The British Council celebrated the recipients of the Study UK Alumni Awards 2021 in Vietnam by announcing the three Alumni Awards winners recognised for their outstanding achievements as business professionals, entrepreneurs and community leaders, and for their important contribution to strengthening collaborative ties between the UK and Vietnam.
The prestigious international award celebrates UK higher education and the achievements of UK alumni all over the world. Now in its 7th year, the award received more than 1,300 applications from international UK alumni in more than 114 countries, representing more than 148 UK higher education institutions across the UK. Recipients were selected for the three award categories: Professional Achievement, Entrepreneurial, and Social Impact.
The Professional Achievement Award, which recognises alumni who have distinguished themselves through exemplary leadership in their professional field, was presented toTran Van Thanh, a graduate of London Metropolitan University. Thanh is the first Vietnamese professional lighting designer and the creative mind behind the lighting of Dragon Bridge in Danang at Central Vietnam, which won the prestigious award of Best Citation by International Association Lighting Designer (IALD) in 2012, FX Design Award and Darc Award (2015).
The Social Impact Award, which acknowledges alumni who have made an exceptional contribution to creating positive social change, was presented to Ms Hoang Le Thuy Duong, a graduate of London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Duong is making a positive difference as an Ambassador for Facing The World, a charity providing crucial surgery for thousands of children born with facial differences. Duong registered for the UK Alumni Award with the hope of inspiring others as she credits her UK education as a major factor in her career success and life choices.
The Entrepreneurial Award, which highlights alumni who have played a leading role in innovation or creative solutions, was presented to Nguyen Phuong Thao, a graduate of the University of East Anglia. Thao and her team developed the first Circular Organic Agriculture Model in Vietnam with proven sustainable benefits: economic efficiency, zero-waste, farmer-friendliness, and production of healthy pork for a human to address Vietnams' challenge in organic pig farming transition to organic pig farming. Thao has received many awards and considerable recognition for her work in innovation and sustainable farming.
Upon receiving the award, Tran Van Thanh who is recognised for the Professional Achievement Award said that the award is clearly one of the most significant events of his professional career meanwhile the Entrepreneurial Award’s Nguyen Phuong Thao shared that the award is a great honour for her and the efforts she put in; and Hoang Le Thuy Duong said that receiving the Social Impact Award is uplifting news for her during a gloomy Covid year and that she was looking forward to sharing more wonderful achievements of her charity despite the challenges of the pandemic.
Donna McGowan, Director at the British Council in Vietnam said: ‘The remarkable individuals we’re celebrating today at the Study UK Alumni Awards in Vietnam consider their UK education as a major contributor to helping them excel in their chosen careers and shape the world around them. This year’s awards ceremony is testimony not only to the diversity of UK alumni and their endeavours, but also to the transformative impact of a UK education. According to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), with nearly 4,000 Vietnamese students studying higher education in UK in academic year 2018/19, I believe that we will have much to celebrate in the future.'