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VinUniversity's official student blog, for students, by students.

We could have another Van Anh.

Having spent the second half of her junior year in Sydney, far away from her hometown in Hung Yen province and completely unimaginable even in her wildest dreams, Van Anh has come extremely far.

Trust me when I say almost everyone knows Van Anh. Cheerful, courageous, and resilient, from day one, Van Anh has been a breath of fresh air, helping to dismantle VinUni’s status as an elite university for the cream of the crop. In reality, she identified with none of that.

Having spent the second half of her junior year in Sydney, far away from her hometown in Hung Yen province and completely unimaginable even in her wildest dreams, Van Anh has come extremely far.

Van Anh before VinUni? A very cute version, indeed.

According to Van Anh, Junior High was the most significant phase of her life, nurturing and cementing her personality and work ethic that lasted through her adulthood. From managing her aggressiveness and selfishness to reconnect with friends to helping her family with farming, her life reminded me of Melinda’s in Brave, except for the red hair because Van Anh admitted being more traditional than one might think. She also failed more than a typical princess, screwing every possible competition or exam from the city-level to province-level. Nonetheless, constant defeats got no ice with Van Anh as she would never give up but kept on trying to improve herself.

Van Anh shared her photos with her former high school classmates.
In retrospect, I think I was nothing special to be the next-door kid: no outstanding achievement, no shortlisting for any advanced class, no IELTS certificate. But I do not consider that a disadvantage or a reason to feel inferior because I don’t think there is anything to regret, though.

Live with no regret

I remember exactly the moment my mother told our neighbor that she would let me go to vocational school. They agreed that vocational school would be better because getting a university degree would not guarantee a stable job. I asked my mother what university was, I had no idea. My mom said she was joking, I will go to university anyway. …
I will go to university anyway.

The idea of going to college has always been at the back of the little girl’s mind since she started studying at Hung Yen Gifted High School, where she was able to befriend and interact with other talented and ambitious students. In grade 11, Van Anh even started to think of studying abroad, a dream that was so intense yet quickly curbed given her family’s limited financial background and her uncompetitive profile. But that does not mean she has stopped dreaming.

The first time I saw the video clips of VinUni while sitting on the bus, I almost cried because the school was exactly what I have always wanted - a truly international environment within distances from my house.

Six months and two applications later, Van Anh found herself happy beyond words after being admitted to VinUni’s first-ever cohort. The highly-merited 100% scholarship also seems to speak volumes to her younger self’s potential and hard work.

Van Anh finally fulfilled her dream to become a VinUnian.
Happiness only would not be enough. Every part of me and every version of myself, then and now, was filled with gratitude and pride.

Yes, I do.

Honestly, growing up in the countryside, I never thought I could study at an international, private institution like VinUni. But if you ask me if I feel deserving of it, yes! Yes, I do.
Even after joining VinUni, our little student never stopped working to improve herself.

Van Anh believes one’s background and academic achievement say very little about a person, their potential capabilities, and how much they can contribute to the world around them. Also, she was inspired to live by Uncle Ho’s credo: “Be Humble, Be Honest, and Be Brave,” which has given her and all her younger selves the motivation and mental strength needed to realize her dream.

That kind of motivation, small and childish as it might sound, holds the amazing power to carry little Van Anh through all the hardships, from having to wash her uniform every day after school because she only has one, getting up at dawn to help with farming, and owning up to stealing her mother’s money to buy some snacks,…

Her exchange-student version is also doing extremely well. 
Sometimes, when I look back, I even felt a bit ashamed that I could never be as hard-working and strong-willed as I used to be. But I am not disappointed because every single version of myself has, is, and will always try my best to create real values for life.




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