I and dad, and they spoke the languages

I was born and brought up in Vietnam, a country which has
an advanced culture deeply imbued with national identity and traditions. During
primary school period, I only had a vague notion of what the diverse community
was. I always felt excited whenever I came across a foreigner; catching sight
of foreigners at that time was something too rare for me. As an imaginative
little kid, I used to think that they came from another planet with
supernatural power to visit “my” Earth by their invisible planes. Their hair’s
colors were strange: some were red, some were blonde; they were also much
taller than my mom and dad, and they spoke the languages that I had never heard
before.”Who are they?” – I asked my mom. “They are our friends from different
countries” – She smiled. That answer, of course, did not satisfy my curiosity
at all. I started to search for more information on my table computer then. To
my surprise, I found out that there were more than 6 billion people living on
the same planet, and I was only a tiny piece in this vast world.

In grade 6, I was so thankful for being chosen to
participate in a summer camp organized by Singaporean teachers due to my high
academic achievements. That was also my first time meeting so many foreigners
like that.They talked about their environmentally friendly country with very
strict laws, guided us how to protect our surroundings by some fun activities
and introduced their history by videos. Unfortunately, to be honest, my English
was not so good at that time: I could merely understand what they said yet
failing to respond. Such languages barrier hindered me from asking questions
when I wanted to know more deeply about their multi-community culture, which I
found most interested in. That was when I realized how crucial English was in
this globalized era. I decided to invest more time on polishing my English
then; as expected, I became a student of Foreign Language Specialised School 4
years later.

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I have made a 180-degree change in my life when I entered
high school. I used to be a girl who always buried my nose in studying without
having any interest in this world. Despite getting an expected mark, I felt no
sense of happiness. That night, I was deep in thought about who I truly wanted
to be in the future. I realized that I had always retreated into my shell,
denying to share with others. This was totally not the image I wanted to see
myself as in the future. “I must change” – I thought. Soon after my
realization, I took the very first action as a volunteer of CNN Shine – a
community club at my school, in which I had met and taken care of both physically
and mentally handicapped children at Hope Centre. I noticed that despite them
being disabled, their eyes were filled with glimmers of hope when they could
finally manage to write a character or shape a colorful clay animal. Witnessing
their senses of achievements was the biggest blessing to my heart so far.
Happiness turned out not to be a mile away from what I expected, it was the
most easily found thing on Earth yet had I never noticed before. Mark Twain once
said: “Life
becomes harder for us when we live for others, but it also becomes richer and
happier”. I want to be truly alive, not just to exist.I want to
expand my contribution, not just in-school level, national level but
international level. This is why I also care about a more globally concerned
issue – environment, which is seriously damaged and adversely affects our
life’s quality to some extent. We teamed up randomly in a Leadership summer
camp organized by Waterwise Vietnam with the same objective which is to eliminate
the uncontrolled waste dumped into the streets by cleaning and turning them
into hanging gardens. All hardships of my first time being a leader, including managerial
effectiveness, were completely gone when residents in those streets, who were
annoyed by the waste everyday, smiled happily and gave many thanks to us. Also,
by doing this project, I gained how to familiarize myself with challenges and
sharpened my problem-solving skill, which is required in all citizens living in
this fast-changing world.

I am a student speacialized in Chiness in Foreign
Language Specialized School, where I can not only appreciate Vietnamese
particularities but also explore new cultures by socializing with
friends from different classes: I love French, the language of romance; I love
Russia with many immortal love songs and amazing folk dances; I love the
yin-yang philosophy in Chinese cuisine, and I love many antique yet massive
architectures of Western countries. I luckily got a chance to visit Thailand
once, and what amazed me the most was their “Wai” greeting which shows respect
and gratitude for other people. With my willingness and excitment to discover
any culture, I confidently believe that The Hague University of Applied
Sciences would be my best choice if I have a chance to become a part of its
multicultural beehive. I believe that my communication skill gained from
various projects and experience in my
high school would allow me to integrate myself into the multinational
environment of The Hague. I fell for this school from the first time I read
about it.  I love how the lessons
delivered practically through guiding students to build their own projects, and
I also love the course called Global
Citizenship?, which, to the best of my knowledge, is time for students
coming from different nations grasp deeper understanding of others’ cultures so
as to have better team-work performance.  

Becoming a member of multicultural society will bring me
both opportunities and challenges. I am ready to embark on a new journey, a
journey to a new country where I will be an unique music note representing the
country of Vietnam and contributing to the symphony of the world. The Hague
University of Applied Sciences is going to be my next move and Holland
scholarship would be a perfect road to attain my goals.