From their very first day at RMIT Vietnam, students are guided along pathways that connect their studies to their future careers and lives.
These pathways are marked by programs and activities that supplement robust academic learning by instilling the practical skills students need to be ready for life and work.
Work-ready with Personal Edge
One such program is Personal Edge, an initiative which aims to enable RMIT Vietnam students to develop the right skills to impress future employers, was redesigned and launched at the end of 2016.
The new format, designed specifically for RMIT students and organised around six skill sets that employers seek in potential employees, is part of RMIT Vietnam’s efforts to equip its students with skills that will make a difference in their future, said President Professor Gael McDonald at the program launch.
“The needs of future employers are not only for graduates with industry-specific knowledge – they also need employees who have soft skills to effectively communicate, collaborate and negotiate in this fast-paced 21st-century world,” Professor McDonald said.
Through Personal Edge – as well as the University’s academic courses – students develop the skills to become creative thinkers, confident communicators, cross-cultural team players, ethical leaders, career strategists and digital citizens. The skill sets are delivered through innovative workshops and diverse extra-curricular activities available to students every semester.
Those who complete the program receive an acknowledgement in their official transcript. Upon graduation, students also obtain a Personal Edge Certificate and a digital portfolio to support their career development.
Bachelor of Business (Accounting) student Nguyen Ton Quang Phu, the first student to complete every module of Personal Edge, said he grew and developed during his time in the program, and proved his creative thinking skills through a series of activities undertaken both inside and outside the University. This included a two-day camp in Vung Tau and acting as the mentoring team leader in a Management Accounting course. Phu believes he will be able to apply the skills he learned in the program throughout his life and career.
A competitive edge with industry connections
Throughout the student journey, RMIT Vietnam creates opportunities for its students to connect with industry.
Manuela Spiga, RMIT Vietnam Senior Manager of Careers & Industry Relations, said the University has built strong industry connections with major multinational companies, as well as small and medium enterprises both in Vietnam and abroad.
“These connections help RMIT students to find jobs, training experiences through internships, and great networking opportunities,” Ms Spiga explained.
“A great way to get the most reliable and accurate answers related to industry and future careers is to talk to people who are actually working in industry. That’s where the Industry Mentoring program comes in.”
Since the start of 2018, the program has connected 62 RMIT Vietnam students with industry professionals to explore career options both in Vietnam and abroad. They meet for a minimum of one hour every four weeks over the 12-week mentoring partnership.
Meanwhile, the University’s Industry Networking Night gives students a chance to go beyond their comfort zone and present themselves to professionals.
The two recent Industry Networking Nights, held in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, brought together more than 100 high-profile industry representatives and generated networking opportunities for more than 200 students.
“Student projects from different programs were showcased at the event, and the best ones were voted on by industry guests. It was a good way to show industry guests the calibre of our students,” Ms Spiga said.
“Students had to step out of their comfort zone, clearly present their ideas and projects to potential employers, and actively engage in conversations that might lead to a job interview opportunity.”
Nguyen Thi Anh Ngoc, a Bachelor of Business (Logistics and Supply Chain Management) final-year student who had just finished a six-month internship at KPMG, joined the Industry Networking Night to look for another internship opportunity.
“Two people I talked to asked me to send my CV for intern positions as they are looking for new talent for their organisations,” Ngoc shared.
RMIT Vietnam’s Internship program receives great support from industry, with nearly 600 internships offered to students every year.
As students near the end of their journey, they benefit from the University’s Job Shop service and Recruitment Days events. Here they can find full-time and management trainee positions, which can also lead to a permanent job.
This year, the University has placed greater emphasis on connecting final-year students with established employers. As a result, there have been more Recruitment Days, a total of six events involving 20 well-known local and international companies including Central Group, Tetra Pak, Lazada and Prudential.
“In the end, what we are trying to do at RMIT Vietnam is look at different ways for students to develop transferable skills which can help prepare them for life and work,” Ms Spiga concluded.
Story: Ha Hoang