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US-funded project to modernize universities in Vietnam
The United States, through US Agency for International Development (USAID), launched a US$14.2 million partnership with three leading Vietnamese universities on August 1.

The five-year Partnership for Higher Education Reform, announced by Vice President Kamala Harris last fall in Hanoi, will collaborate with universities, key government officials, and industry partners to strengthen higher education in Vietnam.

US partner Indiana University will work with Vietnam’s three largest universities namely Vietnam National University, Hanoi, Vietnam National University, Ho Chi Minh city, and the University of Da Nang to improve their academic quality, enhance institutional governance, and enable them to serve as models of modern higher education across Vietnam.

The partnership will drive socio-economic development by benefitting more than 200,000 students and equip them to thrive in an increasingly competitive global market.

“The United States is a committed partner in supporting the success and long-term sustainability of Vietnam’s higher education institutions,” said US Ambassador Marc Knapper during remarks delivered at today’s event. “Through this partnership, together, we will collectively improve the quality and market-relevance of higher education to drive lasting growth.”

The partnership will work to achieve three objectives for the universities: increase sustainability and autonomy; improve academic quality; and strengthen research and innovation capacity. Core activities will strengthen university governance and financial systems, provide faculty training in the design of state-of-the-art courses, facilitate research collaborations, expand research capacity, and develop guidelines and incentives for prosperous partnerships between universities and the private sector.

VNU President Le Quan delivered a speech at the launch of PHER project

The Partnership for Higher Education Reform is the product of an extensive consultation process between USAID and the three largest Vietnamese universities, with numerous relevant entities such as the Ministry of Education and Training, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the Ministry of Science and Technology, Indiana University, and the World Bank.

Industry partners during implementation will include Purdue University, Amazon Web Services, the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, among others. The partnership helps advance higher education reforms that were called for under Vietnam’s 2018 Revised Law on Higher Education.

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