On Monday, February 8, 2021, the Faculty of Arts organized Khyentse Foundation Award ceremony for academic year 2020. This year, the Ceremony was organized in a blended online-onsite format as a response to the University’s COVID-19 precautionary measure. The Ceremony took place at Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Building at the Faculty of Arts. Two following recipients received the Award this year.
1. Puritat Hongwiwat, an undergraduate student from the Department of Thai language, whose research is on The Expression of Nibbāna in Buddhadāsa Bhikkhu’s Poetry.
2. Sukanya Charoenwerakul, a Ph.D. student, majoring in Pali- Sanskrit Language, whose dissertation is on 9 Sutras in Bka’ ‘Gyur and Pali Parittas: A comparative study.
The event was presided over by Professor Peter Skilling, a Khyentse fellow, via Zoom, from his residence, and co-presided by Assoc. Prof. Suradech Chotiudompant, Dean of Faculty of Arts at the Faculty of Arts. The rest of the participants joined the ceremony, while keeping social distance, at the Faculty of Arts. The program started with the opening address and the words of congratulations from the Dean and Professor Skilling, which were followed by the talks by the recipients. After the comments from Professor Skilling, Assoc. Prof. Chotiudompant presented the Awards to the recipients.
The participants included Khyentse Award Committee, Professor Suwanna Satha-Anand, Asst. Prof. Pratum Angurarohita, and Associate Dean, Asst. Prof. Nirada Chitrakara, and Head of Department of Thai Language, Assoc. Prof. Poramin Jaruworn. Academic advisors of both recipients, Asst. Prof. Chanwit Tudkeo, advisor of Sukanya Charoenwerakul and Asst. Prof. Arthid Sheravanichkul, advisor of Puritat Hongwiwat were also among the audience.
The Khyentse Foundation Award is given annually to undergraduate or graduate students, selected by the Faculty, for recognition of distinction and hard work in the field of Buddhist studies. The award promotes the non-sectarian understanding of early Buddhism and the study of the involvement of Buddhist teachings in various academic fields, in addition to religious studies, such as literature, linguistics, philosophy, history, and cultural studies. In the past, the Khyentse Foundation awarded scholarships to graduate students at the Faculty of Arts who studied the Tipitaka and Buddhist culture in the fields of linguistics, literature, folklore, Buddhist studies, and Thai studies. Founded in 2001 by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, the Khyentse Foundation is a non-profit organization whose key aim is to support and enhance Buddhist studies worldwide.
During the past decade, the Faculty of Arts has enjoyed generous support from the Foundation, which includes not only scholarships for students, but also full financial support for visiting scholars. In addition to helping motivate research on Buddhist studies, the funding also helps internationalize this area of study which helps strengthen the position of our Faculty as a center of international Buddhist Studies.