Alumni Spotlight

Pumsaran Tongliemnak, PhD ’10

“I first heard about the GSE's Economics of Education PhD program while enrolled in the public policy program at the University of Chicago. I was a Thai government-sponsored student looking for a doctoral program that matched my interest in applying economic knowledge to solve problems in education. 

“One of the proudest moments in my life was when Professor Martin Carnoy called me to inform me of my acceptance to the program. 

“Once my Stanford studies were under way, I enjoyed many enriching experiences, including being a resident host at the Bechtel International Center, serving as president of Thai Student Club and cultivating enduring friendships.

“In 2010, I finished my program and returned to Thailand to work for the Ministry of Education. It was an opportune time because the notion of using economic ideas to find solutions to problems in education had begun to receive attention from educators and the public. International organizations such as the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, UNESCO and UNICEF embarked on educational projects with which I have been involved. 

I have also analyzed policy on all levels of education including early childhood, basic, vocational, technical, higher education and teacher and school improvement plans. Additionally, I have been invited to be an adjunct professor at several universities. 

“I could say that having obtained my doctorate from Stanford has given me many opportunities to work on many interesting projects. I am grateful to Stanford and would be happy to meet GSE people who happen to visit Thailand or are interested in issues about Thailand or Southeast Asia’s education.”

Pumsaran Tongliemnak earned a PhD in economics of education in 2010. He is a policy analyst in the Bureau of Policy and Strategy for Thailand’s Ministry of Education.