On Thursday, 15 December, RMIT Vietnam launched an alumni chapter for the Centre of Technology (CoT) during an event in Ho Chi Minh City.
The chapter is the first of its kind for RMIT Vietnam. According to Manuela Spiga, Senior Manager Careers and Employability Service, RMIT Vietnam has a long-running alumni network, but this year the university has begun an initiative to establish alumni chapters based on specific disciplines – such as IT and Engineering – as well as, potentially, geography.
“In our network we have 10,000 alumni…and many said that being invited to attend discipline-specific or common interest events was important for them,” Spiga says.
Up to this point, most alumni networking events have been parties, lunches and dinners, according to Spiga, and alumni were looking for more focused opportunities.
“We want to engage them more and enhance their affiliation with us by connecting RMIT with their professions or interests,” she shares.
Nguyen Hoang Phuc is a member of the alumni chapter’s executive board. He graduated from RMIT Vietnam with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Software Engineering) degree a decade ago and is now a country sales manager at Infor, the enterprise software provider and strategic technology company.
While speaking at the launch event, he outlined three goals for the chapter. First, it will “network and connect all IT and engineering alumni of RMIT Vietnam,” a group spread over 12 years of graduations.
Phuc goes on, explaining that it will “help and support every alumni through events, programs such as workshops and trips to visit other IT and manufacturing companies.”
Thirdly, the executive board will organise volunteer opportunities, giving alumni the chance to contribute to the community around them.
For RMIT Vietnam's Software Engineering Program Manager Tran Ngoc Quang, the establishment of the alumni chapter is about helping graduates make career progress in the burgeoning technology sector in Vietnam.
“Our graduates are already highly sought after by some of the biggest names in the technology sector. However, after working for a few years many alumni don't know how to get to the next stage of their careers.” Tran says.
“The development of this alumni chapter will help them to identify career paths, and to connect to senior position and business opportunities not only in Vietnam but also overseas.”
Phuc concurred, adding that the chapter ultimately hopes to have older alumni create paths for new graduates to enter the tech industry.
“Frankly speaking, RMIT IT alumni are quite popular on the job market due to their strong soft skills,” Phuc explains. “I know that every alumnus’ company is looking for IT talent, and they can become their company’s representative to introduce more RMIT students to their work.”
Story: Mike Tatarski