The Royal Education Council (REC), Ministry of Education, Bhutan has sought a partnership with the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT). A delegation from REC, led by its Director, Dr. Sonam Wangyel, while expressing admiration for AIT, stated that AIT enjoys enormous goodwill in Bhutan.
Dr. Wangyel stated that REC is interested in teacher’s training, enhancing ICT skills, developing agriculture business programs, and participation in joint projects. Bhutan is trying to capitalize on the concept of Gross National Happiness, while at the same time focusing on capacity development.
The delegation informed AIT that the King of Bhutan established REC in 2007, but since then it has been transferred to the office of the Prime Minister. The mandate of REC is a focus on innovation, and introduction of reforms in the education sector.
Welcoming the delegation, Dr. Jonathan Shaw, Executive Director, AIT Extension stated that AIT has considerable expertise in the field of education training and development in Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Thailand, and particularly AIT has a lot to offer to Bhutan, and AIT can create customized programs depending on the needs of REC, he said. He remarked that REC could also engage with the Yunus Center at AIT, which is dealing with issues related to social business and microfinance.
Dr. Rajendra Shrestha of AIT’s School of Environment, Resources and Development (SERD) mentioned AIT’s contribution to Bhutan and the role played by AIT alumni in the field of environment, forestry and natural resource management. He expressed interest in REC’s Teachers Needs Assessment program. Dr. Sangam Shrestha of AIT’s School of Engineering and Technology (SET) stated that AIT could collaborate in contributing towards the development of ICT in Bhutan. He suggested student and faculty mobility, along with short