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Bangkok, Thailand. In the bustling city of Yangon, a young Naynanda Sanyu (Chai) grew up under the care of his aunts. Although he was born in Bangkok, his parents were constantly on the move due to their demanding careers. While they worked in both Bangkok and occasionally Algeria, Chai spent most of his early years away from them, residing in Yangon.

Inspired by his parents’ involvement with multinational companies and their unwavering dedication to representing Myanmar with pride, Chai developed a deep admiration for their work. His father had established a successful tour company in the early 2000s, while his mother thrived as a civil engineer in a Japanese construction firm. Witnessing their relentless efforts and the remarkable outcomes they achieved fueled Chai’s ambition to follow in their footsteps.

In 2018, Chai embarked on a new chapter in his life as he joined Assumption University as a student in the Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management. Beyond simply pursuing a degree, he recognized that his mission extended to cultivating a vibrant social life and immersing himself in diverse communities. He sought to strike a balance between academic pursuits, personal growth, social interactions, and his cherished hobbies.

Since his youth, Chai had always set multiple goals for himself, driven by a desire to earn respect. High school had presented challenges, making it difficult for him to fit in. Consequently, upon completing high school, he resolved to fill his metaphorical bottles with various endeavors. These bottles represented his academic pursuits, hobbies such as music and social skills, as well as self-care activities like working out, swimming, boxing, and acquiring health knowledge.

Chai’s experience at Assumption University, or ABAC, held numerous aspects he cherished. The institution instilled a sense of partial independence, emphasizing the importance of discipline for long-term survival. It unlocked previously closed doors, granting Chai a clearer understanding of life’s complexities. Throughout his four years there, he absorbed invaluable lessons from seniors, gleaning insights on how to navigate the journey of life.

ABAC pushed Chai to take more lessons than the average international student would typically undertake. One of the most challenging lessons he learned was that life relentlessly moves forward, and he alone bore the responsibility for his own path. Although difficult to accept initially, this realization ultimately proved worthwhile. It taught him to discern between doing what he wanted and doing what he needed in order to mature and truly live.

Reflecting on the past decade, Chai contemplated what advice he would give to his younger self. With wisdom gained from experience, he would offer guidance to not be overly emotional about his parents’ divorce. Understanding that people could agree to disagree, even within the confines of marriage or commitment, he would encourage himself to learn how to move forward without taking everything personally.

For Chai, self-awareness ranks among the most vital values. He believes in comprehending the workings of life’s algorithm, pushing oneself to go the extra mile in areas of interest or passion, and embracing the lessons learned from both successes and failures. Avoiding the trap of conformity stands as another paramount value, one that Chai is determined not to succumb to.

In his leisure time, Chai finds solace and joy in playing the guitar. It becomes a medium through which he channels his emotions, allowing them to relax and find calm amidst the melodies. Additionally, he maintains a routine of running and weightlifting, both for pleasure and as part of his daily activities. Recognizing his body as the vessel for his mind, he places utmost importance on keeping it in good condition to navigate life’s challenges. Another hobby Chai has cultivated is listening to podcasts. His curiosity about how individuals of older generations navigated the same phase of life he finds himself in drives him to seek knowledge from their experiences.

As Chai reflects on his journey, he is filled with a profound sense of gratitude and determination. From his childhood in Yangon to his years at Assumption University, he has witnessed the remarkable impact of passion, perseverance, and self-discovery. Inspired by his parents’ unwavering dedication and the lessons learned along the way, Chai is ready to embrace the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. With his metaphorical bottles filled with knowledge, skills, and experiences, he is poised to make a difference in the world and leave his own indelible mark. Through his story, Chai reminds us all that no matter where we come from or the obstacles we face, our journey is a chance to grow, inspire, and create a life of purpose.

Follow the link to see Chai’s amazing VR Tour, created with and hosted on VR Tour with iStaging.

For more information about Assumption University’s International Programs, visit the Martin de Tours School of Management and Economics. or click here to schedule a campus visit.

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