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18

Jun

How do our foreign students contribute to the local community?

Posted by SE Vietnam - Student Exchange Vietnam

We, ABROADER strongly believe that the internships and programs for our foreign students in Vietnam can exert influence on the local Vietnamese community. Thus, we can’t wait to share the EPICS project of the students from Arizona State University (ASU) collaborated with the students from Da Nang University of Technology (DUT). Let’s see what they’ve contributed to the local community with their works!

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What is EPICS?

EPICS stands for Engineering Projects in Community Service program. During the 10 days in Vietnam, students have to collaborate to build and utilize systems to tackle engineering-based problems for charities, schools and other not-for-profit organizations. In Arizona State University, EPICS is highly encouraged as it provides young students with experience of solving real-world problems with real community partners.

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What are our students doing in their EPICS project?

Overall, our students are working on the data collection and sensor system of ‘‘an overall system that would connect farmers to their crops on a data-driven technological level to compete with large agribusiness farm.’’ This will be a smart farming system that has sensors, automated irrigation and sustainable power supply. The purpose of this project is to provide Vietnamese with a sustainable water management solution and a database of their growing seasons.

The project stems from our foreign students’ desire to tackle local farmers’ concerns about water management and output. This is a real problem in the Central region of Vietnam where farmers have to deal with the fluctuating state of hydration.

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How do they conduct their project in Da Nang?

Our ASU students have been working on this project for about two semesters at their university. Their working time in Da Nang is the opportunity to accomplish final steps. For the sake of their productivity, ASU students followed Sprint working model – a very unfamiliar concept in Vietnam.

According to ATLASSIAN, ‘‘a sprint is a short, time-boxed period when a scrum team works to complete a set amount of work. The product owner discusses the objective that the sprint should achieve and the product backlog items that, upon completion, would achieve the sprint goal. The team then creates a plan for how they will build the backlog items and get them “Done” before the end of the sprint. The work items chosen and the plan for how to get them done is called the sprint backlog. By the end of sprint planning the team is ready to start work on the sprint backlog, taking items from the backlog, to “In-progress,” and “Done.”

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In the meantime, our students also received guidance from Vietnamese professors from Da Nang University of Technology. We also held the review session in which our students received feedback from other professor from the University of Natural Science in Ho Chi Minh city. After receiving professional comments and suggestions, they spent most of their time at Mercury – an innovation space in Da Nang to innovate their products. Additionally, they also went on field tests to launch their testing of their equipment.

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ABROADER believes that with their great teamwork and enthusiasm, ASU students will keep up the good work and have the completed products in the nearest future.

One happy fact: Their visit to Da Nang city was not only about ‘‘work, work, work’’. They also enjoyed other extracurricular activities organized by ABROADER. Our walking tour showed them around famous destinations of Da Nang city such as: Han Market, Da Nang cathedral, Cham Museum and Dragon Bridge! What’s more, how could we let them miss beautiful Hội An ancient town?

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Looking back at the journey with ASU students, we’re very grateful to working with them. Without them, we couldn’t know such interesting working tools and methods. Most importantly, their project and its positive influence have reinforced our belief in what ABROADER are doing: bring foreign students to Vietnam to support the local community.  

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