Talented students lack mentors: university

VietNamNet Bridge - Dr Do Quang Yen, a lecturer at the University of Virginia, who won one gold and one silver medal at the 1998 and 1999 International Mathematics Olympiads, says Vietnam lacks professors and leading experts who can develop talented students.


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Vietnamese often win high prizes at international competitions, but the country's scientific research achievements remain modest. 

Yen believes that Vietnamese students have good qualities and the country has good teachers at general schools. But he said Vietnam lacks leading professors and specialists involved in key areas of science and technology.

“Vietnamese students need to work with such specialists to have opportunities to develop their talents and scientific work,” he said. 

Asked why Vietnam lacks good teachers, Yen believes that science in Vietnam doesn’t receive appropriate attention and investment from the state. 

Vietnam needs to invite the world’s leading experts to work in Vietnam and give training to students, for which they to be well awarded. The country also needs to create a policy to allow Vietnamese scientists to receive a higher income than average, allowing young talents to spend their time on research instead of taking extra work to earn a living.

Vietnam needs to invite the world’s leading experts to work in Vietnam and give training to students, for which they to be well awarded. The country also needs to create a policy to allow Vietnamese scientists to receive a higher income than average, allowing young talents to spend their time on research instead of taking extra work to earn a living.

In developed countries, though scientists are not rich, they can earn enough for them and their families to live.

In Vietnam, a young PhD may receive monthly pay which is even lower than pay to housemaid or a manual worker who has worked a long time. 

Yen believes that the state needs to abolish the pay policy based on service length, saying that workers need to be paid based on their contributions, not the length of their work service.

Most Vietnamese young talents study abroad and work overseas instead of returning to Vietnam. Some return to Vietnam after finishing school but they later leave because they find it difficult to live and work in the local working environment.

Two years ago, the public was stirred up by the story of Dr Doan Minh Dang, a talented teacher at Can Tho University of Technology. The young lecturer was punished by his school after he frankly criticised negative aspects about his school on Facebook. 

He was disciplined for ‘violating the Article No 19 of the Civil Servant Law – offending the honor, dignity and reputation of another person while performing professional activities’.

The story of Doan Minh Dang shows one of the reasons why talented students think that they can choose another way rather than come back to work in Vietnam.


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Mai Chi

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