Upshur County Community Educational Outreach Service hosted a buffet luncheon to welcome international exchange student Parintorn “Pim” Pankaew from Thailand.
Barbara Byrd, president of the Pringle Tree CEOS, started the ceremony with words welcoming fellow CEOS members and the community to The Way of Holiness Church. Byrd presented a special welcome to Pankaew. “We are so glad to have Pim here, I got to meet her yesterday. She is just a wonderful and sweet girl, and has worked so hard to get where she is,” Byrd said. Pringle Tree CEOS club vice-president Rosemary Simons provided overnight accommodations and transportation for Pankaew.
Pankaew showcased her musical talents by playing the piano for all those who attended the luncheon. After playing, Pankaew gave a presentation telling about her life in Thailand, and how she first became interested in music therapy. “I met a music therapy professor from WVU in high school,” Pankaew said. “That is when I knew I wanted to mix my knowledge of music with science.” She followed up with a question and answer session. When asked what her favorite thing is about West Virginia, Pankaew replied, “The people here are my favorite thing in West Virginia.” “Everyone is so nice and polite.”
Pankaew is currently in her second year at West Virginia University. She is working toward a bachelor’s degree in music therapy. She plans on transferring to Georgia to get her master’s degree. She was fortunate enough to have received scholarships that allowed her to make her way to the United States for college.
Pankaew’s ultimate goal is to earn her master’s degree and work for a few years in the United States, and then go back home to Thailand. “There is no such thing as music therapy in Thailand and I want to bring that knowledge back to my country.” Pankaew said.