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BIS HCMC Ambassadors to the United Nations 2018

03 May 2018

Once again Nord Anglia Education students have been given the unique opportunity to travel to the United Nations Headquarters in New York to attend the High Level Political Forum and engage in a Global MUN debate with 3 ambitious students representing the British International School, Ho Chi Minh City.

  • Sustainable Goals, UNICEF, UN, NAE, and British International School, HCMC

Last year Lisa Hagens and Rosa Heuveling Van Beek became our first BIS HCMC Ambassadors to the United Nations. They embarked upon the opportunity of a lifetime by travelling to the United Nations headquarters in New York, and worked alongside students from Nord Anglia Education schools around the world on a global action plan towards sustainability. Lisa was one of 8 students chosen to present at the High Level Political Forum, an experience that we are sure she will remember forever.

BIS HCMC Ambassadors to the United Nations

This role of UN ambassador has grown from the exciting collaboration between Nord Anglia Education and UNICEF on the annual Global Challenge, where NAE schools are tasked with taking action towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. This year we have been focusing on Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, and Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production, and our 2018 BIS HCMC Ambassadors have the opportunity to present the work that we are doing in school and in our local community to country representatives at the High Level Political Forum in New York in July.

On Thursday 15th March 2018 we launched our search for our 2018 BIS HCMC Ambassadors. To become an Ambassador, students must have strong communication, diplomacy, and debating skills, and demonstrate significant contributions to the community, MUN, or global issues groups here at BIS HCMC. Our ambassadors should be excellent role models who embody our school values and ethos, as well as outstanding leaders. These students will represent the entire BIS HCMC community so we have gone through a rigorous process in order to make our selection.

Students initially submitted an application showing how they meet the qualities described above, alongside a video telling us what makes them the BIS HCMC Ambassador to the United Nations. From these entries, 5 very capable students were shortlisted and took part in both a group discussion task around questions such as “To what extent do we, as an international school, have a positive or negative impact on our local and national community?” and “What are the barriers faced by Vietnam in achieving the SDGs by 2030?”, and an intensive interview with Ms Amy Murphy, Deputy Head Curriculum and Learning, Ms Lauren Binnington, Global Campus Lead and Mr Daniel Gamwell, MUN Coordinator.

From this process we have selected three incredible students as our BIS HCMC Ambassadors and we are already very proud of them. These students are Doan Nguyen (Year 12), Vy Nguyen (Year 11) and Ashley Lee (Year 10). Carry on reading to find out more about each of our ambassadors…

Doan Nguyen, Year 12


How have you shown significant commitment to community, MUN, or global issues?

I joined MUN because I was inspired by the SDGs when they were introduced in 2015. I remember wanting the opportunity to further discuss issues (such as poverty and quality of education) addressed by the goals, which sprouted my interest in debating. Since then, I have attended 10 MUN conferences, which has increased my awareness of current affairs, making me even more committed to help solve problems that our world is currently facing. I also founded a new MUN conference, called MUN SG, along with some students from public and international schools. The conference is scheduled to take place around June and important issues like climate change and threats to global security will be debated on.

Also, I am currently a member of our school’s Community Committee, where I cooperate with others to organise things like the Tet shoe box collection and the Go Vap orphanage visits. Previously, I was the treasurer of a community group called The Giving Tree, where I regularly visited children at Maison Chance schools with the aim of transferring my happiness to them – I wanted to provide them with love and care.

How have you demonstrated that you embody the BIS HCMC ethos and values?

I am currently one of our school’s prefects and one of my responsibilities as a prefect is to fully embody the BIS HCMC values that are written on our Aide Memoire. I have demonstrated care by being an academic mentor for a Year 10 student, where I try my best to give my mentee support and make her feel confident in her own capabilities. Furthermore, I value enquiry, and as a curious person, I always love to expand my knowledge outside of what is taught in school. For example, I am an Economics student who does not stop at simply learning about markets and firms through theory, but I have started my own business to examine how economic concepts actually work in real life. Throughout the process of operating my business, I have come across many problems, such as having to suddenly switch suppliers. However, I was able to persevere; my positive attitude and determination drove me forward as I never gave up.

I also show perseverance in other aspects of my life, for example in my personal hobbies where I have been playing piano for 12 years. Having studied in international schools ever since I was 5 years old, I have come across an array of people from many different nations. Therefore, I treat everyone with utmost respect, regardless of their background.

Vy Nguyen, Year 11


How have you shown significant commitment to community, MUN, or global issues?

I have pledged my commitment through my active contribution towards the betterment of the local community. As a member of the Noble Swimming Club at BIS, the Christina Noble Children’s Foundation is of great significance to me; my long term commitment to the foundation has helped me become aware of my local community, especially the issue of child poverty in Vietnam. In December, I also had the chance to raise funds for CNCF which went towards improvements in education and healthcare for these children, which overlaps with UN SDGs 3 and 4. Since joining MUN in Year 9, not only have I developed a range of skills, but I have become more aware of the crises that have impeded development; my awareness and fascination for global issues have grown with every conference that I have attended. My dedication has helped me become a global citizen, as it has encouraged me to engage myself in issues concerning us as an international community. Additionally, I assisted in organising a TEDxYouth event that allowed specialists and students to voice their views and promote issues such as sustainable development by addressing problems in the environment as well as medicine.

How have you demonstrated that you embody the BIS HCMC ethos and values?

BIS HCMC has in place a set of core values that underpin the vision of the school, where our ethos and values are shown on the Aide Memoire. Those six values are what define us as global citizens. For the entirety of my academic life, I have been dedicated to working with other students, as shown through my participation in school events: my past experience in the Student Council and as a House Captain has helped me understand and form relationships with my peers. In recent years, I have continued to embody the school ethos by encouraging other students to do the same by heartening my peers taking part in house events, for example. As a student with an enquiring mind, my dedication to my academics and to MUN have shaped my role as a global citizen. My passion for learning is evident through my ability to reflect, enquire and persevere.

Ashley Lee, Year 10


How have you shown significant commitment to community, MUN, or global issues?

I joined MUN in Year 8 and have participated in many conferences such as SEOMUN or SAIMUN. Before these conferences, I always do sufficient research that allows me to participate actively in the debates. During these conferences, I contribute many clauses that would help solve these problems and accept the feedback that is given by others in order to make the clause better. In the debates, I actively participate in making the resolutions better and many of the resolutions in my committee have always passed with the improvements made. During club sessions, I help newer delegates with the dissection of the resolution and on how to do efficient research using my experience.

How have you demonstrated that you embody the BIS HCMC ethos and values?

I enjoy and respect what we learn in class and although there are a lot of things I don’t understand at first, such as Computer Science, I try my best and ask teachers separately in order to understand. I contribute actively in group projects and discussions and make sure all my work is up to standard. I respect the uniform policy and follow it. I also help out younger students when they ask me to help with their school work. When things don’t go too well for me (such as test scores) I don’t give up and instead try harder to do it better next time.

BIS HCMC embodies the SDGs

We have been incredibly impressed with the amount of progress taking place towards a more sustainable BIS HCMC community at school, and every student who has been involved in making those changes. This includes projects in place by the Global Goals and Greenr Minds Clubs such as Clean-Up Vietnam, the Uniform Upcycling project, the E-Waste recycling initiative, the recycling bin competition and your Pledge to Change videos, amongst many other student-led projects.

Well done to everyone who has taken part in the Global Challenge this year so far and it’s now over to Doan, Vy and Ashley to share our work with UNICEF representatives at the New York Summit in July. Congratulations girls! We can’t wait to hear more about your trip in the Summer.

Lauren Binnington, Assistant Head Teacher Secondary and Global Campus Lead

#SustainableBIS #NAEUNICEF

Global Goals 11 and 12 BISHCMC