RMIT scholarship recipient empowers students from ethnic minorities

RMIT scholarship recipient empowers students from ethnic minorities

RMIT Vice-Chancellor’s Scholar Nguyen My Nhi is empowering female secondary students in the K’Ho community to lead change and improve outcomes for disadvantaged families in their community.

Growing up in Lam Dong province where the K’Ho ethnic minority group occupies approximately 15 per cent of the population, Nhi has wanted to support the community since she was a young girl.

“I realised that most of the K’ho community are extremely disadvantaged due to their high rates of illiteracy and school drop-out,” said Nhi, who will be awarded the full RMIT Vice-Chancellor’s scholarship this October.

thumbnail-rmit-scholarship-recipient-empowers-students-from-ethnic-minorities 2020 RMIT Vice-Chancellor’s Scholar Nguyen My Nhi (wearing red top) formed the “For better soft skills of K’Ho students” group including female ethnic minority students from Tam Bo Secondary School, Lam Dong Province.

This motivated her to form the “For better soft skills of K’Ho students” group with seven K’Ho female students from Tam Bo secondary school earlier this year.

“In the K’Ho community, matriarchy is still strongly reserved, which means women are the pillar of the family,” Nhi said.

“They are entitled to decision-making in all important events while all housework is also put on their shoulders.”

“Our group wants to support K’Ho female students to overcome minority stress and fear of vulnerability so they can develop both personally and professionally.”

“In doing so, we hope they too can inspire and help their community.”

news-3-rmit-scholarship-recipient-empowers-students-from-ethnic-minorities Nhi (wearing red top) and her group visited a disadvantaged family in Di Linh District.

With her enthusiasm and inspiring leadership, Nhi’s group has raised 40 million Vietnamese dong, increased awareness of environmental responsibility and collaborated with other organisations to help disadvantaged people.

Headmaster of Tam Bo Secondary School, Mr Truong Van Thanh recalled the first time Nhi actively approached him to discuss her idea to form the group and include female students from his school.

“The 18-year-old girl told me she wanted to contribute to the ethnic minority communities, not only by providing material support, but also by helping K’Ho students enhance soft skills and develop social and environmental awareness,” Mr Thanh said.

“This is the first time ethnic minority students at my school have had a chance to participate in community activities outside their school. They have gained more confidence, building rapport quickly with other people and developed a spirit of solidarity.”

news-4-rmit-scholarship-recipient-empowers-students-from-ethnic-minorities The group helped the K’Ho community in Dangsron Hamlet, Ninh Gia Commune to clean a small ditch to avoid water stagnation.

Nhi believes her choice to study the Bachelor of Business (Economics and Finance) at RMIT will provide her with the necessary tools to grow her passion.

“I want to pursue a business degree and use my knowledge to connect K’Ho people with wider business networks so that they can improve their living standards,” Nhi said.

“I believe I will be equipped with the theoretical knowledge, technical skills and practical experience to fulfill my dream. My skills of leadership, communication, planning and management will be also nurtured and enhanced.”

In addition to her community works, Nhi’s intelligence and commitment to her studies made her an outstanding high school student who always ranked first during her high-school years and achieved many prestigious academic awards in French and in national competitions.

While Nhi will start her journey at RMIT this semester, she will continue to lead her group and hopes to create greater impact in the community through the connections she will make at RMIT.

Nhi’s future plan is to bridge the expanding gap between ethnic and majority groups in Vietnam.

Story: Thuy Le

  • Scholarships
  • Community

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