Khon Kaen University (KKU) was one of four regional universities established in 1964 as part of a decentralized development plan for higher education in Thailand. The campus is located in the Northwestern sector of Khon Kaen, just a few kilometers from the center of the city. Situated in a most attractive park, the campus covers approximately 900 hectares. From small beginnings, KKU has grown enormously and is today home to seventeen faculties, three academic support centers, 2 academic service centers, a hospital and a research institute. In addition several new institutes are currently in pipeline and will, in time, open the University's door further to the public and increase its roles, responsibilities and commitments to the region around. Currently the number of students is approximately 17,000 (including 1,700 postgraduates and about 70 students from overseas.) Although some students are housed in one of the 25 Halls of Residence, many students choose to find their own accommodation off campus.