Summer 2017 VietAbroader Study Abroad Camp (VASAC) in HCMC & Hanoi

Dear Friends & Colleagues,

I’m pleased to share with you information about the summer 2017 VietAbroader Study Abroad Camps (VASAC) in mid-July.  These events are different than in years past because they will last for four (4) days instead of one (1).

For those of you who don’t about VietAbroader (VA), whose slogan is Empower Vietnamese Youth, it is the premier student-run organization in Viet Nam that helps young people who want to study overseas, in particular in the US.  I’m honored to have served as a VA adviser almost since the very beginning in 2004.  It started out as online forum and then expanded by offering events such as the VASAC, which was first organized in 2005.  (I was a speaker at the Hanoi conference.)

There are two ways in which you can participate in the VASAC:

1)  Institutional sponsorship: Please follow these links to download the institutional sponsor proposal and the institutional sponsor benefit package.

2)  Participation in the Education Fairs, which are free and open to the public.  This is free of charge and you can have a currently enrolled student who’s home for the summer, or an alum, represent you at the fair(s), if you’re not able to travel to Viet Nam.

If you’re interested in becoming an institutional sponsor and/or participating in the public fair(s), please contact one of the VA representatives listed on the last page of the sponsor proposal.
Help VietAbroader Pass the Torch and Empower Vietnamese Youth!
MAA
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Capstone Vietnam is 2015 VietAbroader Conference Event Sponsor

My employer, Capstone Vietnam is the event sponsor of the 2015 VietAbroader Conferences, which will be held – for the first time ever – in seven (7) cities representing all three regions of Vietnam.  These include Can Tho, Danang, Haiphong, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), Hue and Nghe An.

vac 2015While VietAbroader (VA), Vietnam’s premier student-run organization focusing on overseas study and study in the USA, in particular, celebrated its 10th anniversary last year, this summer is the 10th year that VA has organized study abroad conferences that offer a select group of students and parents the opportunity to learn more about study in the US from the best sources of information, current students, alumni and US higher education colleagues, and then attend afternoon US higher education fairs that are free and open to the public.

Capstone Vietnam will send staff to events in all seven (7) cities this month.  We’re grateful for the opportunity to support one of Vietnam’s top student organizations doing great work in the field of international educational exchange and are excited about the chance to meet students and parents from all over the country who are interested in StudyUSA.

empower vietnamese youthI’ve been a strong supporter of VietAbroader since its founding in 2004, and have served as a adviser ever since.  I’m proud of VietAbroader’s movers and shakers, including those who have long since graduated and become successful entrepreneurs and exemplary role models in a variety of fields here in Vietnam and elsewhere.

MAA

The 10th VietAbroader Study Abroad Conferences Are Coming!

sac11-1024x683 (2015)Mark your summer calendar, U.S. higher education colleagues!  I’m pleased to announce that the main 2015 VietAbroader Conferences – Passing of the Torch will be held on Saturday, July 18th in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) and Sunday, July 19th in Hanoi.

For the first time ever, there will also be conferences in Hue (7/10), Haiphong and Can Tho (7/11), Nghe An and Danang (7/12). With this change VietAbroader demonstrates its commitment to reaching out to underserved communities, educating aspiring young people across Vietnam about U.S. study opportunities and providing them with accurate information and tools with which to make the best decisions for their future. This change will also enable U.S. institutions and schools reach out to a wider and more diverse pool of Vietnamese applicants in the coming years.

Other new features include the following:

  • Interactive Format: Guest speakers will share inspiring stories from applying to U.S. colleges to overcoming challenges abroad.
  • Comprehensive Information: Participants will be given handbooks with accurate, updated information on U.S. college admissions.

There are five (5) institutional sponsorship packages, including Diamond (5k), Platinum (4k), Gold (3k), Silver (2k) and Bronze (1k). (These costs are for Hanoi and HCMC only.) There is currently one Platinum slot left and the Gold, Silver and Bronze slots are wide open.  The registration deadline is May 15, 2015.

vac 2015Follow this link to download both sponsorship documents: Benefits Information for Institutional Sponsors and the Conference Proposal. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Ms. Thu Pham (anhthu.pham [AT] vietabroader.org), Co-President, or Ms. Thu Diem, Head of Partners & Sponsors, (anhthu.diem [AT] vietabroader.org).

The conferences include morning seminars that provide pre-screened attendees and their parents with information about U.S. education and fairs in the afternoon that are free and open to the public, where students and parents can meet face-to-face with currently enrolled students, alumni and official representatives of more than 100 U.S. institutions. Here is the tentative agenda (as of March 2015):

  • 08:00 –08:40    Check-in
  • 08:45–09:10     Opening Ceremony & Keynote Speech
  • 09:10 –09:30    Presentation: Why Study in the U.S.?
  • 09:30 –10:00    Experience Sharing: Opportunities & Challenges in the U.S.
  • 10:00 –10:30    Experience Sharing: Pursuing Your Dreams
  • 10:30 –10:45    Break
  • 10:45 –11:30    Discussion in Small groups
  • 11:30 –11:45    School Quizzes
  • 11:45 –12:00    Closing Ceremony
  • 12:00 –14:00    Lunch Break & Networking
  • 14:00 –17:00    College Fair with Representatives from Over 100 U.S. Institutions

What is VietAbroader (VA)?

mark-and-mike
Then US Ambassador to Vietnam, Michael Michalak, and I after delivering introductory remarks at the 2009 VAC in Hanoi.

VA is Vietnam’s premier student-run nonprofit that provides students with information and guidance to encourage them to study abroad, primarily in the United States. The VA Study Abroad Conference (VAC), the organization’s flagship program, was launched in 2005. I had the honor of speaking at the first Hanoi conference. It is also my honor to serve as one of four VietAbroader advisers, a position I have held since the organization’s founding 11 years ago. When I joined the VA forum in 2004, before it evolved into a full-fledged student organization, there were only a few hundred members. There were over 80,000 when the forum was phased out last August in favor of Facebook and a more interactive website.

Every year, it is my pleasure to help VA’s leadership reach out to potential institutional sponsors. Why should U.S. colleges and universities that welcome Vietnamese students to their campuses consider becoming a VAC sponsor? Because it’s one of the most popular and widely publicized events of its kind, and will help you brand and market your school to a large and targeted audience.  Capstone Vietnam, of which I’m managing director, is a corporate sponsor of the VACs and a long-term VietAbroader partner, along with IDG Ventures Vietnam and EducationUSA.

MAA

Happy 10th Anniversary, VietAbroader!/Chúc mừng VietAbroader nhân kỷ niệm 10 năm thành lập!

Va portraits

Below is a brief message of congratulations that I shared with VietAbroader (VA), Vietnam’s premier student-run non-profit organization, whose mission is to empower Vietnamese youth to contribute to the sustainable development of Vietnam.  I attended VA’s Gala Night 2014 on 3 August in Hanoi.

Happy 10th Anniversary, VietAbroader!

Congratulations to VietAbroader on 10 years of Empowering Vietnamese Youth!  10 years of innovation, adaptation, dedication, and service.  10 years of opening doors, expanding circles of friends and pushing the boundaries.  The founders’ vision and much more have become reality.  I am proud and honored to have witnessed VietAbroader’s genesis, growth and expansion since the early days. It has been my pleasure to spread the good word about VA far and wide, including among U.S. higher education colleagues and students here in Vietnam.  Wishing VietAbroader great success in the next 10 years and beyond!

Mark A. Ashwill, VA Adviser & Managing Director, Capstone Vietnam

 Chúc mừng VietAbroader nhân kỷ niệm 10 năm thành lập!

Dưới đây là lời chúc của tôi gửi tới VietAboarder, tổ chức phi lợi nhuận do sinh viên điều hành và quản lý với sứ mệnh truyền lửa cho Tuổi trẻ Việt Nam nhằm góp phần cho sự phát triển bền vững của Đất nước. Tôi đã tham dự Đêm Gala 2014 do VietAbroader tổ chức vào ngày 3 tháng 8 tại Hà Nội.

​“Chúc mừng VietAbroader nhân kỷ niệm 10 năm thành lập và cống hiến cho sự nghiệp truyền lửa cho giới trẻ Việt nam!

10 năm đổi mới, thích nghi, cống hiến và phục vụ. 10 năm mở cửa, kết nối tình bằng hữu và thu hẹp các danh giới. Tầm nhìn của những sáng lập viên và nhiều điều hơn thế nữa đã trở thành hiện thực. Tôi rất vinh dự và tự hào được chứng kiến các thế hệ của VietAbroader trưởng thành và ngày càng lớn mạnh ngay từ những ngày đầu thành lập. Tôi rất lấy làm hân hạnh được bày tỏ sự khen ngợi VietAbroader tới đông đảo các đồng nghiệp trong lĩnh vực Giáo dục Đại học tại Hoa Kỳ và tới các sinh viên tại Việt nam. Tôi xin chúc VietAbroader gặt hái thêm nhiều thành công trong 10 năm tới và xa hơn thế nữa.

Tiến sĩ Mark A. Ashwill, Cố vấn cao cấp của VietAbroader, Giám đốc Điều hành Công ty Capstone Vietnam

 

2014 VietAbroader Summer Study Abroad Conferences

Below is a note I sent to US higher education colleagues about the summer VietAbroader Study Abroad Conferences.

MAA

vac 2014

I’m pleased to announce that the 2014 VietAbroader Conferences – Passing of the Torch will be held on Saturday, July 19th in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) and Sunday, July 20th in Hanoi.  Follow this link to download both sponsorship documentsBenefits Information for Institutional Sponsors and the conference proposal.  You can register here to become an institutional sponsor.

Although the registration deadline is May 9th, the Diamond, Platinum, and Gold sponsorship levels tend to fill up quickly, so if you’re interested in becoming a sponsor, register ASAP.  Thank you for giving some thought to sponsoring this unique, high-profile event.

The conferences include morning seminars that provide pre-screened attendees and their parents with information about U.S. education and fairs in the afternoon that are free and open to the public, where students and parents can meet face-to-face with students, alumni and official representatives of more than 80 top U.S. schools.  Here is the tentative agenda:

08:40-09:20 Opening Ceremony & Keynote Speech
09:25-09:40 Overview of U.S.Education
09:45-10:00 Mini Talk Show on College Life
10:05-10:45 Scholarship Opportunities and School Selection
11:20-11:35 Q & A
11:40-12:10 Standardized Examinations
12:15-13:00 High School Admission & Scholarship Opportunities
13:00-14:00 Lunch Break & Networking
14:00-17:00 College Fair Featuring Representatives from 80 U.S. Institutions
Community College Admission
17:00-18:00 Networking

What is VietAbroader (VA)? 

VA picVA is Vietnam’s premier student-run nonprofit, which provides students with information and guidance to encourage them to study abroad, primarily in the United States.  The VA Study Abroad Conference (VAC), the organization’s flagship program, was launched in 2005.  I had the honor of speaking at the first Hanoi conference.  It is also my honor to serve as one of two VietAbroader advisers, a position I have held since the organization’s founding 10 years ago.  When I joined the VA forum in 2004, the year of its founding and before it evolved into a full-fledged student organization, there only a few hundred members.  There are now over 80,000.

Every year, I help VA’s leadership reach out to potential institutional sponsors.  Why should U.S. colleges and universities that welcome Vietnamese students to their campuses consider becoming a VAC sponsor?  Because it’s one of the hottest and most widely publicized events of its kind, and will help you brand and market your school to a very targeted audience.

MAA

2013 VACs: A-w-e-s-o-m-e! :-)

Below is a note I sent to key participants in the recent VietAbroader Study Abroad Conferences (VACs) in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) and Hanoi.

View from the Stage (HN)Dear VietAbroaders,

I just wanted to drop you a line to congratulate you on organizing two fabulously successful VACs.  I had the opportunity to attend both events and was impressed by the quality, professionalism and, of course, the turnout.

I remember in the early days when VA was an online forum with just a few hundred members.  (I joined in March 2004.)  There are  now over 65,000 members and VA is the premier Vietnamese student organization.  It has, in nine (9) short years, with the contributions of the co-founders, Khoa and Trang, and everyone who has followed in their footsteps, including all of you, become a brand in overseas study and, specifically, study in the USA.

IMG_1616I have never tired of sharing the “gospel of VA” with my US higher ed colleagues and, during my IIE-Vietnam days (i.e., 2005-09), with IIE and US Mission colleagues, who had never heard of it.

Thank you for your hard work, dedication and passion for giving back and making a difference in the lives of young people here.

What’s on the horizon for VA?

All my best,

MAA, VA Adviser

P.S.:  Below are photos (thanks, Khoa) of team members from the very first VACs in July 2005.  I spoke at the Hanoi VAC.  A trip down memory lane…

Hanoi VAC volunteers
Hanoi VAC Team
HCMC VAC Team
HCMC VAC Team

60,000 Members & Counting!

VA logo

No, I’ m not referring to the number of subscribers to my humble blog but to members of VietAbroader (VA), a student-run, non-profit organization that empowers Vietnamese youth to contribute to the sustainable development of Vietnam.  It was founded by a small group of Vietnamese students studying in the US at the time.  Congratulations to them and the many young leaders they have inspired, who have transformed VA from an online forum to Vietnam’s most famous and highly respected student organization. 

In addition to the online forum, VietAbroader is known for its annual summer study abroad conferences, VApedia, a wikipedia of information, advice and guidance covering admission, financial aid, life abroad, visas, and the VietAbroader Club, which initiates workshops and projects that help other high school students develop critical skills and make meaningful contributions to their local community.

According to SimilarWeb, which measures and analyzes web traffic, VA ranked 582,356 worldwide and 7,223 in Vietnam last month.  Those statistics are wildly impressive when you consider that there over 600 million websites in the world and that Vietnam has an Internet penetration rate of about 35%.     

Disclosure:  I am proud to be one of two VietAbroader advisers, a position I have held almost since the organization’s founding.  My company, Capstone Vietnam, has been a proud corporate sponsor of the VA’s summer study abroad conference the last few years. 

MAA