NUS strengthens partnership with universities in Vietnam

NUS has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Vietnam National University-Ho Chi Minh City (VNU-HCMC), Vin University (VinUni) and Hanoi University of Science and Technology (HUST) respectively, deepening its continued cooperation with the higher education sector in Vietnam to promote joint research, as well as greater collaboration in teaching, innovation and enterprise.

The agreements were inked by NUS Deputy President (Academic Affairs) and Provost Professor Aaron Thean during his visit to Vietnam from 23 to 26 January 2024. He was accompanied by Professor Susanna Leong, NUS Vice Provost (Masters’ Programmes & Lifelong Education) and Dean of the NUS School of Continuing and Lifelong Education; Professor Jessica Pan, Dean of NUS Graduate School; and Associate Professor Vu Minh Khuong from the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at NUS.

The new partnership between VNU-HCMC and NUS aims to provide pathways for VNU-HCMC students who have completed the first three years of their Bachelor’s programmes, to pursue their Master’s degrees at NUS. Those who demonstrate academic excellence will receive a scholarship to pursue a four-year doctoral programme at NUS, completing the entire academic journey in eight years.

While in Ho Chi Minh City, the NUS delegation also met senior representatives of Becamex IDC, a partner of BLOCK71 Saigon. A leading industrial park and township developer in Vietnam, Becamex is an investor in the transformation of the Binh Duong province into innovation districts. The company is also a pioneer in providing prototyping and pilot manufacturing facilities at the Advanced Manufacturing Centre located in Binh Duong in a move to support early-stage start-ups.

Additionally, the NUS delegation visited BLOCK71 Saigon where they had the opportunity to meet Mr Binh Tran, co-founder and general partner of Ascend Vietnam Ventures, who shared about the accessibility and scalability of the Vietnamese market. This was followed by a roundtable with the co-founders of BLOCK71 Saigon start-ups such as Forte Biotech, SoBanHang, Alterno and Holistics Data.

In Hanoi, VinUni and NUS inked an MOU for both universities to jointly expand learning opportunities for talented students through new academic pathways, engage in interdisciplinary research, particularly in the areas of smart cities and solutions for community health, as well as explore opportunities to exchange scientific and academic knowledge. The MOU was signed by Professor Aaron Thean and Provost of VinUni, Professor David Bangsberg.

The NUS delegation and VinUni representatives also discussed offering an integrated Bachelor-Master-PhD programme. The eight-year programme will be jointly taught by faculty members from both universities, in Singapore and Vietnam respectively. Graduates will be conferred a joint degree by NUS and VinUni.

Looking to nurture their young lecturers and talented students, Hanoi University of Science and Technology (HUST) will work with NUS to develop a programme for faculty members from both universities to collaborate on more joint projects and to co-supervise PhD students. The MOU was signed by Professor Aaron Thean and Vice President of HUST, Professor Huynh Dang Chinh.

In conjunction with the Vietnam trip, the NUS delegation also reconnected with NUS alumni, with representation from the Classes of 1993 to 2024. This first-ever alumni event in the country was held over dinners in both Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.