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Gaining career skills

Gaining Career Skills

Vietnamese student Thuy Nguyen is gaining valuable work experience even though she hasn’t yet finished her university studies.

Thuy came to New Zealand as a high school student and considered studying to become an architect until she saw the Hobbit film trilogy. The movies were filmed in New Zealand, which Thuy discovered was an international hub of expertise in special effects and other forms of digital design.

Thuy is now studying at Victoria University of Wellington for a Bachelor of Design Innovation, a cross-disciplinary degree that emphasises connections between design and the real world.

“Our assignments are based on real-life situations, so they’re very practical. We have lots of time for self-study as well as attending classes,” says Thuy.

“Our assignments are based on real-life situations, so they’re very practical. We have lots of time for self-study as well as attending classes.”

“I’ve already found this way of learning helpful for my career. A group of Vietnamese commerce graduates from Victoria are launching their own start-up company in Viet Nam, and I’m working part-time for them as a freelance designer.”

Thuy says studying in New Zealand has also given her personal skills that will help her succeed in the workforce.

“In Viet Nam we are only allowed to ask questions at the end of class, but in New Zealand we are encouraged to ask questions during class. The teachers respect us and tell us there is no such thing as a silly question,” she says.

“I used to be a shy girl from Viet Nam, but now I am stronger and more independent. I’m more open to people, and to trying new things.”

After finishing her studies, Thuy hopes to return to Viet Nam to work.

“Special effects design and web design skills are rare in Viet Nam, so my qualifications will be very useful there. I want to use the skills I gained in New Zealand to help improve Vietnam’s future.”


By Linley Boniface

Updated 3 years ago

Linley Boniface is a contract writer for Education New Zealand. She is based in Wellington, her favourite city in New Zealand. A former journalist, Linley spent a year in Montreal, Canada, as a secondary school student. 

*Views expressed are the blogger's own
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