentioned mobile phone operators and the vaccine will be administered at the Bangsue Grand Station during December 2021. If you originally received both of your initial doses of AstraZeneca at the Bangsue Grand Station, you do not need to register for an appointment. An SMS will be sent to you automatically with the date and time.
Issuance of free e-Vaccine Passport – The Ministry of Public Health has announced that it will issue the e-Vaccine Passport for those who have been vaccinated in Thailand, free of charge during 1-31 December 2021. There is a quota of 5,000 e-vaccine passports per day. Further details are provided in the link below:
Gatherings – With immediate effect, gatherings of up to 50 persons (indoors) and 100 persons (outdoors) are now allowed. But you must inform the Task Force of gatherings of 25 or more participants. However, organizing any activities that are prone to the spread of disease are still not allowed. Social distancing must be observed at all gatherings. The Thailand COVID-19 cases are going down very, very slowly, though be careful and be vigilant at all times.
Change in Quarantine Requirement for Arrivals from Africa – Thailand has banned arrivals from eight African countries from 1 December 2021, out of concern over the Omicron variant. The countries are Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe. In addition, anyone arriving from countries in Africa not subject to a ban will still have to be quarantined for 14 days and be tested repeatedly for COVID-19. New arrivals to AIT from Africa will accordingly be subject to revised Phases 1 and 2 which will be communicated soon.
Revised Zoning of Provinces – The CCSA has approved a new zoning, reclassifying several provinces on its color-coded zoning scale based on COVID-19 infection rates and reopening measures. Under the revised zoning, there are no provinces classified as “dark red” with stay-at-home orders. Pathum Thani, where AIT is located, has been reclassified as a “blue zone,” or pilot tourism area under the government’s “Sandbox Program”, which is reopened to travelers entering the country from overseas, with effect from 1 December 2021.
As you will have seen in the news, this virus appears to be very tricky and mutates at random and frequently. Omicron has been designated a variant of concern, and according to the WHO, the most effective steps individuals can take to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus is to keep a physical distance from others; wear a well-fitting mask; open windows to improve ventilation; avoid poorly ventilated or crowded spaces; keep hands clean; cough or sneeze into a bent elbow or tissue; and most importantly get vaccinated. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that despite the relaxation of measures we must still have a vigilant mindset and continue to adhere to good practices.
While countries around the world await more scientific data about the COVID-19 Omicron variant, many have issued travel restrictions, which vary from full border closures to suspending flights, enforcing quarantines, restricting arrivals, and requiring testing etc. Therefore, during this uncertain phase and given the changing circumstances, it is advisable to seriously reconsider any international travel plans and, if you do travel, check with airlines and embassies prior to any international travel.
Please check with the Task Force if you have any queries and also visit the Intranet page where all COVID-19 related information and updates from the Task Force are available.
Thank you for your cooperation.
AIT COVID-19 Task Force
3) Delta Resilience and Risk Governance Expert Forum GBM, Bangladesh
Join us in the Delta Expert Forum and enrich your understanding about the Asian Deltas!
Expert Forum-Ganga Brahmaputra Meghna (GBM) Delta, Bangladesh
Scan QR Code to Join
As we are aware that River Deltas in South and Southeast Asia are being altered due to the natural and anthropogenic causes and delta dwellers and associated life, livelihood and development becoming more vulnerable. It is of utmost priority for us to create a space where we match the real challenges of the areas with the authorities who invest and address those challenges via plans/ policies and others.
Disaster Preparedness Mitigation and Management (DPMM), AIT in collaboration with Living Deltas Hub (LDH) is organizing the ‘Delta Resilience and Risk Governance Expert Forum’- Series with the aim of strengthening the research and expert/ administration coherence. The delta on focus for the second event of the Delta Expert Forum series is the Ganga Brahmaputra Meghna (GBM) Delta, Bangladesh. This forum brings together dignitaries who have been closely invested in research and administration in Ganga Brahmaputra Meghna Delta (GBM), Bangladesh to deepen our understanding of the environmental and anthropogenic challenges followed by the necessity of the amalgamation of science and governance perspectives in building the delta resilience.The insights and discussion outcomes of the forum will contribute to link the actual on site experience and realities in the current and future plans, policies and strategies for strengthening the coherence, improving delta resilience, and eventually achieving delta sustainability.
4) THE Campus Live Asia: New Strategies for University Success
Registration Link: https://www.timeshighered-events.com/live-asia-2021/page/1839009/register
Date: 14 December 2021
Time: 8:15 AM to 3:45 PM
5) The Circular Economy Webinar Episode III: EV Battery Recycling
We are pleased to invite you to the Circular Economy Webinar Episode III: EV Battery Recycling hosted by the Embassy of Finland in Bangkok, Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) and Ministry of Industry (MoI), Thailand.
Thailand aims to be an electric vehicle production hub, and the world largest EV battery factory is under construction here. What are the plans to develop EV battery recycling in Thailand?
Finland has been involved in the development of EU-level for EV battery recycling strategies and technologies. What are the experiences and learnings from Finland?
This webinar with the leading experts from Thailand and Finland aims to capture the robustness of these developments sharing the experiences and lessons learnt.
We hope that you will be able to join us and contribute to this event. Join us on Tuesday, 14 December 2021 at 13:30 hrs. (Bangkok time)
For registration, please click this link: https://www.ait.ac.th/2021/12/invitation-to-the-circular-economy-webinar-episode-iii-ev-battery-recycling/
Thank you and look forward to seeing you there!
Office of Advancement and Alumni Affairs (OAAA)
6) AIT Tech Talks on Tech for Sustainability: Leveraging Technology to Solve Sustainability Challenges
This fourth event will focus on the applications of Technologies for Sustainability: Leveraging Technology to Solve Sustainability Challenges ranging from nature networking for urban greening and wellness, near real-time technologies for monitoring land cover changes to support the implementation of the Paris Agreement, to technology for supporting farmers toward low-carbon emissions in the rural areas and bamboo management for community livelihoods. The event will also highlight AIT's strength, leadership, and positioning in Tech and Sustainability.
You are cordially invited to attend this exciting event.
- Keynote presentations from experts in AIT and from the Industry
- Technical talks by AIT faculty and experts
- Interaction with AIT Researchers
Training Courses/ Conferences/ Workshops
Faculty Position: Assistant Professor, School of Engineering & Technology (CIE-TRE)
Deadline: 15 December 2021
Faculty Positions: School of Management
Ref: 7/ 21
Deadline: 14 January 2022
Position: Business Development Manager, AI Center
Ref: 37/ 21
Deadline: 30 November 2021
Position: Assistant Administrative Officer, Admissions and Scholarships Unit (OSA)
Ref: 29/ 21
Deadline: 15 December 2021
Position: Irrigation Engineering and Management (IREM) Lab Supervisor (SET-WEM)
Ref: 9/ 21
Deadline: 31 January 2022
Position: Laboratory Senior Technician, Hydraulic Lab (SET-WEM)
Ref: 7/ 21
Deadline: 31 January 2022