Alumni from Grenoble Institute of Technology - Engineering studies
My name is Jiravan MONGKOLTANATAS. I am studying in France in electrical engineering under the scholarship of the Ministry of Science and Technology, Royal Thai Government. Now I am in the second year of Master’s degree in engineering school Institut Polytechnique de Grenoble - Grenoble Institute of Technology (INPG). My special major study is on “Energy”. This is my third year in France. I spent my first year (April 2008 to July 2009) on French language course. I have been studying in INPG engineering school since September 2009.I have completed my course class works and is undertaking my last semester internship study for 5 months in the laboratory of my university. The subject of my internship is “Stockage pour stabilite du reseau electrique” (Energy storage for improve stability electrical system). I will start my Doctor’s degree in September this year. The course will mainly emphasize on research works in the same laboratory. For the thesis, I will continue on the same subject of my internship study.
As there has been very few Thai students graduated in this field of engineering from France comparing to from other countries such as U.S.A. and U.K. etc. Nevertheless according to knowledge, France has developed this technology to some extent which is at the same level; even more advance in some aspects than other countries. Therefore in order to broaden my own knowledge and experience and to enhance Thailand national capability on the development of advance energy. I and my scholarship sponsor had then decided; France would be the most appropriate country for me to undertake my further education on different facet of this technology. Furthermore this would result in more cooperation in the research and development of this technology.
During the passed 3 years in France, I have learned and gained enormous new knowledge and experience which included both good and disfavor impression but overall it is my great experience. I had encountered number of difficulties during the 2-3 months because I could not speak French fluently. Fortunately great assistance had been render to me from most existing Thai students. It took a few months for me to adapt myself to the new culture and living environment. Communication happened to be the main problem. It is very essential to be able to speak French fluently. Everything seems to be much easier if you can speak French in this country as miscommunication was alleviated.
During French language course seemed to be my good time. I had much free time to travel around in France and in other neighboring European countries. Transportation and other communication are very convenient at a reasonable cost. It is very worthwhile for me to have an opportunity of about one year to complete this language course in France. I had gained a lot of experience especially the way of life and living as a foreign student in a very unique European country as France as I have to study here for at least another 3 years.
About the admission to the university, I had applied for it in March 2009 after the language course and was accepted for the Master or Doctor’s degree without any testes on French. However, I had already contacted this university before I came to France and was accepted on technical capability basis. As a matter of fact, the French language certificate is not required for engineering school in Master’s degree and Doctor’s degree. However, all lectures for the Master are in French but for the Doctor’s degree, student can to submit thesis in French or English. Nevertheless; in my opinion, foreign student should have fluent French bilingual that is one of the most important things needed to live and study in France. Clear understanding communication will ease living and study in France much more comfortably.
I have been taking engineering course on “System energetique et marche” (Energy systems and associated markets program) of the “Institut Polytechnique de Grenoble” (Grenoble Institute of Technology (INPG)) since SEPTEMBER 2009. This program of INPG is aimed for the French Degree "Diplôme National d'Ingénieur Grenoble INP-Ense3" (equivalent to Thai Master's degree). According to the university academic regulation, this degree is 3-year course. However as I was graduated on electrical engineering Bachelor’s degree, I was then exempt from taking class lectures on fundamental engineering subjects for the first year students and entered directly to the second year course. This meant that I will take only 2 year for this Diplome d’Ingenier. This certificate is like a work permit for ones who work as engineers in France. I am at the last semester of this program when all students have to undertake internship study for at least 5 months .In some Doctor’s degree programs of the university, students who want to continue for Doctor’s degree; have to take additional research courses to complete with a “Master de Recherche” (Master’s degree in research). In the last year student can take 2 degrees at the same time but it is not necessary for me to do so. However as I have to take only 2 supplementary courses. Furthermore during this last semester, I have to work only in the laboratory of my university for my internship study and will submit 2 reports to complete my preliminary program. The first report will be on the aspect of different engineering problems solving. The other will be on the aspect of research and development. I therefore decided to take courses for the second Master’s degree.
Generally it is not so difficult to study for higher degrees on engineering in France. However for a foreign student who just started to be familiar with French like myself. It therefore happened to be a very hard work for me. During the first year in the university, I almost have had no free time. Besides language barrier, I had to take about 16-17 subjects within 4 months time of each semester. Furthermore some subjects had to undertake experimental works or small projects. I had to work much harder than other students who were influent in France. I had to work with full effort in order to catch up with and be able worked with my classmates on experimental and small group projects. Although it occurred to be very harsh for me but it was also a very challenging task for my future achievement. As I have learnt gained enormous various knowledge, different idea, and experience, etc. especially collaboration on academic activities with other technocrats.
At present I am quite happy and enjoy my study and living in France. I am also quite confident that I will be able to complete my Doctor’s degree program within the expected time of another 3 years and be able to exploit the knowledge and experience gained from this study for the future development on energy engineering technology in Thailand
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to all Thai officials who look after me as well as my friends who have kindly render all assistance to me during my study in France. Needlessly to mention about my advisor and other instructors who have patiently taught and guided me to this competency level. Thank you very much once again.