Vietnamese scholars, professionals win Australian awards

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A group of 59 Vietnamese scholars and professionals have won Australian Endeavour Awards worth around AUD9.8 million for study, research and professional development in Australia in 2011.

The Australian Endeavour Awards are prestigious scholarships for high-achieving candidates in the Asia-Pacific region. They develop leadership, research and academic excellence and build linkages between Australia and other Asia-Pacific countries.

Vietnamese applicants have received the highest number of awards of any Southeast Asian country, including the highly competitive postgraduate awards, the Australian Embassy said in a press release.

They won five of the 20 Prime Minister's Australia Asia Endeavour Awards.

Bui Thu Thuy, deputy director general of the Department of Sports, Entertainment, and Economic Information with VTV3, will use her PhD thesis to examine how public distance education develops effective programs for target audiences, especially in rural areas.

Do Thanh Hai from the Centre for Political & Security Studies, Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, will study security and stability in the South China Sea, while Le Hong Hiep, International Relations lecturer from the University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Vietnam National University Ho Chi Minh City, will examine recent transformations in Sino-Vietnamese relations as well as the response of Vietnam to the development of China as a global power.

Bui Thi Bich Lien, a judicial reform expert, will look at informal dispute resolution in Vietnam in her PhD research; and Nguyen Quynh Anh, a lecturer at Hanoi School of Public Health, will look into how best adolescent reproductive health education can be implemented in Vietnam.

Vietnamese students also won five Endeavour Vocational Awards for studies in hospitality management, building technology and early childhood education.

"The 2011 Endeavour awardees are outstanding scholars and potential leaders in their individual fields. I am confident that, after their return from Australia, they will apply their new skills and knowledge and experiences to contribute to Vietnam's development," said Allaster Cox, the Australian Ambassador to Vietnam.

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