Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Royal Profile: Princess Sirindhorn of Thailand

Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn was born 2 April 1955, the second daughter of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. She has two older siblings, The Crown Prince and  Princess Ubol Ratana, and a younger sister The Princess Chulabhorn Walailak.

In 1974, the sucession laws in Thailand were changed to give women rights to succeed, thus placing Princesss Maha Chakri Sirindhorn in line for the throne (Source: Kershaw, Roger (2001), Monarchy in South East Asia: The faces of tradition in transition, Routledge, p. 153.), a place which she presently holds 5th position after her niece Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana.

Her school days were spent at Chitralada School, where she was ranked first in the National School Examinations in the primary level in 1967 and again in upper secondary School in 1972 and 4th in the National University Entrance Exams. She attended  a bachelor's degree from Chulalongkorn University, where she earned a 1st Class Honors/Gold Medal degree in history in 1976, and a Master of Arts from  Silpakorn University, earning a degree in Oriental Epigraphy (Sanskrit and Cambodian) in 1978. She also obtained a second master's degree from Chulalongkorn University in Pali and Sanskrit in 1980. She returned to Silpakorn University to obtain a Doctoral of Philosophy degree in  1986, where she studied educational development. Since obtaining all of these degrees and qualifications, the Princess is commonly known as the "Princess of Technology" or the "Princess of Information Technology", due to her interest and expertise in applying science for the country's development.

Outside of academia and technology, the Princess has several special interests, ranging from languages, The Princess is fluent in several languages. Besides her native Thai, she speaks fluent English, French and Chinese. She is also said to be studying German and Latin. She also has a keen interest in Chinese and it's culture, having visited China several times both officially and privately. She also is a fairly good musician, and plays several instuments including the trumpet, several traditional Thai instruments, the xylophone and saw duang {Source}.

Over the years the Princess has had several health issues. In December 2012, she was hospitalized due to having to have calcium deposits being removed from her chest{Source}.

Other than official duties, the princess also teaches history at the Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy. She also serves as head of numerous organizations, including The Thai Red Cross (Executive Vice President since 1977),  Chaipattana Foundation (Executive Chairman),  Ananda Mahidol FoundationKing Rama II FoundationSai Jai Thai Foundation (President), Prince Mahidol Award Foundation and  Adviser of the Committee of Thai Junior Encyclopedia Project {Source}

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