Cambodia is considered to be the next big destination in Southeast Asia for foreign businesses, with a low cost of labor and a wealth of natural resources. Despite these advantages, investors are facing the challenge of finding local workers who are display the skills and experience necessary for managerial roles.

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Alex Boome, Hinrich Foundation’s Program Director introduced about the organization and its scholarship programs at the information session in Phnom Penh, May 21, 2016.

Bridging the gap

Acknowledging this challenge, Hinrich Foundation has taken the initiative to collaborate with Cambodian industries to sponsor Masters-level scholarships and provide quality employment opportunities for talented local students, with the intent to equip them with desired skills and leadership potential to meet the needs of the industry.

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Nearly 100 people registered and attended the information session in Phnom Penh, May 21, 2016.

Partnerships for positive change

Hinrich Foundation is currently in its second year of partnership with adidas and its Cambodian supplier Can Sport Shoes, and is offering full scholarships for Cambodian students to earn their Master of Science in Production Engineering at the Vietnamese-German University in Ho Chi Minh City.

This master’s program managed and instructed by faculty and staff from Leipzig University, one of the most prestigious academic institutions in Germany. Last year, four students from Cambodia and Myanmar were awarded the full scholarship.

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Hinrich Foundation’s team members, scholars and alumni at the information session in Phnom Penh, May 21, 2016.

Spreading the word

An engaging information session on this Hinrich Foundation Trade Leader Scholarship was successfully held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on May 21, 2016, attracting an impressive audience of nearly 100 guests.

The event included a variety of speakers, including Mr. Suon Prasith, Deputy Director General of Cambodia’s Ministry of Commerce, who shared thoughts on how to best close the skills gap between the current workforce in Cambodia and industry’s growing needs.

Bophal Eng, the first scholar of the program, shared her positive experience of studying in Vietnam. The audience also heard from Bangladeshi alumnus Ramzan Miah, who is working for VF Corporation in Cambodia after earning his Masters in Hong Kong. Each of the scholars inspired those in attendance and served as first-hand examples of the beneficial and successful nature of the program.

Hinrich Foundation Global Trade Scholars are prepared to bridge the skills gap by undertaking an internship with a partner company while completing their studies; they are also guaranteed a job in the industry for at least two years after graduation. The work-integrated learning setup ensures experiential learning, which will allow Hinrich Foundation scholars to stand out and demonstrate their leadership potential upon entering the workforce.

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Participants stayed to inquire about the scholarship after the information session.

A meaningful career and lifelong network

“We not only provide scholarships, but we also offer the experiential education which will lead to life-long career growth,” said Mr. Alex Boome, Program Director of Hinrich Foundation. “Graduates of the scholarship program also become members of the Hinrich Foundation Alumni Association, a prestigious international network of alumni from over 10 different countries. This network is sure to further promote the future of each alumnus.”

Two days prior to the conference, the Hinrich Foundation Alumni Association held a multi-national launch celebration in seven different countries across Asia. The formation of the association ensures the Foundation’s on-going commitment to support and assist its members as they embark on their journey to promote sustainable global trade.

A similar information session will also be held in Yangon, Myanmar on May 28.

About the author – Do Ha Thu

Do Ha Thu

Thu was awarded Hinrich Foundation Global Trade Leader scholarship in 2015 to study MA in International Journalism Studies at Hong Kong Baptist University. She’s currently undergoing the work-integrated learning process, when she will be working for Hinrich Foundation as Education Coordinator for the period of one year in between her study. She will go back to Hong Kong to finish her master’s degree in late December, 2016.