On the occasion of the traditional Vietnamese New Year, various programs such as "Beloved Vietnamese Spring," "Ethnic Tết," and voluntary activities during Tet have become familiar events, attracting a large number of international students studying at the university to participate.
Immersing themselves in the lively, joyful, warm, and diverse atmosphere, adorned with traditional ao dai dresses, vibrant red lucky money envelopes, and the delicious flavors of traditional dishes, has created an impressive Tet picture in the hearts of international students.
Experiencing Vietnamese Tet culture through distinctive programs
Wearing the traditional ao dai dress of Vietnam, Toum - a Laotian student, shared: "Today, participating in the 'Ethnic Tết' event, I had the opportunity to experience many interesting activities such as making banh chung (square glutinous rice cake), calligraphy writing, and especially wearing the Vietnamese ao dai dress. I feel extremely proud and can feel the warm and intimate atmosphere when immersing myself in the traditional Tet atmosphere of the Vietnamese people."
Toum - the third girl from the left.
Sharing the same feeling, a group of Lao students expressed: "For the first time, we had the chance to enjoy traditional Vietnamese dishes, especially chung cake, and we were truly impressed by the delicious flavors, delicate preparation, and special meaning of the dishes through the sharing of Vietnamese students."
For Choun - a Cambodian student shared: "Coming from Cambodia, I find that the way Vietnamese celebrate Tet shares some interesting similarities with our Chol Chnam Thmay, partly because we're both in Southeast Asia. Like here in Vietnam, during Chol Chnam Thmay, families gather, prepare delicious food, and clean our houses together to welcome the new year with fresh starts. A unique tradition in Cambodia is pouring water on each other's hands and shoulders, symbolizing washing away the old year's troubles and welcoming good fortune."
Through these programs, international students at the University are able to immerse themselves in the joy of Vietnamese Tet. This also helps students studying abroad to reduce their homesickness during their time studying at the university.
French students participating in the 'Ethnic Tết' event
Warmth of love through volunteer activities for the community
Vietnamese Tet is not only brightened by the colors of apricot blossoms and peach blossoms but also warmed by charitable activities, sharing love. "Ấn Xanh [Green Print] 2024" is one such program, bringing meaningful and memorable experiences to international students at Ho Chi Minh City Open University.
From January 27 to 29, 2024, "Ấn Xanh 2024" took place in Phuoc Vinh Dong commune, Can Giuoc district, Long An province. The program was organized by the OU Green Plus Club in collaboration with the People's Committee of the commune, attracting the participation of a large number of international students, especially students from Laos.
The activities of the "Ấn Xanh 2024" program are not only beneficial to the community but also create opportunities for international students to experience the volunteer program on the occasion of Tet within the framework of the university.
Throughout the program, Laotian students participated in practical activities such as making decorations from recycled materials, preparing meaningful gifts for disadvantaged children and families, and organizing events for children in the local area. In addition, international students experienced the distinctive features of traditional Tet with lively activities such as making Chung cake, enjoying traditional Vietnamese dishes like gio lua (Vietnamese sausage), pickled onions, cultural exchanges, and more.
Vietnamese and Laotian students participating in the event
For Moukthida Tamayod, "Ấn Xanh 2024" was an opportunity to explore Vietnamese Tet culture: "In Laos, we don't have customs like making Chưng cake, Tét cake on Tết like in Vietnam. At the program, I madeChưng cake, Tét cake for the first time. Although I'm not fluent in Vietnamese, Vietnamese students always try to communicate and help me. Thanks to such interesting activities, I have made more Vietnamese friends and understood more about Vietnamese culture."
Mouthika Tamayod - the girl from the left
And for Monty Phommachit, "Ấn Xanh 2024" brought joy in sharing: "At first, I participated in 'Ấn Xanh 2024' to learn more about Vietnamese culture and improve my Vietnamese language skills. But during the participation, I realized that my activities and small gifts brought joy to many others. At the end of the program, my happiness did not only come from understanding more about Vietnamese Tet culture but also from helping and bringing a happier Tet to many people."
Monty - the first student from the left
More than just a volunteer program, "Ấn Xanh 2024" has spread love and solidarity between international students and the local community. This valuable experience helps students understand more about Vietnamese culture and feel the spirit of solidarity and mutual love of the Vietnamese people during the traditional Tet holiday.