The Research and Evaluation Manager of the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Regional Centre for STEM Education (SEAMEO STEM-ED), Mrs. Yaowalak Jittakoat has been nominated to be the centre’s SEAMEO Service Award recipient (2022/2023) in recognition of her utmost commitment to evidence-based policy in STEM education.
Upon being nominated Mrs. Jittakoat said that she is “so proud to be part of SEAMEO STEM-ED Centre’s mission to strengthen STEM education in the region. It is a huge honor to receive this service award”.
She further added, “This honor wouldn’t have been possible without my supervisor, colleague, and team. I would like to express my heartfelt thanks for all supports and be part of the greatest teamwork ever”.
The SEAMEO Service Award was launched in 2003 (at the 38th SEAMEO Council Conference) with an aim to provide recognition and appreciation to staff members of the SEAMEO centers who demonstrated a strong contribution to SEAMEO missions and goals. In this regard, SEAMEO Secretariat acknowledges staff members’ contributions for their hard work and commitment, as they demonstrate high-level performance, innovation and ideation. The Service Award is held every two years (started in 2011) and the award ceremony takes place at the SEAMEO Council Conference.
Some of Mrs. Jittakoat important achievements include the development of “What Works” program (collecting, identifying, analyzing, and implementing evidence-based education policies that improve learning through practical research and challenges observed in education systems in Asia Pacific), promoting the use of picture books to enhance literacy skills, and organizing “Best Practices Sharing” workshops for school leaders to implement the practices in their schools.
Regarding her work philosophy, she said she lives by the motto “Every day is a step of improvement to contribute the best work to the team.”
When asked about Mrs. Jittakoat, her co-workers described her as working well with both internal and external team members, as she is tactful and diplomatic when dealing with different conflicts. In addition, she is seen to portray nurturing for junior staff in their career growth.
When asked about Mrs. Jittakoat’s nomination, Dr. Kessara Amornvuthivorn, SEAMEO STEM-ED’s Program Director said, “Mrs. Yaowalak is the centre’s great human asset. She has excelled professionally in all performance criteria. Her professionalism has set the high-quality benchmark of the work for the centre staff to achieve”.
Mrs. Jittakoat will join the SEAMEO Service Award Ceremony on February 8-10, 2023 at the 52nd SEAMEO Council Conference.