Of UWC Thailand and serendipity

The best intentions, expressed in wholehearted sincerity, seem to bring out the universe’s mighty response.

Sitting here in Phuket Airport, on the way back to London via a half-day stopover in Bangkok for two more, completely unexpected catch ups that will bring me great joy…thinking of how the Mind and Life ‘Power and Care’ Dialogue + UWC, incl the reunion and upcoming #uwccongress, in these last 3 months, have led one beautiful step to another to me having had this unbelievable chance, en route to Japan – who would have thought?! – to visit UWC Thailand, our UWC movement’s 16th and newest college, in the magnificent grounds of the amazing integrated sports, wellness and hotel complex of Thanyapura Phuket.


My visit came just two days before the College’s official opening on Oct 1st, to be graced by HM Queen Noor of Jordan.

I got some fabulous meetings in with Julian Whiteley, head of UWCT who oversaw its transition from Phuket International Academy into the UWC fold. Julian was head of UWCSEA for 12 years before, presiding over a tremendous period of growth and increasing excellence for SEA. Then I had to tear myself away from talking shop with Amy McConnell Franklin, director of Social Emotional Learning and Mindfulness, during which I got to plunge in deep again in my innate joy of research and scientific investigation of things I find so important, with a passionate fellow practitioner who believes wholeheartedly in using these findings to make the real difference they have the potential to make, to those who need them.

I have yearned towards my own personal ‘blue sky’ goal of putting life skills in the hands of every youngster, through education, ever since I established Living Potential 11 years ago to deliver career development for young people and intercultural bridging for organisations. My twin aims for my company were always explicitly intended inside me as ‘my way of giving back what UWC gave to me’. So, to be part of this marvellous trajectory unfolding now is literally a dream coming true.

I had two other meetings with the CEO of Thanyapura on their expansion plans, and their mindfulness coach, on potential collaborations, so watch this space. Gotta run – about to fly 🛫

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