In his working visit to Vietnam Japan University (VJU), Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc expressed his expectation that the university would maintain its role model as the pioneer to pilot the education reforms with disseminating impact both Vietnam and Japan.
On May 15th, 2017, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc paid a working visit to Vietnam Japan University (Vietnam National University, Hanoi).
The delegation of the Government of Vietnam had the participation of ministerial officials from the Ministry of Education & Training, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Ministry of Planning & Investment. The managers of Vietnam National University, Hanoi, and managers, Japanese experts, lecturers, and students of Vietnam Japan University received the visit of Prime Minister.
From Japan’s side, the event also had the participation of Mr. Takebe Tsutomu, Special Advisor to the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Alliance, Mr.Umeda Kunio, Japanese Ambassador to Vietnam, and the leaders of Japan International Cooperation Agency – JICA.
Representatives of Vietnam and Japan’s media and news agencies attended and reported on the event.
In his speech, Prof. Furuta Motoo, Rector of VJU, informed that the university organized the launching and opening ceremony of the first master program on September 9th, 2016. “The achievement of the very first batch is 60 potential graduate students, many of whom present here today to His Excellency”, said Prof. Furuta Motoo. From the very beginning, the university applies an advanced higher education management method and high-quality training approaches according to Japanese standards. Currently, more than 50 percent of the technical curriculum is delivered by Japanese lecturers.
“Vietnam Japan University fully acknowledges its role as an important entity, contributing to the innovation of higher education in Vietnam and the training of a high-quality human resource for the transformation of economic growth in Vietnam, and at the same time, strengthening the bilateral relationship between Vietnam and Japan. To achieve this goal, VJU is applying an advanced higher education management method and high quality training approach, adopting Japanese standards in the first place. It is fortunate that, since our establishment, Vietnam Japan University has successfully built partnerships with more than 30 Japanese universities, particularly University of Tokyo, Osaka University, University of Tsukuba, Yokohama National University, Ritsumeikan University, Waseda University, Ibaraki University. Vietnam National University, Hanoi has largely supported us”, Rector Furuta Motoo demonstrated in his speech.
Rector of VJU proposed the Government of Vietnam to issue the special financial mechanism soon, expedite the approval of VJU’s campus construction in Hoa Lac Hi-tech Park, and facilitate the borrowing of Japan’s ODA loan with a concessional mechanism for this construction so that VJU can increase the training capacity to 2000 students per year.
In his speech in the event, Dr. Nguyen Kim Son, President of Vietnam National University, Hanoi conveyed sincere gratitude to the attention that Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc paid to VJU, the seventh member university under Vietnam National University, Hanoi. President Nguyen Kim Son demonstrated that since the beginning of this project, Vietnam National University, Hanoi had acknowledged the importance and unique meaning of VJU. Therefore, Vietnam National University, Hanoi, had delegated all the necessary resources to the establishment and operation of VJU.
On the evaluation of VJU’s achievements, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said, established on July 21st, 2014, VJU is a symbol of the strategic partnership and comprehensive cooperation between Vietnam and Japan, to become an advanced university at a regional and international level, converging the state-of-the-art knowledge of international education as well as the strengths and exclusive values of both countries Vietnam and Japan.
Seeing the strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan at its peak, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc informed that there had been several important visits paid by leaders of both countries just over the first half of 2017.
In the working agendas of these visits, both Vietnam and Japan highlighted the importance of cooperation in education, and VJU had always been considered a specific and highly prioritized project.
According to the Prime Minister, given a short period of time and despite various difficulties in the first stage of establishment, both Vietnam and Japan sides have managed to make some important achievements.
“The experience of Japan in the 19th century shows that education is the way to escape poverty and backward development, and head forwards to the comprehensive development for the whole country.” “In the context of globalization and Industry 4.0, training and education play a crucial role, determining the possibility to seize opportunities, take the fast track, increase the quality of growth and national competitiveness,” the Prime Minister emphasized. “Vietnam considers education the national strategy, and human resource development, especially high-quality human resource, a strategic breakthrough for socio-economic development.”
Thus, the Prime Minister suggested that VJU should aim to become a research-oriented university at international level, serving as the cradle of the elite intellectual class for the society. Not only focusing on technical research, but the university should also pay attention to create working culture and discipline for young people, develop comprehensively, ranging from skills, qualities, to research capacity. Especially, VJU needs to establish close and effective partnerships with the business community. The training programs and contents must focus on the areas where Japan owns the competitive advantages, align with the actual demands in Vietnam, and keep pace with international development.
Three focuses of cooperation
To realize these objectives, the Prime Minister suggested that “for the time to come, we need to cooperate on several issues,” specifying three points in focus.
First, complete the university’s development model and the management structure, orienting towards modernity and advancement. Being a member university of Vietnam National University, Hanoi, VJU needs to collaborate and work closely with other member universities and institutions in training, research and shared infrastructure. Simultaneously, VJU needs to form the strategic orientation towards the key sectors, where Japanese partners own competitive advantages, and Vietnam has the demands but not yet has favorable conditions to develop.
Second, to focus on developing a contingent of competent scientists and managers with high thinking ability, suitable methodology, and advanced higher education management skills. Not only focus on strengthening the technical competency and expertise for the teaching staff and employees, VJU should also widely open the door to create exchange opportunities for young lecturers and talented people who want to dedicate their contribution to the development of the university and the country.
To realize this objective, the university needs to create an open space, an environment with abundant cultural identity, promoting critical thinking, diversity, principles of equality and democracy, continuous innovation on mechanisms, policies, management methods, and updates on new developments of the Industry 4.0. VJU must maintain its role model as the pioneer and serve as the institution to pilot the education reforms with disseminating impact in both Vietnam and Japan.
The third focus of the cooperation is that the training and scientific research must be relevant and adaptive to the demands of the employers and the economies; serve as the meeting point of Oriental cultural similarities, the bridge and the symbol of the strategic relationship between Vietnam and Japan, and to a broader extend, the comprehensive symbol of the model of education cooperation for the sustainable development in ASEAN and Asia.
Regarding VJU’s proposals, Prime Minister informed that the Government of Vietnam is facilitating the draft decree on the self-management mechanism for public education institutions and special financial regulations for international cooperation universities, applicable to Vietnamese-German University, Vietnam Japan University, Vietnam-France University, including the mechanism on payroll, remuneration, tuition fee, autonomous management, etc.
Vietnam’s ministers and agencies are facilitating the completion of regulations on the borrowing of concessional ODA loans from the Government of Japan to construct VJU. In the upcoming official visit of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to Japan, this will be discussed in more detail. At the same time, Vietnam’s agencies will make the best efforts to complete the feasibility study by the end of 2018, prepare the counterpart funding to implement the preparatory activities for the construction of the VJU campus in Hoa Lac Hi-tech Park.
“I expect the success of Vietnam Japan University will generate positive spillover effects to other member universities of Vietnam National University, Hanoi and other Vietnam’s universities” Prime Minister expressed, “we have high expectations on Vietnam Japan University, on the values that you will bring to the society.” The Government of Vietnam commits cooperating with the Japanese side to successfully develop Vietnam Japan University into a symbol of the friendship and cultural cooperation between Vietnam and Japan.
Some photos taken in the Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to Vietnam Japan University
Mr. Takebe Tsutomu, Special Advisor to the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Alliance, addressing a speech expressing the sincere thank and great pleasure to welcome Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, the leaders of the Government of Vietnam to Vietnam Japan University.