The family of late Prof. Robert B. Banks has announced the creation of a new annual Master’s scholarship and a prize in memory of the late AIT President. Prof. Robert B. Banks was AIT’s third President, having served from 1977 to 1983.
The new annual “Robert B. Banks Scholarship” will be open to all
Master’s candidates, regardless of their field of study, nationality or
gender. Candidates with a high academic performance in their Bachelor’s
studies and having cleared AIT’s admission requirements will be
eligible for the scholarship.
The new annual “Robert and Gunta Banks Prize,” which supersedes the
previous Robert Banks Prize, is a cash award of US $500 for students of
Environmental Engineering and Management (EEM) at AIT’s School of
Environment, Resources and Development (SERD).
Announcing the two new, perpetual academic grants in honor of late
Prof. Robert B. Banks, his youngest son, Mr. Erik Banks, noted that AIT
was the pinnacle of his father’s career. “He cared deeply for the
Institute, its faculty and staff, and its student body and he was proud
of AIT’s central role in preparing students to promote progress
throughout the region,” he remarked. These grants are intended to
promote continued academic excellence and support AIT’s leading role in
regional progress, both of which were immensely important to Dr. Banks.
“We believe that these grants are an appropriate way to help advance
that mission in the 21st century,” Mr. Erik Banks added.
Describing the role of Prof. Banks, AIT President Prof. Worsak
Kanok-Nukulchai stated that “The journey of Prof. Banks from the US to
Thailand was in many ways the story of AIT.” “He was among the
pioneering academicians who came from the United States, traversed the
entire globe, and brought expertise to help establish AIT as the
premier postgraduate institute in the region. During his presidency,
AIT enhanced its international roles by attracting a large number of
donor countries, particularly from Europe, as well as Canada. “This
laid a solid foundation for the long period of growth and stability of
AIT in the late 70’s and 80’s,” Prof. Worsak added.
File Photo: Prof.Robert B. Banks (second
from right) and Mrs. Gunta Banks (third from right) hosting an AIT
reception (January 1978).