2020 is a wonderful and amazing year to me. I am lucky enough to be granted a scholarship to go to Malaysia on a culture exchange program. I feel so delighted and fortunate to be able to have this opportunity.
For such a multicultural program, different religions do exist. I am a non-religious person. That is why it is so exciting to learn more about other religions. I have gained a wide range of knowledge about Islam, Christian, and the Catholic religion. Before meeting Islam girls, I do think that they are disregarded and underestimated in society. However, this journey changes my mind forever. My friends tell me that their hair is their crown, no one will be allowed to see it and they are proud to wear Hijab. In their community, gender inequality does exist but it does not affect themselves to become better. Hearing all these things makes me eye-opening. I also take the challenge of wearing Hijab for one day. It is really wonderful 😊
It is great to explore Kuala Lumpur and other cities. I have visited almost all the places of interest in Kuala Lumpur such as Tien Hou pagoda, Twin Tower, and National Mosque. I also go to Melaka to enjoy the view of the beach, museums and traditional houses. It can be seen that Asian culture exists in Malaysia as well. Houses of Malaysian people in the past resemble those of Viet people in the Museum of Ethology in Hanoi I have been to. Malaysian food is different from Vietnamese food but there are still some similarities. For example, rice is a staple food. Malaysians can not live without rice and the Vietnamese can’t, either. In both cuisines, there are a variety of spices, which makes the flavor better.
The trip also provides me with much knowledge in terms of multiculturalism in ASEAN. With the instruction from professors during the course, I develop a better understanding of colonies, cultural differences, and multicultural societies. Each country in ASEAN has its strategies. All the countries try to integrate themselves into ASEAN and though there are still some obstacles, they can achieve their ultimate goal through their continuous efforts.
The trip also provides me with much knowledge in terms of multiculturalism in ASEAN. With the instruction from professors during the course, I develop a better understanding of colonies, cultural differences, and multicultural societies. Each country in ASEAN has its strategies. All the countries try to integrate themselves into ASEAN and though there are still some obstacles, they can achieve their ultimate goal through their continuous efforts. Malaysia is a typical example of a multicultural community. In this nation, the government categorizes citizens into MCIO, which is Malaysian, Chinese, Indian, and Other. The community, therefore, is a mixture of people. They manage to live peacefully with each other, which is a great cooperation. During my time in Malaysia, my friends say that I am witnessing one of the most noticeable and exciting events of Malaysia because its Prime Minister resigns at that time. I have learned a lot thanks to dedicated professors and peers.
The journey also exceeds my expectations. After this, I can manage to prepare myself for foreign trips, make friends with foreigners, deal with obstacles, and develop necessary skills. This opportunity drives me to step out of my comfort zone. I am no longer afraid of difficulties or new experiences. It is also a good proof for many girls surrounding me that women can do what men do. Opportunities are not limited to anyone because we are the same. I have made many villagers change their attitudes about young girls, which makes me feel so honored. My parents are worried about their little daughter at first but I prove myself independent and able to tackle things single-handed. They take pride in me and I am proud to be their daughter.
This occasion assists my growth so much that I am so grateful for it. I have met wonderful friends, acquired essential skills, and experiences exotic activities. It has been my dream for a long time. Hence, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to everyone in the program. Thank all of you for appearing in my life. Thank Kyushu University, Malaya University, and other organizations. It is you that I can have this golden chance. Malaysia, see you soon!
Thank you AsTW 2020 ❤
NGUYEN Thi Thuy from Vietnam