Recently a representative from each of the University’s four Schools visited Vietnam to establish and develop links with HE institutions throughout the country. Aston currently has 63 Vietnamese students enrolled for 2009/10 and is keen to develop more collaborative programme delivery in Vietnam. At the invitation of the British Council, the four set off for Vietnam. Prof Gina Rippon (LHS), Dr Beverly Adab (LSS), Dr Trevor Oliver (EAS) and Prof David Bennett (ABS) enjoyed a packed trip, visiting 36 institutions in five days!
With a population of over 86 million, Vietnam is the 13th most populated country in the world. Over the next few years It is heavily investing in Higher Education with a plan to set up a new university system to cater for <1 million Vietnamese graduates per year.
Vietnam currently has 120 state universities and 40 private ones, plus colleges offering HE provision. HE is heavily subsidised, and undergraduate students pay the equivalent of around £100 per year in fees for local programmes. The Vietnam government’s aim is to develop more research-led universities and more ‘practical’ universities and for the quality of research to match international levels.
The training of 20,000 PhD students is also planned to increase Vietnam’s professional capacity, with 1,000 PhD students studying in UK. There is strong encouragement for Vietnamese universities to develop links with international partners for research and to provide English language training for staff and students. These priorities offer huge opportunities for Aston University and our representatives went to find out more and establish links with key institutions.
Prof Gina Rippon met with the Hanoi School of Public Health, Ministry of Health, University of Social Sciences and Humanities (VNU), Centre for Women Development, Hanoi University of Medicine, Hanoi University of Pharmacy, Pham Ngoc Thach Medicine University and the HCMC University of Medicine and Pharmacy.
Prof David Bennett visited the Foreign Trade University, Centre Francaise Vietnamien a la Gestion, Hanoi School of Business (VNU), National University of Economics, Centre for Women Development, College of Economics (VNU), International School (VNU), University of Finance & Marketing and School of Economics (VNU).
Dr Beverly Adab met Hanoi University, University of Languages and International Studies (VNU), University of Social Sciences and Humanities (VNU), Centre for Women Development, Hanoi National University of Education, University of Social Sciences and Humanities (VNU HCMC), HCMC University of Pedagogy, HCMC University of Foreign Language and Information Technology and the University of Medicine & Pharmacy (VNU).
Dr Trevor Oliver visited Electricity Power University, University of Transport, College of Technology (VNU), FPT University, Hanoi University of Science (VNU), Centre for Women Development, Hanoi University of Technology, Hanoi University of Industry, HCMC University of Technology (VNU), HCMC University of Science (VNU), HCMC University of Technical Education and HCMC University of Industry.
Each School has a scholarship available to offer one Vietnamese postgraduate student and the Schools are currently looking at the best use of these. Many of the institutions visited have expressed an interest in collaboration and developing Memoranda of Understanding with Aston University. Over the next few weeks and months the Schools will be exploring possibilities. Already we have arranged a visit from the Rector of VNU University of Social Sciences and Humanities in January to sign a Memorandum of Understanding. Watch this space for more!
If you want to find out more about any of the visits please contact the appropriate representative from your School.
Words by Louise Russell
HCMC: Ho Chi Minh City
VNU: Vietnam National University