The month before turning 29

These are thoughts and activities from August – September 2018 Our trip to Bangkok began with Trinh and I playing billiards in the Saigon Airport Bar. This is the only place where we ever play billiards, despite the fact that the ground floor of Trinh’s house is a billiards saloon. I guess that with the airport’s windows looking out on taxi-ing planes, fancy drinks served … Continue reading The month before turning 29

Gordon’s Visit to Saigon

Friday, October 20th 2017 Friday was Vietnamese Women’s Day, which is kind of like Mothers’ Day & Valentine’s Day put together. After work, it was raining and I walked to a small mobile phone shop near my house and bought Trinh a used dark purple Fitbit HR as a gift for Women’s Day. Then I got a call from Gordon, my uncle, that he was … Continue reading Gordon’s Visit to Saigon

Reflecting on Being 27

Looking back on the past year, when I was 27, it has been a step forward regarding career and relationships. I remember at my high school prom a Jesus-looking young gun raised a toast and said, “ A step not towards love is a step well wasted”. That was too profound for high schoolers – but lets trace my steps when I was 27. 27 … Continue reading Reflecting on Being 27

Policy Brief: Expanding Vietnamese Private Higher Education

Abstract: This brief provides recommendations to assist Vietnam’s Ministry of Education and Training reach its goal of 40% private sector enrollment. This brief begins by explaining Vietnam’s rationale for expanding higher education enrollment. It explores the historical context of Vietnamese higher education policy, discusses the results of past reforms and notes how academic quality, financial stability, and low reputation hinders private sector enrollment. It concludes with … Continue reading Policy Brief: Expanding Vietnamese Private Higher Education

Mixing Languages or Balling Socks?

The purpose of this entry is to share my daily life with my friends and family and to preserve some of my fleeting thoughts. The purpose of my entire blog is to preserve some parts of my experience so that I can look back on these entries and remember what I thought and when I thought it. As this blog turns nine years old, ancient … Continue reading Mixing Languages or Balling Socks?

Back in Southeast Asia

I felt a twinge of excitement in my heart when I arrived at Taipei International Airport. I was excited to be back in Asia. Surrounded by a sense of new adventure and familiarity. It was fun to order Taiwanese foods and rediscover items in the convenience stores while I waited for my flight to Vietnam.   And then I felt a thud in my heart … Continue reading Back in Southeast Asia

Transitions to Marketization: Vietnam and Poland

  Executive Summary The following essay focuses on the challenges and successes of Vietnam’s higher education system since marketization in 1986. The essay explores the initial reforms, demands, and requirements of the knowledge economy on modern Vietnam. The essay draws on the experience of Poland’s post-soviet marketization to offer strategies of public-fees, expansion of the private sector, and loan incentives. The essay will justify how … Continue reading Transitions to Marketization: Vietnam and Poland

Thoughts on Traditional Marriage vs. Modern Saigon

Recently, I’ve been thinking about the trouble my co-worker has taken on as a young housewife. She is maybe only twenty-two and married into a family that traditionally expects her to do all the housework. She wakes up at 5 A.M. to clean all the floors of her husband’s families home. Then she cooks three meals for the day and arrives at work by eight. … Continue reading Thoughts on Traditional Marriage vs. Modern Saigon

The Quantitative Challenge to Vietnamese Higher Education

In 1986, Vietnam began to open and decentralize its’ economy. This policy shift is termed Doi Moi | Rejuvenation. For our purposes, the story of Vietnam’s educational advancement will begin here. Until Doi Moi private enterprise including educational ventures were largely prohibited. Tertiary: a collective noun for both university (bachelors+) and college (associates) institutes. Tertiary Institutes since Doi Moi   1987 1997 2009 2010 Total … Continue reading The Quantitative Challenge to Vietnamese Higher Education

Challenges in Learning Vietnamese

When I was fifteen I started studying Japanese. At that time, I learned very quickly and rarely forgot anything, but ten years later, at twenty-five, my learning process for Vietnamese is quite different. Considering that I will live in Vietnam for one year, I have much less skill to show for my effort relative to the year I spent in Japan. The following will explore … Continue reading Challenges in Learning Vietnamese

Vietnamese Writings March 2015

Where I want to Live: March 27th   Anh không chắc chắn là anh muốn sống ở đâu. Tuy nhiên, anh chắc chắn là anh muốn sống ở nước có khí hâu nóng. Anh nghĩ anh không muốn sống ở nước mỹ. Có thể, anh nên sống ở miền nam Châu Á. anh thích singapore, bangkok, australia, việt nam hơn. Nếu anh may mắn, nghề … Continue reading Vietnamese Writings March 2015

On the Japanese & Vietnamese Language

Simply put the Japanese and Vietnamese language share in common Chinese influence. This influence can be readily seen in modern vocabulary and be inferred from the writing systems both past and present. Although their shared heritage is well documented by linguists and historical fact, I stumbled upon it myself over the last three months of learning Vietnamese. Continue reading On the Japanese & Vietnamese Language

The Happiest News | 嬉しいヌーズ

I am bouncing with happiness. My beloved Nepali students have arrived in Japan. They found jobs in the services and are doing well. To the surprise of the Japanese customers, they celebrated a Nepali holiday in their traditional dress in a family restaurant. 今日スゴクハーピーだ!ネパールの生徒が日本に着いた!仕事も出来た!ネパールの伝統的な着物を着たままファミレスでネパールの祭りも祝った!僕の絵顔が切れない! All of us singing together in Nepal before immigrating Continue reading The Happiest News | 嬉しいヌーズ

Sunday, October 26th

I arose along with the rising tide of heat in my room. When the morning sun begins to bake my metal roof, the warm waves wake me. I stumble over myself to get into a refreshing cool morning shower. I rinse away the nighttime sweat from sleeping without an air conditioner. After the shower the morning feels perfectly cool. I got dressed and descended down … Continue reading Sunday, October 26th