“If One Takes the Right Path, Everything is Happiness” – RMUTT Student “Nong Pla”
Thikanathip “Pla” Paitoon, President of Arts and Student Culture, and a third-year student in the Department of Creative Product Development Technology in RMUTT’s Faculty of Home Economics Technology said that “if we take the right path and the path we enjoy, everything is happiness.”
I graduated high school from Phinhamwichasorn School in Chonburi province and paid for my own tuition since middle school as my family had a burden. I have lived with my grandfather and grandmother as my father and mother have divorced since I was a child. Both my grandfather and grandmother are employees. To lighten their burden, I worked various jobs depending on what people needed. When I was in elementary school I was a dishwasher and helped chop vegetables for my neighbors, and would earn THB 20 each time I helped chop vegetables. However, when the store was not doing well financially, I did everything from sweeping and cleaning, to sometimes doing makeup, and I would earn THB 60 for each makeup session. The store owner was very pleased with the help I had offered and would let me sit in her car when she had to commute to school. She later bought a motorcycle for me to commute to school.
I enjoy doing activities at school, such as participating in competitions to create new products from banana leaves. I had an opportunity to participate in a competition and saw the work of other students in the Department of Creative Product Development Technology, which sparked my interest in this program. I decided to directly apply to this program, but it was not without difficulty. Luckily, I did not have to pay for boarding due to being selected from the department. Nevertheless, I solely had to pay for the water and electricity bill, which was approximately THB 800 per month. Furthermore, I took out a loan from the Student Loan Fund to continue my studies. I did freelance work, such as arranging flowers as well, but professors in the department and my friends would help me financially when I did not have enough funds.
My cumulative GPA was 2.9, however, while in school, I was the second Vice President of the RMUTT student union in 2017, and I am currently the President of Arts and Student Culture. I enjoy doing activities as I will know more people, and do not like to make myself have free time. I have been selected as the representative for my department on various occasions, such as the fruit and vegetable carving competition and the 19th banana leaves and flowers competition. I also received second runner-up in the flower sculpture competition “Legacy of Thai Flowers” at the Nai Lert Flower and Garden Art Fair 2018 held at the Park of Nai Lert in Bangkok, Thailand.
I am a freelance florist during my free time and I am currently doing flower arrangements for my own wedding, called Finish lover. I also do flower arrangements for weddings, ordination ceremonies, and funerals. It is my dream to open a small store after graduating. I do not have a storefront, but you can view my work via Facebook.
I am very proud of where I am today as I am able to send myself to school. I not only do not have to disturb my grandfather and grandmother, but I have given some money that I have earned to earn, although it may not be a large amount. Though I cannot choose whom I am born to, I am able to make the choice to move on and hope that I obtain sufficient knowledge to be the first person in my family to graduate with a bachelor’s degree. If one takes the path that one enjoys, everything is happiness. I have dreamt of becoming a teacher, but when given the opportunity to work in this field, I decided that I wanted to have my own business.
When I feel discouraged, I always think that if there is still tomorrow, I must still fight on, be patient, and persistent. I must think of those that are not as well off as I am and do my best every day. I have worked since I was a child, which makes me invulnerable to any obstacles and challenges. Every time I receive a flower arrangement job, I will always put myself in my customers’ shoes and be honest with them. Presently, most of my customer base has been acquired through word of mouth. Those that are interested in affordable flower arrangements may contact me by calling 082-465-6422.