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Jaruwat “Dome” Cheawaram, shining from the ground to “The Star” on the stage

©UNESCO

19.09.2013

From a little boy who wholeheartedly falls in love with the sound of music to the winner of Thailand’s famous singing contest “The Star” Season 8, Jaruwat “Dome” Cheawaram now also becomes a pillar of his family. Today he shares great tips to conquer obstacles and achieve success in this special interview.

When did you start to like singing?

I love singing since I was young but I wasn’t serious at that time. I just sang for fun. All members of my family also like listening to music so I’ve absorbed this habit eventually. I always sing wherever I go.

Why did you make a decision to study in the Faculty of Law although you like music?

Actually, when I was in grade 12 that I had to decide to continue in higher education, I would like to study Communication Arts because I also like watching movies and making film. At that moment, I had already passed the examination and was supposed to apply to the Faculty of Communication Arts. Unfortunately, my dad had paralysis and was admitted to the hospital. He had been encouraging me for a long time to study at the Faculty of Law. As I would like to do something for my dad, I chose to study law finally. I thought it was also good for my future.

Did your father’s sickness affect you a lot?

I don’t think that it affected my personal life much. However, it made a change in my family. As I had to move to Bangkok for my study, my dad could help me to find a dormitory or give me a ride if he was fine. However, due to his health condition, my mom had to look after him and I needed to arrange everything by myself while others from rural provinces had support from their parents. I had never been to Bangkok so I needed to adjust myself.

Do you earn any incomes while you are studying?

I was thinking about what I could do. There’s a restaurant in campus that the students usually hang out so I applied for a temporary job. Some senior students in TU Folk Song Club (music club at Thammasat University) performed their shows there. They also asked me to join their band.

When was the hardest time in your life?

My hardest time was when I had to move to Bangkok alone. As a rural boy, I had to adjust and manage everything on my own. Sometimes things went smooth. But sometimes I did them wrong. Most of the students from other provinces were assisted by their parents to find a dormitory and manage things. I felt occasionally that my situation was different from other students. Nevertheless, I thought that although I didn’t have support, I could do it by myself.

How do you encourage yourself?

Definitely, we may feel discouraged when we face bad times. Don’t try to keep that feeling. Let it go and start over again. However, I receive encouragement from people around me. I think that I am lucky to meet good friends and powerful people in music industry who gave me many opportunities and supports.

How do you manage your time when you have to study and work at the same time?

For time management, we know that normally we don’t work for a whole day. Sometimes, we need to sacrifice our time. For example, when you get back from the university, other students may have time to rest or finish their assignments. On the other hand, I have to spend my time after class to work. It reminds me that if you would like to work and study, you must accept that you may be more tired than others. You must bear this condition.

What is a drive that lifts your heart up to conquer all troubles or burdens?

I will think of my family because I will be a pillar of my family. I must ensure that I can support them. I can’t afford to feel weary and should be a leader. My parents used to fight a lot for our family so I must push myself forward to have enough capacity to look after them. My family becomes my encouragement and motivation. They always know that I may feel downhearted sometimes and will call to encourage me.  I can’t find this kind of support from anywhere else.

What is your life goal after becoming this?

I’ll work in this entertainment industry as long as I still have a chance to do. I’ll try to graduate to bring my father a degree. I also have to support my younger brother because he will go to university very soon. I give him advice in life and lesson learnt from my experiences because I want him to get what he wants. All I want to do is to make my family happy.

Do you have any suggestions for Non-Formal Education (NFE) students who want to be successful like you, but they don’t feel confident with their appearance? Do you think it this important?

I always believe that nobody is perfect. Everyone has both strengths and weaknesses. Since nobody is perfect, it means that everyone has a chance equally. It depends on you whether you dare enough and be ready to fight. Nowadays, we have many opportunities to try, so it isn’t an excuse that people in the society will not accept you. There’s always a chance. If you get it, don’t let it go.

Would you like to encourage NFE students who work and attend class at the same time?

As I stated earlier, we choose to do both things so we must accept that we will be more tired than others. I would like you to think that it will pay off in the future. It isn’t only a success but you will also gain experiences that make you grow up. You’ll pass all troubles if you enjoy fighting with it. Don’t be afraid.

Some students may feel discouraged when they have to handle work and study at the same time. They may want to give up. Can you give them some suggestions why we should do both?

I think the future is unstable. We will never know what will happen. It’s good to have both  education and career which enable you to have broader life path in the future. Try to keep all chances and skills as much as you can.

Could you tell us why education is important?

I think education is important for your life. It reflects a long-term advantage, not only to learn just for the examination. We’ll never know what kind of knowledge we need to apply in the future. You should keep collecting your knowledge. It will never be away from you. Moreover, I really like this quotes “Education is infinite”. You can learn every day. As you gain more knowledge, you can use them to collect more benefits in the future.

Interviewed by Panisara Paireepinath and transcribed by Sowirin Chuanprapun, UNESCO Bangkok