Fulbright University Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City

logoThe Fulbright Economics Teaching Program (FETP) announced the “Fulbright University Vietnam” project as it celebrated its twentieth anniversary on Jan 17, 2015, an event concurrent with the celebration of the 20th anniversary of Vietnam – U.S. diplomatic relationship. FETP is a bridge in the U.S. – Vietnam relationship with the mission to promote Vietnam’s renovation through research and training.

The Fulbright University Vietnam development plan envisions expanding from the current master’s degree in public policy to similar degree programs in management and in technology. Broader undergraduate and doctoral programs are envisioned subsequently.

Together, they represent a significant broadening of Vietnam’s spectrum of higher-education institutions, many of which focus narrowly on engineering or technical subjects, or are proprietary schools offering language or management training; the country does not now have a keystone, liberal-arts- and research-focused higher-education institution operated on the academic principles that are found in comparable universities in Korea, Japan, or the United States.

For two decades the Fulbright School has been operating according to governance principles that are prerequisites for excellence: autonomy, meritocracy, accountability, and high standards. This foundation has enabled FETPto evolve through different stages of development, from the one-year program in applied economics to the two-year Master in Public Policy program. Research and policy dialogue also evolved to tackle issues of importance to Vietnam’s socio-economic development.

Since its inception FETP has enrolled twenty classes, training close to 1,200 participants who are strongly committed to contributing to the country’s development. FETP’scurriculum includes courses of global knowledge developed in collaboration with first-rate international universities and covers critical policy issues that Vietnam faces. To succeed in the intense training program at the Fulbright School, participants must be conscientious, determined and disciplined.

The US Congress has approved around US$20 million for a project to establish Fulbright University Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City. The project will be executed by the US Department of State in cooperation with the Trust for University Innovation (TUIV) in Vietnam. The TUIV, which is headquartered in Cambridge, has also raised funds for the project from sponsors in the U.S. and Vietnam. The project, now awaiting an investment license, needs a total of around $70 million.