Alumni Establish Association Established At Gathering
By Tim Vutha
UCAA President Sean Thornin said despite
their busy careers, the members of the newly
formed association will collaborate their time
and resources in order to give back to UC.
Hundreds of UC alumni reunited to give birth to The University of Cambodia Alumni Association (UCAA) on Saturday, March 7, 2009, at the UC Conference Center.
“The minute you enrolled at UC, you became part of the UC community and you remain so today,” President Dr. Kao Kim Hourn said to the gathered alumni. “We warmly welcome distinguished alumni back to The University of Cambodia.”
H.E. Samraing Kamsan, the UC President’s adviser, said UC is proud to see the alumni work together to benefit the university and the younger students.
“We want to see them be good leaders,” he said.
He highlighted that once UCAA begins running, it will offer many benefits to UC, its students and its graduates. Not only will it serve as a network of communication among alumni, the association will be able to provide feedback to the university, aid in recruitment and fund raising, and offer advice and career advancement opportunities to current students.
“UCAA will send a good image of UC to the outside world and establish a strong network among UC alumni,” Samraing said.
During the March meeting, the alumni engaged in an election campaign where they nominated themselves and their friends as candidates for the five UCAA officer positions. The candidates each gave a 5-minute speech to reveal their individual capacities and perspectives. All alumni who attended the gathering then voted on the officers. The winners were:
Sean Thornin, President
The leaders elected to the first mandate of the UC
Alumni Association (from left to right): Sean Thornin,
President; Pich Panha, Vice President of
Administrative Affairs; Tep Chakriya, Treasurer; Kim
Chantha, Vice President of Technical Affairs; and Soch
Pich Panha, Vice President of Administrative Affairs
Kim Chantha, Vice President of Technical Affairs
Tep Chakriya, Treasurer
Soch Kunthea, Secretary
All other candidates became UCAA committee members.
More photos from "Barbeque with the President"
Sean Thornin, who earned an MBA from UC in 2006, quickly adopted a new perspective for the future as the newly elected President of UCAA.
“I wish to remain part of UC, establishing networks for graduated students where we can exchange experiences with one another," he said. "Even though we are busy working, we devote our time and resources to benefit UC."
For his 2-year mandate, Thornin has short-term, medium-term, and long-term plans. First, he wants to arrange the UCAA office and prepare the regulations and policies for the association to run smoothly. Next, he wants to conduct regular meetings among the members to discuss what UCAA will do for undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate students. Moreover, he will attempt to raise funds to help
students and the community. As part of his long-term vision, he wants to help the university organize student exchange programs between UC and international universities.
As President, he also offered his perspective on ideal leadership.
“I will try to manage people by heart. It is a long-term strategy, and it is the most successful way to be a leader,” he said, preparing himself to be a strong President. “A manager won’t always be a leader, but a leader can be a good manager.”
UC Student Senate Vice President Riel Rathsatya attended the event and said he looks forward to how UCAA will affect UC.
“We can depend on them to help us find jobs or learn how to apply for jobs successfully,” he said.
Rathsatya said upon graduation, he plans to enroll as a member of UCAA and run as a candidate for President as well.
Following the ceremony, the alumni, students, and the staff gathered in a catered reception.
“We had a nice party together. We ate, drank and danced contentedly as a sign of good relationships at UC,” Rathsatya said.