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Uthenthawai Campus Community Protests Relocation in Heartfelt March Through Bangkok

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Imagine a vibrant morning in the heart of Bangkok, the air buzzing with the spirit of unity and the streets echoing with chants for justice. This was the scene on a particular Tuesday morning along Phayathai Road in Pathumwan district, where a sea of determined faces, belonging to students and alumni of the iconic Uthenthawai campus of Rajamangala University of Technology Tawan-ok, flowed through the streets in a powerful display of protest against the proposed relocation of their beloved campus.

The procession was more than just a march; it was a vivid tapestry of shared memories, hopes, and relentless determination. Setting off at precisely 9:39 AM from their soon-to-be-former campus, the demonstrators embarked on a journey punctuated by significant pit stops – the first being the Chulalongkorn University property management office, a nod to the complex history shared between the two institutions. Their journey didn’t stop there, as the waves of protesters then surged towards the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research, and Innovation, leaving behind a trail of paused traffic and curious onlookers along Phraya Thai Road.

The backdrop to this unfolding drama is as rich in history as it is in emotion. Having been known as the Uthen Thawai Builders School, this esteemed campus has graced a generous 20-rai piece of land, leased from Chulalongkorn University, for an impressive 68 years. Since the lease’s expiration back in 2003, the grounds have been a bone of contention, with Chulalongkorn University eyeing the land for its expansion plans and initiating negotiations for its return as early as 1975. Despite these pressures, the campus stood its ground, maintaining its presence until a ruling by the Supreme Administrative Court last December mandated the school’s relocation.

The plot thickens with the introduction of the education minister’s recent commands, which initially directed the campus to halt new student admissions and expedite its relocation efforts to quell long-standing tensions borne from inter-school rivalries. However, in a twist that provided a glimmer of hope, the order was subsequently softened, allowing for new admissions under the condition that these students commence their studies elsewhere until the campus’s relocation.

Amidst these tumultuous times, a beacon of hope appears in the form of an offer – a new site in Samut Prakan’s Bang Phli district, coupled with government funding to facilitate the move. Yet, the spirits of the Uthenthawai campus community remain unreconciled to this proposed future, their connection to their current home deep and unyielding.

This tale is more than a simple story of a campus in transition; it’s a narrative about the enduring bond between an institution and its people, about the lengths to which students and alumni will go to preserve the legacy of their academic sanctuary. As the streets of Bangkok bore witness to this momentous march, it served as a reminder of the power of unity, the importance of heritage, and the undying love for a place that has shaped countless futures. The chapter of Uthenthawai campus at its current location may be closing, but its spirit remains indomitable, carried in the hearts of those who once called it home.


  1. SammyLee February 27, 2024

    I honestly don’t see why there’s so much fuss about relocating. The new site plus funding sounds like a good deal. #MoveOn

    • Historian101 February 27, 2024

      You’re missing the point, SammyLee. It’s about preserving history and the emotional attachment students and alumni have to the current location. Some things are more valuable than money.

      • TechGuy89 February 27, 2024

        But isn’t progress about moving forward? Clinging to the past can sometimes hold us back from modern developments and opportunities.

    • SammyLee February 27, 2024

      I guess I see your point, @Historian101. I just think we also need to consider the practical benefits of a new, presumably more advanced facility.

  2. GreenHeart February 27, 2024

    This is an example of institutions prioritizing expansion over the welfare and sentiment of their community. Sad to see.

  3. Alumnus_RajTech February 27, 2024

    As an alum, I stand with the students. That campus has a legacy that a new location just can’t replace. #SaveUthenthawai

    • RealistRay February 27, 2024

      Legacy is important, but so is facing reality. Sometimes change, though hard, is necessary for growth.

  4. BookWorm February 27, 2024

    Preserving cultural heritage is crucial. This move erases decades of memories and history. It’s not just about relocating; it’s about disrupting continuity.

  5. DoubtingTom February 27, 2024

    Does anyone else think this might be a bit overblown? Campuses relocate all the time. Why is this one any different?

    • NostalgicNancy February 27, 2024

      Because it’s not just any campus, @DoubtingTom. It’s a place with deep historical significance and a symbol of educational legacy in Bangkok.

      • PragmaticPete February 27, 2024

        Symbols can be moved, @NostalgicNancy. Education itself is an evolving journey, not tied to bricks and mortar.

  6. SarahJ February 27, 2024

    What about the students’ wishes? Have they no say in the future of their own educational experiences?

    • EconMajor February 27, 2024

      Ideally, students’ voices should matter. But decisions like these often come down to finance and politics, sadly.

    • AdminVoice February 27, 2024

      The administration is in a tough spot, but it’s important to find a balance between progress and preserving tradition. Students’ opinions should definitely be considered in these transitions.

  7. VisionaryThinker February 27, 2024

    This could be an opportunity to create something even greater. A new campus means new beginnings. Why not focus on the potential?

  8. HeartInHand February 27, 2024

    It’s heartbreaking to see a community having to fight so hard to keep their home. Solidarity with the students and alumni of Uthenthawai.

  9. FutureBuilder February 27, 2024

    Change is inevitable, but how we manage that change and honor our past is what defines us. Let’s hope for a solution that respects both perspectives.

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