Post-Covid, Experiencing Hanoi, Doing it All 

Day 0 marks the day of the start of the trip. The students gathered in the wee hours of the morning. Although feeling tired, they were all excited about the trip abroad to Vietnam, known as the land of the “Ascending Dragon” for its geological shape on the world map. Upon reaching the airport and putting our belongings in the hotel, we had a nice stroll in the afternoon park, in which there were many locals doing exercises and enjoying the scenery. After our afternoon walk, we had a hearty bowl of the local iconic pho, rice-made noodles simmered in beef broth. Afterwards, we headed to the supermarket to get some essential groceries. This concludes our day. 

On Day 1, the program was kick-started by the VNU-UET Vice Rector and Professors from the various department, as they warmly welcome the SUTD students. Afterwards, the SUTD students shared about their 3.007 design thinking and Innovation projects and illustrated the big design thinking process. The VNU students were captivated and asked questions in response to the presentation. Afterwards, Prof Hoang Van Xiem shared a lecture on the “Introduction to Robotics Engineering Program at VNU.” Subsequently, we split up the lab sessions from the different departments. Not all of us knew each other as well and this was an opportunity to get to know one another. 

On days 2 and 3, we had a lecture from our brilliant professor, Prof Tee Hui, regarding design thinking. The double diamond concept was introduced to the VNU-UET students and staff. Afterwards, the student headed off in their groups to continue their lab sessions with the various faculties. Afterwards, we were delighted with a lecture from Prof Tran Quoc Long, regarding solar PVs. 

On day 4, the students had their final presentation and shared what they have learnt during the laboratory sessions.  

On day 5, we visited Thanh Chuong Viet Palace. Thanh Chuong Viet Palace is one of the most attractive cultural heritages in Vietnam. It was built in 2001, originating from the idea of artisan Thanh Chuong whose wish is to reproduce the cultural marks of Vietnamese generations in the past. Hence, the palace reflects the Vietnamese culture and history through a complex of traditional Vietnam architecture, outstanding artwork, and pieces of folk heritage. Afterwards, we visited the national museum of Vietnam to learn about the history and culture of Vietnam. 

On day 6, feeling tired but with a heart full, we bided our Vietnamese friends goodbye and headed back to Singapore. Thank you, Vietnam, and hope we’ll see each other again. 


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