Tham gia dự án xã hội rất cần thiết cho những em đang chuẩn bị đi du học.
Tiếng Việt, đọc tại đây.
As I gathered data for the Share A Cause Project, I was fortunate enough to meet chị Phượng — co-founder of APUS Vietnam. After finishing her Master degree in Public Affairs (MPA) at one of the top universities in the U.S, chị Phượng continues to pursuit her career in both academia and connecting ex-U.S-abroaders (people who studied abroad), who wish to consult younger generation of Vietnamese who also intend to come to the U.S for studying before coming back to the homeland to contribute.
One of the two educational projects which chị Phượng and partners in APUS have carried out to assist young Vietnamese maximizing their potential as well as seizing the opportunities to grow in an international environment, is the offer of APUS Dream 2018 - Chắp cánh Ước mơ Việt and Học bổng Trí Việt 2018- Ươm mầm Tài năng Việt (scholarships for the young talented Vietnamese students who seek for help with preparation for their study abroad, or have a heart for social impact projects).
Those who applied for Ripple would also be considered for these two scholarships. 🎉
Here's a very interesting and informative talk I hope to share with you!
(Side notes: In Vietnam, we use “chị” to address women that are older than we are, or as a polite way to manifest respect towards that person. Similarly, people use“em” in Vietnamese to address younger ones.)
Hello chị Phượng!
- Hi em!
Thank you for spending your time with us. Could you share with me, why did you decided to establish APUS?
- As a former study abroader who is now working in the U.S, I have loads of chances to meet up with young people. I found that the majority of them haven’t acknowledged the importance of knowledge and skill sets preparation before hopping on board. For these reasons, the experience of studying abroad doesn’t bring much values as expected. APUS was founded to connect successful ex-abroaders to young people, helping them developing studying abroad plan that is suitable to their abilities, objectives as well as future path.
I do know that apart from APUS, you also are the Head of External Relations Department of Vietnam Student Association in the U.S (Hội Thanh Niên Sinh Viên Việt Nam tại Mỹ) , where you could interact with many young people who dream to study in the U.S. Furthermore, you are an enthusiastic and active member of many Vietnamese communities in the U.S. As a mother of two, along with a personal and professional life, what have encouraged you to fulfill all of these positions?
- I resonated with a TED talk speaker saying that, ”Happiness is not the goal, the real goal is when a person found out their meaning in life”. I then asked myself what would bring meaning to my life. Luckily, I came to realize I could only live fully (and happily) when I participated in communal projects, especially those which created opportunities for young people to develop themselves.
- Following this “mantra”, my partners and I have carried out many meaningful projects such as APUS Dream 2018 — Making Viet Dreams Come True and Viet Mind Scholarship 2018 — Growing Viet Talent,…, at the same time support communal projects such as Ripple. Through these activities, I hope to encourage young Vietnamese to dream and get all the support to turn their dreams into realities.
Could you tell me more about APUS?
- APUS is an organization of young Vietnamese talents who are studying and working in the U.S. APUS specializes in consulting — helping people maximizing their applications for secondary, undergraduate and graduate programs of the highest-ranked institutions in the US, assisting them to get admitted into the most suitable institutions, with scholarships. Those who are interested, could follow APUS at: www.apusvietnam.com or https://www.facebook.com/APUSVietnam/.
As I learnt about APUS, I got the know that 100% students of APUS got admitted into very high-ranked universities in the U.S. What is that secret sauce?
Many students and parents have shared that APUS’s programs were very pragmatic as well as systematic for it were built based on the real-life experiences in living, studying and working in the U.S of excellent ex-abroaders. I personally think the success belongs to APUS as a collective of people who never stop building a holistic, systematic, realistic and clairvoyant, customized for each student to maximize their potential while studying, so that they can use it as a leverage to boost their future career.
Among the scholarships offered by APUS this year, APUS Dream 2018- Chắp cánh Ước mơ Việt aims to nurture and encourage the young Vietnamese’s dream and hope to serve their communities. APUS would provide either full or partial funding for 3 impactful social projects. Why would APUS want to encourage them to participate in social innitiatives?
- From my interactions with the young people both in Vietnam and the U.S, I realized that who knew how to balance their study and participation in extracurricular activities to develop social skills had more advantage to advance in life.
Your education goes well beyond your coursework. By joining in social impact projects, they would be able to try out different fields, experiment new ideas, discover their own strengths, get trained on important skills, open their eyes to new knowledge, and expand their network. Thus, they are equipped to set solid life goals, as well as improve their career and personal development.
- Importantly, those who wish to apply for high-ranked schools in the U.S should start to participate in social initiatives and extracurricular activities. A lot of U.S schools review the applications in a holistic view approach (not only do they look at academic achievements but also other aspects of applicants). They always appreciate students who not only excel academically but also capable in nurturing a personal point of view, and set of values reflected in social activities of which the students are parts.
Right, I get it now. One of my research findings was that senior secondary students didn’t receive much encouragement from their families when participating in social activities, for their families wanted them to focus on the academic performances. I hope parents would soon alter their point of view reading this article.
Last question (chuckle), why did you and APUS decide to partner with Ripple?
- I met you— one of those who run Ripple this year and realized the sparks and passion to contribute from you. The idea of the program reminds me of an incubator where communal projects led by students are nurtured and supported. If this could spread out, Ripple would help young people gain valuable knowledge and experience, as well as sharpen their skills as the projects are carried out. For that, I decided to join hand with the hope to spread out the projects to more people, and assist those with the same vision as Ripple’s — growing this “incubator” and bring better values to the community.
Thank you chị Phượng so much for your kind words and for sharing with us your stories, hopes and that of APUS. They are extremely informative and insightful to the students, especially those who are interested in studying abroad. I hope with this collaboration, RIPPLE would be a successful program, opening doors and opportunities for students!
This is Share A Cause Project blog series. Share A Cause Project is a social campaign that explores what could give the student volunteer community in Vietnam opportunities to grow, innovate, pursue their ideas for good cause and create more impactful outcomes.
How you can be part of this exciting campaign
Since this campaign aims to build awareness and inspire actions, I invite you to share it to your communities and those interested in this matter ;) You can also follow my Instagram account @angie_ngoctran or hashtag #ShareACause🇻🇳 for more field notes.