Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012
Thai Professor Reflects on U.S. Election
A Thai public administration professor who is on campus to observe NMU faculty and learn about comparative politics and government enjoyed being on U.S. soil to witness the recent election unfolding, both at a local polling place and in American media coverage. Kittipong Keatwatcharachai said “everything is different” compared with the election process in Thailand. He teaches at Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University, which has a memorandum of understanding with NMU and where Bill Ball (Political Science and Public Administration, left) has given guest lectures.
“He couldn’t believe the electronic voting system and how the machine ate the ballot at the end,” said Ball, who had Professor Kittipong accompany him to his voting location. “He also found the media polls and the electoral college confusing.”
Ball teaches a course in government and politics of Southeast Asia. He visits Thailand each summer. “It’s nice because when I’m there I can actually get news about Asia that isn’t covered by the media here and is helpful for my class. The university is nice. It’s open, so there are no dorms and it has a presence all over the country. There are more than 100,000 students. Professor Kittipong is observing the differences between our programs and his. He’s also spent a lot of time in the library reading journals and I’ve given him some books to take back. He’ll be here through Nov. 22.”