Volunteer in Thailand with Friends for Asia

International University for Monks


This project is available in Chiang Mai.

In the morning, the monks study Buddhism and meditation. Afternoon is class time at the university. English is the language of instruction for most classes. There are roughly 250 students at the university. Approximately half of the students are Thai and half are of other Asian nationalities (Indian, Bangladeshi, Cambodian, Laotian). This diversity makes an international learning environment at an institution focused on the higher education for Buddhist monks. For these reasons, it is a very unique school. The university is located in one of Chiang Mai’s largest and most historic temples and is in the vicinity of Chiang Mai University and other small colleges, which gives the area quite an academic atmosphere. Volunteers serve under the direction of the English department, which is staffed by a highly qualified and educated, bilingual, Thai faculty. Although most of the professors are regular Thais, a few members of the faculty are Buddhist monks.

Volunteering in Thailand – A Day in the Life


Volunteers assist the professors in the English department with their lessons. Additionally, volunteers assist the students outside the classroom informally, practicing pronunciation, writing, conversation and other assignments and studies. There is the possibility of taking a more active role in planning lessons and writing exams. These additional tasks however, would only be offered to volunteers with experience and/or education in the field of university instruction.

Occasionally, the Thai professors may ask their foreign volunteer counterparts to assist with classroom preparation and grading. Many of these responsibilities will be based upon the working relationship between the full-time Thai professor and their volunteer partner. Most volunteers will work directly with their assigned professor for three or four class hours each afternoon. A Buddhist day is selected for each week. During this Buddhist day the university is closed. When a Buddhist day falls on a week day, that day is made up on the Saturday of that week. The university is always closed on Sundays, Thai holidays and Buddhist holy days.


Thailand International University for Monks Volunteer Video

Volunteer Qualifications

Minimum age for volunteers in the International University for Monks Project is 18. Volunteers in the International University for Monks need to be able to speak English fluently, have an open mind, enjoy working with university students and being in an academic environment. The more experience and education/training a volunteer has in university class instruction, the more responsibilities the volunteer will have during their volunteer service.


Volunteer Stories

There are many different volunteer opportunities throughout Northern Thailand and Chiang Mai. But Friends for Asia creates a healthy mix that allows you to create your own individual experience and journey, while still having the support needed to further delve and explore the rich and unique experience of Northern Thailand.” – Martin Brazausky, Illinois, USA

To view all the Volunteer Stories for the International University for Monks Project, Click Here.

Volunteer Fees

Participation in the University for Monks Volunteer Project starts at a minimum of $799 for two weeks. Each additional week is $119.

Volunteer Project Fee Includes

  • Comprehensive Pre-Departure Information
  • Visa paperwork (for projects over 8 weeks)
  • FFA Volunteer Insurance
  • Airport pick up
  • Accommodation during orientation and entire project time
  • Breakfast every morning
  • Lunch every work day
  • 2 day Orientation (including half day city tour, cultural dinner and show)
  • Onsite Coordinator
  • 24 hour emergency assistance
  • Written record of service completion (for volunteers that successfully complete their project).

Volunteer Fee Does Not Include

  • Travel to/from Home and Chiang Mai (airfare, train tickets, etc.)
  • Thailand visa costs (if applicable)
  • International Medical Insurance
  • Cost of criminal police background check (required for this project)
  • Cost of transportation to and from Project site and and accommodation (roughly $2 per day)
  • Lunches on weekends.
  • Dinner

View additional information about the International University for Monks Project

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Thailand International University for Monks Volunteer Start Dates for 2022

  • May 16, 2022
  • June 6, 2022
  • June 20, 2022
  • July 4, 2022
  • July 18, 2022
  • August 1, 2022
  • August 15, 2022
  • September 5, 2022
  • Closed for mid-School Year Break
  • November 7, 2022
  • November 21, 2022
  • December 5, 2022
  • December 19, 2022