Vietnam – Germany Enhances Education Cooperation
Assessing the achievements of close cooperation between Vietnam and the Federal Republic of Germany in the field of higher education, Dr. Kambiz Ghawami, President of the World University Service of Germany, affirmed that cooperation between Germany and Vietnam has a very long tradition and has developed very actively in many decades. Since the 1950s, many Vietnamese have studied and been trained in both East Germany and West Germany. Some alumni later held leadership positions in Vietnam and many others, after graduating from university in Germany, have put their knowledge to good use in many other fields in Vietnam, acting as a bridge to connect the two countries.
Over the past 10 years, the number of Vietnamese international students in Germany has increased from 2,717 students to 7,600 students (who are holding Vietnamese passports). In addition, there are thousands of other Vietnamese students with German passports who are not counted. Besides, there are nearly 3,000 students at the Vietnamese-German University (VGU) in Ho Chi Minh City.
|Dr. Kambiz Ghawami, President of the World University Service of Germany. (Photo: VNA)
On the contrary, the number of German students studying abroad in Vietnam is still limited, less than 50 students/year, so more information and incentives are needed to make Vietnam an attractive study abroad destination. A positive advantage is that VGU regularly accepts German students from VGU's partner universities in Vietnam, as part of the Joint Second Degree Training Program. These joint training programs are key to increasing the number of German students at Vietnamese universities, for students having the opportunity to learn about Vietnamese people and culture.
VGU University, established in 2008, is a model that makes an important contribution to the process of modernizing universities in Vietnam and thereby making Vietnam one of the countries with international competitiveness and affirming its position on the world scientific arena.
As a signatory member of the declaration to establish the Vietnamese-German University in 2008, being the German Foreign Minister at that time, Mr. Steinmeier called this a future-oriented cooperative project with a purpose of helping the younger generation to pay attention to Vietnam – Germany bilateral relations.
According to Dr. Kambiz Ghawami, in this sense, cooperation between Germany and Vietnam is like a "lighthouse project," promoting global cooperation instead of acting alone. Since its establishment, VGU has always aimed to become the leading research university in Southeast Asia. VGU acts as a special bridge to connect Vietnam and Germany in terms of research cooperation. Currently, VGU and partner universities are conducting joint research projects of national, regional and global importance.
Referring to the prospects of Vietnam - Germany cooperation in the field of education in the coming time and areas where Germany has strengths, Dr. Kambiz Ghawami said that the upcoming state visit of German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will further strengthen the general cooperation between both sides, as well as in the field of education. Germany and Vietnam have much in common, having enhanced and expanded education for centuries.
Therefore, Dr. Ghawami believed that the two countries need to invest more in education cooperation, because education is a key factor for national prosperity. If the strengths of the two countries are creatively combined and each contributes its strengths in education, research and innovation, both sides will benefit.
Dr. Ghawami further emphasized that Germany is famous for its technology and Vietnam is famous for its creativity. The combination of these two strengths will create the difference between Vietnam and Germany.
At the invitation of President Vo Van Thuong and his spouse, President of the Federal Republic of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his spouse Elke Büdenbender will pay a state visit to Vietnam on January 23 - 24.
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