Chatting with Fulbright parent: “Liberal Arts Education is Crucial in a Volatile Era”

Recently, we had the chance to chat with Mr. Nguyen Huu Cuong, a Fulbright parent of two students – Nguyen Vu Tung Lam and Nguyen Thi Kim Anh. He shared some valuable insights from the perspective of a caring parent about his offspring’s future.

Mr. Nguyen Huu Cuong, a traditional medicine doctor from Hai Phong, is the proud father of two Fulbright students. Nguyen Vu Tung Lam, a graduate from the Class of 2023, recently earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and a minor in History. He’s now employed at NCT Corp, a company known for developing technology products for the youth, most notably His younger sister, Nguyen Thi Kim Anh, is currently in her third year at Fulbright, majoring in Social Studies and minoring in Art and Media Studies.

Mr. Huu Cuong with his children, Tung Lam and Kim Anh, at Fulbright’s First Undergraduate Commencement.

In a chat with Fulbright, Mr. Huu Cuong shared his approach for selecting an educational environment for his children. He also discussed the skills he believes are essential in today’s labor market, from his perspective as both a doctor and a small business owner.

Hello Mr. Huu Cuong, a Fulbright parent. Can you share your criteria for choosing a university for Tung Lam and Kim Anh?

Despite numerous university options, I directed my children towards a U.S. Liberal Arts Education. I’ve researched this model extensively and believe it’s an advanced training method globally.

Liberal Arts encourages students to explore their strengths and weaknesses and pursue a major after learning about different fields. Instead of training students for a specific profession, Liberal Arts education at Fulbright allows them to explore their interests and develop as proud independent individuals. This approach is critical in today’s changing era, where young people must be open and confident in adapting to changes.

As a Fulbright parent, what are your thoughts on Tung Lam and Kim Anh’s journey since joining Fulbright?

I believe my children have truly discovered themselves and become good citizens for the country. They’ve understood their strengths and talents and received considerable support from the school to nurture those strengths. They’ve become experts in their chosen fields. Fulbright has helped my children answer existential questions like “Who am I?” and “What is my role in society?”

Additionally, they’ve developed as socially-minded individuals. They’re honest, kind, and responsible citizens. I believe Tung Lam and Kim Anh possess the qualities of global citizens, yet retain their Vietnamese roots. This balance allows them to thrive in both the domestic market and abroad.

The question of the right university education orientation for children concerns many parents.

How do you feel about the learning journey at Fulbright, where Tung Lam and Kim Anh started by exploring themselves with five core courses spanning many fields?

Before university, Tung Lam and Kim Anh were good students in high school. However, I noticed they lacked self-confidence. Maybe it’s because the traditional study curriculum makes everyone look the same. They only knew how to solve problems in taught ways, and their unique abilities were not developed.

They also actively participated in extracurricular activities to hone personal skills. Tung Lam organized numerous social activities, including SEALNet, contributing to the development of a young Southeast Asian leaders network. Kim Anh founded the Debate Club at Tran Phu Gifted High School (Hai Phong). She also organized community-building activities for Kpop fans.

However, I believe they can be much more than that. Since they joined Fulbright, I’ve noticed that my children are more confident and can view problems from a wider perspective. They know how to ask important questions and find their own ways to answer them.

In today’s rapidly changing society, focusing on a single field can lead to stagnation. Liberal arts education has helped my children develop lifelong learning skills. Even with expert knowledge in a specific field, they’re open to learning new things. They’re confident and up-to-date with societal changes. Studying two majors at Fulbright, I believe they can work in various fields, not limited to any specific profession.

Mr. Huu Cuong’s family

Before enrolling at Fulbright, Tung Lam and Kim Anh explored many overseas study options. Tung Lam had an SAT certificate, and Kim Anh received a full scholarship from a prestigious university in Shanghai. Why did they still choose Fulbright?

I’ve seen many young people study abroad after high school. Upon returning, they struggle to reintegrate into the domestic market. Although they can secure a job and earn a living, they don’t fully understand the local culture and history, making it hard to work with Vietnamese people. They also struggle to adapt to local laws, work methods, and unique cultural aspects.

I believe to excel in a job, one must understand the history of its locality. Tung Lam and Kim Anh, like other Fulbright students, have a global perspective but also deeply understand Vietnamese problem-solving methods. They are truly global citizens and proud Vietnamese.

Thank you for sharing your valuable insights from a Fulbright parent, Mr. Huu Cuong. We wish you and your family good health!

Recent Posts