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Parami students preparing to present research projects at international conference

A Parami University student from the Taunggyi learning hub attending an online class

While trying to achieve academic excellence, Parami students are highly motivated to dedicate their time to hone their skills and give back to the community through student-led club activities and online opportunities. Along with students from community schools in different regions of Myanmar, five first-year students from Parami University volunteered at the Post-Secondary Education Forum (PSEF). This online forum started in January 2024 and will end on March 25, 2024. Post-Secondary Education Forum (PSEF) intends to support ten mini-research projects led by students and youths from Myanmar. PESF provided the researchers with training to initiate their research proposal and financial aid to run their projects.

This mini-research project aims to understand better the impacts of these needs and challenges and the landscape of the post-secondary education sector in Myanmar and its border areas. PSEF's objectives are: 1) To identify the needs and map the similarities and differences between institutions; 2) To understand better the impacts of these needs and challenges and the landscape of the post-secondary education sector in Myanmar and its border areas; and 3) To increase the awareness of the critical role of post-secondary education in Myanmar and its borders among scholars and practitioners.

Ten research projects were selected, including three by Parami University students. In June, the researchers will present their findings at the international conference hosted by Inya Institute at Chulalongkorn University, Thailand.

Research project: Post Secondary Education of Karenni Displaced Students

By Hnin Ei Wai Lwin and Khu David Ta Keh 

Hnin Ei Wai Lwin and Khu David Ta Keh teamed up to research the Post Secondary Education of Karenni IDP to learn how Myanmar's political crisis has affected the Karenni State students. They attended training, presented their opinions and findings, and worked on our research. 

"When I participated in this research, I could see how our education system is getting worse. That forces me to start my dream of establishing a youth center in my hometown. Moreover, the essential skills for research taught by our trainer, Andrew, helped me a lot in my academic journey and gave me a lot of knowledge. We are going to an international conference in June," said Hnin Ei Wai Lwin. 

"Our ultimate goal was to produce a research report on our topic: Post-secondary Education of Karenni Displaced Students within the ongoing Civil War. One of the most precious things I have learned is the real conditions of post-secondary education in Myanmar right now, which is an important academic journey to transition from basic education to higher education in Myanmar, especially in vulnerable communities. Throughout the program, I have learned and applied all the steps essential to conduct ethical research. I have learned to navigate the study and workload without affecting either side." Khu David Ta Keh 

Research project: The Challenges of Access to Continuous Quality Secondary Education in Conflict Areas in Myanmar 

By Shwin Thant Lei and Khin Yadana Kyaw

Shwin Lei and Khin Yadana Kyaw were interested in studying the possible challenges people in conflict areas face in accessing and continuing education after the political crisis.

"I learn the methodologies of qualitative and quantitative research. Since we opted for qualitative research methods, there was much to learn, especially in the challenging data-cleansing process. This experience encouraged me to overcome my previous hesitation about the data cleansing step. I expanded my network of friends in the research field and established more connections to explore further research project opportunities." Khin Yadana Kyaw

"At that training, our teacher, Saya Andrew, taught and guided us on how to do the research paper step by step. We also made a presentation related to our research results. Currently, we are making the data collection. Therefore, we are contributing our research survey to students from community schools in three conflict areas and conducting interviews with teachers and community leaders from community schools. After collecting the data, we will code with those interviews and write the final research paper. All in all, this program encourages us to do further research for the community's well-being." Shwin Thant Lei 

Research Project: Educational Landscapes and Changing Dynamics in the Ah Nyar Region

By Khant Razar Kyaw and Ye Yint Maung 

As a researcher of the PSEF research program, Khant Razar Kyaw is particularly interested in the education sector in the Ah Nyar region, the tangible conflict zone in the Northwestern part of Myanmar, and the educational dynamics in the Ah Nyar region after the political crisis in the country. He worked on the research project with his close friend and research colleague, Ko Ye Yint Maung.

"From the experience from the research project, I believe I can apply the concept of research methodologies and analysis skills in further community research and action change in the multidisciplinary studies in and beyond the liberal arts at Parami University. As a researcher, I have become part of the study of the readiness, accessibilities, and supportiveness of the education sector in the Ah Nyar Region. Hence, the further contributions from this research on educational landscapes and dynamics enhance my knowledge, experience, and understanding of qualitative action research in the educational sector, too."—Khant Razar Kyaw  

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