A young man in the Northeast has wowed people across the country with a wonderful show of respect to his parents.
Annawat “An” Dampatik recently graduated from Ubon Ratchathani University with a degree in engineering and could have got a job at any number of big-city tech firms – but, for now at least, he’s chosen instead to be a security guard.
That’s because his dad is a security guard. And in fact the 24 year-old is patrolling his alma mater alongside the old man.
“Seeing my father wearing this uniform since I was very young, I really appreciate the uniform and this job,” An says on the URU website. “I have special bond with the uniform because I see it as the uniform of a hero.”
An says he’s always been proud of both his parents. “My mother is a farmer and my father is a security guard and they supported me all the way through school.”
Somsuk Dampatik, An’s pop, who’s worked at the university for more than 25 years, says he was both surprised and delighted when his only son told him he wanted to follow in his footsteps.
“I’m glad my son isn’t ashamed of my job,” laughs Somsuk, “but, after all, my earnings put food on the table all these years and paid for his education.
“When he first started out as a security guard I was afraid he might do something wrong or lack discipline, but he’s been doing all right! I just hope he can adopt whatever he learns from this job to become a better engineer when he pursues that route.”
Standing side by side with his dad in their uniforms is like a dream come true for An, and seeing what he does every day at work has given him a better understanding of his father. “Before I started on the next phase of my life I wanted to see what was involved in my father’s work,” An says. “I wanted to know about all the hardships as well as the enjoyable aspects.
“I’m really proud to have this chance. Now I know how hard it’s been for my father, doing this. I know what he has to go through every day.
“It’s been a great experience. I’ve learned to be responsible and do my duty. I have to be concerned about the safety of other people and their property. I have to help people when they have problems around the campus.
“This job teaches you how to be both polite and compassionate. I’ve learned discipline and patience. I normally work about 12 hours a day, but there’ve been tough days when I’ve had to put in almost 24 hours. It’s made me tougher and more mature, which are valuable traits in daily life and in any career I might choose to pursue.”
An, who once almost decided to drop out of high school, plans to keep working as a security guard until November – but there’s one more thing he has to do before he gets on with his engineering.
“I’ve been drafted for two years’ service in the military,” he says. “Once I’m discharged, though, I plan to find work as an engineer, which is my true calling.”