Updated : July 25, 2019
Major revision : July 26, 2019
Updated : August 8, 2019
The list is not exhaustive.
There are some nicknames which I do not know enough or I do not have the courage to explain. They include
- Saya Maung (Given by a girl to her teacher/boy friend)
- Bo Daw (Could be due to reverence or sarcasm)
- U Seit To and Myauk Nyo (Cartoon characters : According to Saya U Tin Myint (M80), the nicknames are given to two sayas by G-Hall Thu)
- Myauk Phyu (White monkey)
- Ah Yan Kan (Random kicking footballer)
- Pathan Gyi (May be politically incorrect : reference to ethnicity)
- Chee Pay (May sound vulgar)
- Gwet Htaw (Fictional character)
- Tar Tay Gyi (Actor for scary movies)
Acronyms or Abbreviations
- TAG (Tun Aung Gyaw, EC69, UCC)
- HAK (Htun Aung Kyaw, EC73, UCC)
- KMZ (Khin Maung Zaw, EC76, UCC)
- KZ (Khin Zaw, UCC)
- KSM (Ko Soe Myint, UCC)
- KKK (K-cube, Khin Khin Kyu, UCC)
Po Htaung and Po Maung
Ko Khin Maung San (Tommy, BRS) give the nicknames to his sons.
Kyaw Gyi and Maw Gyi
Ko Kyi Win (EP69) is known as Kyaw Gyi.
Saya U Myat Htoo (C68) is known as Maw Gyi.
Ko Thein Swe (EP69) described nicknames (e.g. So Si) of the EE69ers in his post.
RIT English Sayas and Sayamas
Saya Des described some nicknames (e.g. Byaing Ma) in his article.
Dr. Soe Myint Win (GNBF) was called Dauk Soe by some of his students.
- Nyi Nyi may be used in a name (e.g. Dr. Nyi Nyi).
- Nyi Nyi and Pho Nyi are used as nicknames (e.g. Than Htut (M67, RUBC Gold)
- It may be used in a name (e.g. Sonny Yone Sein).
- It may also be used as a nickname (e.g. “Sonny” Aung Myint (UCC), “Sonny” Soe Naing (RIT, UCC, New York).
Lake or Leit
Ko Win Maung (EE69er) represented RIT in Rowing, Swimming and Water Polo. He is a Back Stroke specialist. He swam the 2000 meters Cross-Lake with Back Stroke. He is known as “Lake” or “Leit” (Tortoise in reference to his Back Stroke swimming). Ko Htay Aung (M59, Burma Selected) and several others using Front Crawl finish quite ahead of Leit. Before graduation, he went to UK for license & training in air craft maintenance. He joined UBA/BAC. He is now an entrepreneur doing family business.
Ko Sein Myint (K K Wong, EP69) represented RIT in Rowing, Swimming and Water Polo. Someone transformed his name “Kwet” into “Khwet”. He is a major donor of the 69er Health Care Fund and the EE69er HCF. After retirement, he spends time in Singapore, Yangon and California.
Ko Htin Kyaw (Peter Wun, MEHS63) worked for the Institute of Economics and UCC before joining HIC and FERD. He was called “Htaw Kyin”. Some British could not pronounce his name. They called him “Ha Htin Coil”.
Ko Kyaw Nyein (GBNF) taught Numerical Methods and Numerical Analysis at the UCC courses. He played soccer and volley ball. He was fondly called “Kyein”.
Ko Mya Thein (GBNF) taught at the Institute of Economics, UCC and IMBTU. He was originally called “Bogyoke” and later became known as “Bo Shoke”.
Ah Thay Lay
Ko Thein Oo taught at the Institute of Economics and UCC. His friends call me “Ah Thay Lay”. He was good at volleyball, table tennis and cards.
Ah Pho Gyee
Ko Tin Maung Thant (son of UNSG U Thant) was fondly called Ah Pho Gyee by his PPBRS classmates.
Ko Kyaw Zan Hein (C69, GBNF) was admitted to the 2nd BE in 1964 as Roll Number 14. There were no word processors in those days; only the use of cyclostyle (Gestener). So, when the person who was admitted as Roll Number 14 decided to join RASU and hopefully later pursue a doctorate in Pure Science, the Administrative Office typed in Shwee’s name instead. Some would call him Kyaw Zan Shwee.
Ngu Yin Kong Kee
- It is a Burmanized name of a Vietnamese General.
- Saya U Win Kyaing (GBNF) is the paternal uncle of Ko Maurice Chee (M75). Saya is often called Ngu Yin Kong Kee. He was also known as U Wah Kyaing, younger brother of U Wah Kyu.
Hna Khan Hmwe
- There are some who have notable mustache.
- One such person was Ko Khin Nyo, “Kyaung Tha Thadin Htauk (Student Reporter at RIT)”. According to Ko Zaw Min Nawaday (EP70), he met — several decades later — Ko Khin Nyi without mustache in New York, USA
Ko Hla Min (L T Gwan, SPHS64, EP70, GBNF) joined UCC as Chief Operator. He was called CO by his colleagues and “Pauk Si” by his close friends.
His father loaned money to a Pauk Si vendor, who did not pay back the loan. At break time at SPHS, Ko Hla Min would get Pauk Si from the vendor.
Ma Aye Aye Than (ChE72) is the sister of Sayama Dr. Hla Hla Sein (Maths) and Ma Myint Myint Sein (Diana, M70). Her friends called her Pauk Pauk.
Ko Myint Maung (EP69) is one of the youngest 69ers and one of the few remaining Eligible Bachelors. He represented RIT EE Department in Volleyball along with Saw Edison, Ko Aye Thein and Sa Maung Maung. He was fondly called “Bu” in reference to “Minbu” (his home town).
Ko Khin Maung Myint (C69, GBNF) is called Shastri (former Prime Minister of India).
Ko Ohn Thwin (PPFC, GBNF) attended classes at UCC and BARB. He is called “Ohn Thee” (Coconut) by his friends.
May Pa Le
- “May Pa Le” is a two-handed compliment given to selected female RIT students.
e.g. Daw Yee Yee Aung (EP67, EC member of RIT EE Association)
- It means Miss Pearl (a belle who is Pearly White).
- It’s concoction “Mae Pa Le” means “Wow. So dark [complexion]”.
Saya U Ko Gyi was a Lecturing Tutor in Mathematics. He is known for reciting the first 100 digits of PI (a constant which is 3.14159265 …). He used Rocket as an example in his classes.
For some reason, he named Ma Tin Tin Myint (Emma, ChE70) as “Rocket”. The classmates who witnessed the naming can provide details.
Emma Tin Tin Myint is co-founder of Triple Gems Publication
She is also co-founder of Dana Sri Lanka (DSL). She is called Mae Daw Gyi by the young monks studying in Sri Lanka.
La La is a form of “Kala” or “Kular” (Person of dark color).
Some young dark skinned kids (e.g. Aye Win Hlaing (Abel, EE72)) are given the nickname “La La”.
Ajala was a Nigerian student who led demonstrations in front of the US Embassy in Rangoon (in our younger days).
Moe Hein (ChE69) represented RIT in swimming and water polo. He has a loud voice (which is very helpful in supporting RIT athletes in the Inter-Institute Tournaments). He is fondly called Ajala by his close friends.
- Maung Kabar was an adorable Cartoon character.
- Those who have slightly round faces are called “Maung Kabar” or “Kabar”.
- According to Saya U Myat Htoo (C68), his classmate and fellow Saya U Myint Soe (SPHS64, C68) was named “Maung Kabar”.
- U Myint Thein (M69) is known as “Maung Kabar”, which shows up in his Obituary.
- Bagyi Aung is a fictional character from Min Thu Wun’s short story.
- U Hla Aung (EP68) wrote : May I share our time nick names. May Pa Le is Yee Yee Aung (EP67). Her friend is Nancy Hla Aung. My nick name is Ba Gyi Aung.
- In Mechanical Drawing, we learned about scales.
- One student gave the nicknames “Half size, Full size and Double size” to three female students.
- Two of them were Sayama Daw Mya Mya Than (EP68, “Full size”) and Daw Nyunt Nyunt Zaw (T68, “Double Size”, spouse of Victor Ohn Maung and brother of Ricky Zaw).
Sargalay and Lada
- Sargalay is a sparrow.
- Lada is a vulture
- Khin Maung Win (Sargalay, EP69) was the training partner for Sai Kham Pan (EP69, Burma Selected in Badminton). Kham Pan would give 10 – 12 points bonus to play a 15-point game.
- At a reunion, Daw Saw Yu Tint fondly addressed Khin Maung Win as Sargalay. He replied, “I am now a Lada”. He gained a lot of height from 2nd BE to Final Year.
- The nickname allows 69ers to differentiate KMW (Sargalay), KMW (Roland Thein), KMW (Donald Ba Pe) and KMW (ChE).
- Most 69ers might remember the cartoon by Kyant Ba Hone Aung Myint (Pet69).
“Ah Ba. Kar Ku La Thin Char (Calculus) is very fascinating.
If we differentiate a Lada, we get a Sargalay.
If we integrate a Sargalay, we get a Lada.”
- Kywei Gyi is a big, strong Buffalo.
- Ko Khin Maung Lay (Henry, T68) served as Secretary of the RIT Track and Field Association. He competed in 100 m, 200m, 4 x 100m relay and Long Jump (emulating Jesse Owens at the 1936 Berlin Olympics). He represented RIT in Track and Field, Soccer and Rowing. He is fondly called “Kywei Gyi” for his physical prowess. His elder brother Ko Khin Maung Latt (M63) represented the Faculty of Engineering in Rowing. His brothers-in-law include Saya Dr. Ba Lwin (EE59) and U Tin Myint (son of Arzani U Razak).
Ko Khin Maung Lay (M70) represented RIT in soccer. He served as emcee (Master of Ceremonies) at the Reunion and Acariya Pu Zaw Pwe of the Combined 1st BE Intake of 64 and 65. He is currently a member of the Myanmar Human Rights Commission. He is the younger son of U Khin Maung Latt (AFPFL Minister) and the brother of Saya U Khin Maung Gyi (English, GBNF).
Several alumni are called “Phone Gyi” (Monk) by their friends.
- Ko Tin Tun (SPHS63, M69) was my classmate since Std. IV(D) at SPHS. His mother Daw Tin Tin would come and feed him at lunch break.
He studied and taught Marine Engineering.
- Ko Tin Shein (M69) reminded me that we were class mates at the 2nd BE English class of Saya Des and that he gave a talk on Chinlon. He represented RIT in Chinlon.
- Ko Soe Myint (M72, GBNF) volunteered as a Kappiya at the Kaba Aye Sun Lun Gu Kyaung. He also helped with the maintenance. He retired as Pro-Rector of ICST.
- Some tall students are called Chauk Pay (Six Footer).
- Ko Htein Win (Richard, M70) represented RIT in Rowing, Swimming and Water Polo, where he tended the goal at the Shallow End. He moved to Canada. He bought the tickets for SPZP-2000, but could not attend it due to a strike.
Ja Bu and Shorty
- Some short students are called Ja Bu (Midget) or Shorty.
- Ko Myint Sein (M70, GBNF) represented in Soccer.
- There were two Bohmus named “Shorty” Tin Myint.
- Some who were born during the Japanese Occupation were given Japan Gyi as their nick name.
- Ko Hla Tun (T69, GBNF) would end most sentences with an expletive. He told me that he was married to Dolly Gale (my primary school classmate and sister of Robert Gale (Khin Maung Oo, EC66).
- Ko Tin Nwe (C69, GBNF) was a jovial person and was called Cowboy by his friends.
- Three Old Paulians — Ko Tin Nwe, Ko Min Thaw (Gilbert) and Ko Maung Maung Aye were involved in a car accident after an OPA dinner gathering, but they were not hurt seriously. Sadly, they are now all GBNF.
- Duwa is a title for a Kachin Leader.
- Ko Zau Lai (EP69) spends time in Myitkyina and Yangon. He is an entrepreneur and a Kachin Leader. He often drove a long way from Myitkyina to attend the 69er gatherings.
- Bei Oo is a “Duck Egg”. It may also stand for “Zero”.
- Ma Kyi Kyi Sein (T70) represented RIT in Badminton and Hiking. She is an organizer for the Combined 1st BE Intake of 64 and 65.
I know some people named Kyet Taw. They may have “Taw” in their names.
- Ko Harry Taw (MEHS57) was a friend of my older brother.
- Dr. Nyan Taw (Dicky, SPHS63) was my neighbor for some time. We jogged, biked and rowed. He worked at RASU, Pearl and Fishery before moving overseas for assignments (e.g. in Indonesia). He invited me to the wedding receptions of his younger son and daughter.
- Ko Khin Maung Lwin is an organizer for the Class of 87 and 91. RIT was closed for three years. He also organized the Golf Tournament for the alumni. He served as Secretary of the Swel Daw Yeik Foundation.
- Saya San is a revolutionary figure in the history of Burma.
- Saya [Ko] Maung San studied his Masters in the UK. He often shopped in the “Junior” section. He taught Geology at RIT and ABAC.
- I met Ko Aung Than (Saya San) at a meeting for the Combined 1st BE Intake of 64 and 65. He told me that he had to study for the last ever 7th Standard Government examination.
- The Burmese sometimes pronounce “Kyaw” as “Gyaw”; “Kyee” as “Gyee” and “Khine” as “Gaing”.
- Ko Ohn Khine (M70) was named Ohn Gaing at St. Peter’s High School in Mandalay. He was called “Gaing Gyi” by some friends. He is the founder and moderator of the Google Group for the intake of 64 and 65. He volunteered for SPZP-2012, Shwe YaDu, SPZP-2016, SDYF, HMEE-2012 and HMEE-2016. He translated Section 1 and summarized Section 2 of the HMEE-2012 book. He and I compiled the CD supplement for the HMEE-2012 book.
Byte and R
- Byte may mean stomach or belly.
- R may mean “talkative”.
- Saya Dr. Tin Hlaing (M63) was called “Byte Tin Hlaing” and “R Tin Hlaing” by his friends to differentiate from the senior Saya U Tin Hlaing (M59, GBNF).
- Ko Kyaw Zin (EP69) was called “R Zin” by some of his friends.
- Ko Myint Soe (UCC) worked as Maintenance Technician in the Systems Division. He was called “Byte”.
Shwe Gaung Byaung
It is the name of a cartoon character. It literally means “Golden, Bald Head”. Toe Nyunt (Ted Mya Maung) starred in a movie of that name.
Ko Wynn Htain Oo (M72) is a super fund raiser is fondly known as “Shwe Gaung Byaung”. He is known as
- WHO (not World Health Organization)
- Shwe Gaung Byaung
- Hmaw Sayagyi
- Sa Yay may mean a Clerk.
- Sa Yay Gyi is a Senior Clerk.
- Saya Lay is a Junior Clerk.
- Ko Khin Maung Zaw (EC76) was called “Sa Yay Lay” by his teacher Perrera (V Standard in St. Paul’s High School).
- In primary school, my spouse was told by her teacher that her hand writing looked like that of a “Sa Yay”. It motivated her to become a medical doctor.
- It is an Indian Diety.
- Ko Han Tun Maung (GBNF) was a star athlete at SPHS. He excelled in Track and Field, and Soccer. He was fondly called “Hanuman”. He served as President of Old Paulians Association, Kokkine Swimming Club, Equestrian and Archery Associations. His family owned a Stable with “Sein Hlyan” as a Champion horse. The family opened Sein Hlyan Cafe. The Intake of 65 meets monthly as the Cafe.
- It may mean “Beard”.
- Myo Hein (69er) is fondly called Mote Seit by his friends.
- Reverend Frederich Ludwig (Buddhist Arch Bishop of Latvia and Lithuania) was fondly called “Moke Seit Phone Gyi”. He later shaved his beard and ordained as a Theravada monk with the title Ashin Ananda. He is a Laureate Poet.
According to Dr. Tint Lwin (Goalkeeper of the Rangoon University Soccer Team), Collegian Nay Win was fondly called Papu by his coach and team mates.
Pen Names and Stage Names
- Maung Ngwe Hlinne is the pen name of Saya U Thet Lwin (Registrar).
- Tekaktho Moe War is the pen name of Saya U Moe Aung (EE63).
- Kogyi Kaung is the pen name of Saya Dr. Koung Nyunt (A67, GBNF).
- Yin Maung is the pen name of Saya Dr. Taing Oke (ChE69).
- Chi Hte Nu Nu Kyaw is the pen name of Ko Kyaw Htin (T69).
- Mon Yu is the pen name of Ko Tin Htut (Harry, M69).
- Maung Hmut is the pen name of Ko Khin Maung Aye (M69).
- Maubin Ma Shwe Than is the pen name of Ma Than Yi (EP70).
- Zin Yaw is the pen name of Ko Zaw Win (Min71).
- Seik Kyee is the stage name of Ko Myint Pe (M72).
- Okkpo Maung Yin Maung is the pen name of Saya U Aung Myaing (ChE72).
- Ba Thein (Atlanta) is the pen name of Dr. Myint Thein (M73).
- Maung Yit is the pen name of Ko Maung Maung Win (EC93).
- Tet Lu is the stage name of Ko Myint San (Pattala, Lu Shwin Daw).
- Ba Kyaw is the stage name of Ko Aung Kyaw Myint (Lu Shwin Daw)