In Oct 2015, IGPVN launched a students’ competition for students of the University of Natural Resources and Environment (HUNRE) in HCM City, the University of Science, Vietnam National University in HCM City and the Can Tho University. All three universities are located in or close to the Mekong Delta, the priority region of the project.
The aim of the competition is to invite students of different faculties to develop communication and other relevant activities with communities in the Delta to create higher awareness on the need to save water resources with a specific focus on groundwater protection. A set of criteria was developed to select the successful candidates for the award where the most important is the implementation capability of their ideas in a reasonable time and for a reasonable budget. Applications are also selected along the criteria of innovation, ability to be multiplied and possible impact.
The contest will be held on 2 levels: the three universities will join together and award their best applicants in a ceremony to be hold in September. The best of the three universities will then be awarded on the National Awarding Ceremony together with the selection of the best ideas called and selected by the NAWAPI, which will be held at the occasion of the VACI workshop in early October.
By the instrument of the contest we expect to create more awareness for urgent protection needs of water resources of the young academics who will be the future decision-maker in Vietnam. Therefore the IGPVN also offered a range of seminars and trainings about water and groundwater issues for the three universities as well as a specific training on communication and presentation skills for the successful applicants.
Our partner organization NAWAPI is in charge of selecting the final candidates and hopes, through this tool also to bind successfully graduated academics for further job positions at NAWAPI and its sub-institutions. Thus the award is also intended as a human resource development tool for IGPVN’s project partners.
If this approach is evaluated to be successful it is planned to expand the contest to other universities in Vietnam in the coming time.