My name is Lai and I am Naga. I was born in Yinchong Village, Lahe Township, Nagaland, which is located between India and Myanmar. Currently, I am a third-year business student at Rangsit University International College in Bangkok.
My early childhood was spent in a war-torn village in Nagaland. I grew up with five siblings in a place where basic infrastructure and transportation were unheard of. It took more than two days to get to the nearest town. There was only one primary school in our village. Since it was a war zone, many unexpected things happened on a regular basis. For this reason, it was very difficult for the villagers to make a living and lead a normal life.
My family decided to move to Lahe Town in hope of finding better opportunities. When we first arrived, life was miserable since we had no source of income. Later, my father served as a full-time pastor, and my mother started her own handloom business.
As time passed, we got more accustomed to living in Lahe. Soon, I started my primary education. Being exposed to hardships and terrors at a young age made me believe in creating a better environment for future generations through education.
The beginning of my educational journey was difficult since we did not have access to a quality education system, proper facilities, or experienced teachers. However, by the Grace of God, I made progress in my studies.
As a child, I dreamed of reaching a higher level of education and bringing positive changes to my community. A family friend supported me financially, giving me a chance to move to Pyin Oo Lwin, a beautiful hill town inear Mandalay. There, I continued my high school education and passed my matriculation exam. With support from the same donor, I was given a great opportunity to pursue a bachelor’s degree in international business in Thailand.
- Age: 23
- Ethnicity: Naga
- Country: Myanmar
School & Program
- Rangsit University
- Bachelor’s, International Business
Goals & Dreams
- Become a business teacher
- Serve as prime minister of Nagaland
- Loan Amount: $5,225
- Amount Left To Fund: $3,375
- Contract Duration: 12 years
- Status: In Repayment
What Others Are Saying About Lai
Studying abroad has been such an eye-opening experience for me. During my first two years, I studied marketing, leadership skills, management and organizational behavior, export-import management and e-commerce, all of which gave me inspiration and ideas to help other people with their businesses. One of the reasons I am studying in Thailand is because it is culturally similar to my country. Nevertheless, it is more developed, and the Thai economy is better than the economy in Myanmar.
Sadly, when I was in my second year of school, my donor went bankrupt, making it impossible for me to continue my third year of college. I almost had to quit the whole program. However, after receiving a student loan from Zomia, I am finally continuing my studies. Upon graduation, I will return to my community to share my business knowledge and experience with my people.
Written by Lai with editing assistance from Zomia’s volunteer editors.
“Being exposed to hardships and terrors at a young age made me believe in creating a better environment for future generations through education.”