Chulalongkorn University, the oldest university in Thailand

September 06, 2021

The Chulalongkorn University is the oldest, and among the most prestigious, higher education institutes that you can find in Bangkok, Thailand. Covering a sprawling area in the city, the university stands out as one of Bangkok’s most iconic buildings – and one that’s lasted for a lot longer than most.

The History

Indeed, Chulalongkorn University is the oldest higher education institute found in Thailand, which means that it has quite a bit of history attached to it. The idea for the university was born in the mind of the Thai King Chulalongkorn. He had a vision where Thai society was transformed into a bustling modern state, with his people occupying all kinds of specialist roles. It was to further this idea that the Civil Service Training School was first established in 1899. The later King Rama VI wanted to expand the learning opportunities the school provided to even more citizens and upgraded the training school into a university – the Chulalongkorn University.

The Faculties

At present, Chulalongkorn University consists of 19 different faculties alongside three colleges, a school and a number of research initiatives. Initially, the university only had four major faculties – Medicine, Engineering, Public Administration and Arts and Sciences. Faculties for pharmacy, veterinary science, law and architecture were all established in the 1930s and the number continued to expand in the 40s and 50s. The university now also offers an array of international degrees for prospective students and is associated with a few nursing schools as well.

Life at Campus

The Chulalongkorn University is found in Downtown, Bangkok, in an area known as the Pathumwan District. If you’ve been staying at a Bangkok hotel near BTS – for instance, the Pathumwan Princess Hotel – you will most likely have passed by the university. One of the university’s most striking features is the Chulalongkorn Centenary Park. Consisting of gradually sloping portions, the park boasts an innovative design and is frequented by many students throughout the day. There is the main hall of residence on the campus called the CU iHouse. This 26-storey building offers accommodation to both students and staff with a myriad of furnished lodgings.