Up at 5:00 am for an early flight from Bangkok to Hanoi. I love flying into Hanoi, swooping neatly over the rice paddies and the everyday lives of the farmers. There are many realities of North Vietnam. Much of it is still very traditional and rural. Hanoi itself would have to be in the running for the most frenetic, bustling and energizing city in the world. It leaves one breathless standing amidst the cacophony of scooters and daily life.
There is a palpable pride in Hanoi and the students and their families that I meet here are, like so many modern Vietnamese, fiercely independent, hungry for opportunity and ready to become a part of the global economy. In fact, Vietnam is one of the fastest growing economies in Asia and these young people are keen to be heard.
This past September we enrolled our first two Vietnamese students. I have a full slate of interviews and meetings lined up over the next few days and I’m looking forward to getting to know more of these wonderful people.