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Blind highschoolers join meaningful cooking competition in Vietnam

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The Ability Fund and the Vietnam Blind Association have recently co-sponsored a unique contest named ‘Who is the Masterchef,’ in which blind students from high schools in Hanoi competed in cooking with a hope to contribute their efforts to their families and the society.

The competition is part of a two-week project which was initiated by a group of four blind students in Vietnam’s capital city, offering cooking skill training classes to visually-impaired students from different high schools and continuing education centers in the region.

These training classes are designed to equip the visually challenged people with basic skills, including cooking, in the hope of supporting their families and the community, said deputy project coordinator Vu Hai Anh.

Luong Tuan Cuong, a young participant, excitedly shared that he knew how to choose food by pressing and ‘smelling’ with his hands, plus checking the different levels for cooking meat during the training classes. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

Luong Tuan Cuong, a young participant, excitedly shared that he knew how to choose food by pressing and ‘smelling’ with his hands, plus checking the different levels for cooking meat during the training classes. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

“Every single person from the blind community shares a wish of not only taking care of themselves but also building up their confidence,” Anh said.

“And the project itself has done a pretty good job for that.”

To wrap up the training classes, the cooking competition was organized to showcase students’ self-made dishes, spotlighting their extraordinary ability and constant effort during the course.

The organizers expressed their happiness when delivering the much-needed message of living happily to the blind community in particular, and to people with disabilities in general.

The image of the blind chefs has won the hearts of the organizers, prompting them to open up more cooking classes and competitions, where the blind can engage in a practical environment and society.

A blind participant is checking whether the rice balls have floated or cooked by placing a spoon and stirring them gently. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

A blind participant is pictured checking rice balls by placing a spoon and stirring them gently. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

Luong Tuan Cuong, a senior from Nguyen Van To Education and Training Center in Hanoi, confidently shared his kitchen skills and ability in using the utensils despite the Vietnamese’s traditional unwillingness to let the blind use sharp cutlery due to the potential risk of cutting themselves.

“By attending the classes, I prepared myself with certain knowledge in buying food, choosing ingredients, and preparing meals,” Cuong said.

Nguyen Thi Diem, a high school student, is learning how to slice meat, which is considered as a super difficult skill since the sharp utensils present a danger of cutting the blind. Besides, the ingredients are arranged in order, so that the unsighted cook can locate exactly where different ingredients are. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

Nguyen Thi Diem, a high school student, learns how to slice meat, which is considered a super difficult skill since the sharp utensils present a danger of cutting the blind. Besides, the ingredients are arranged in order so that the visually-impaired cook can locate exactly where different ingredients are. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

“Cooking for the visually impaired is way more difficult than normal people as they can only touch and feel with their bare hands instead of visualizing with their eyes,” the organizers said.

“Simple cooking practices such as boiling or peeling quail eggs can even pose difficulties for them.

“It often takes a normal person 30 minutes to cook a simple savory dish, while these young people spend up to two and a half hours making a perfect dish.

“We see the hindrances presented to the disabled.”

This photo shows how the visually impaired use their hands as a powerful weapon in kneading the dough into floating rice balls, which have the Vietnamese name banh troi nuoc. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

This photo shows how the visually impaired use their hands as a powerful tool in kneading the dough into floating rice balls, or ‘banh troi nuoc’ in Vietnamese. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

Anh, the deputy project coordinator, additionally shared that the visually impaired now can get out of their box when their lives are no longer confined to toothpick-making or lathering businesses as one might see a few years ago.

“Their livelihoods have dramatically changed when they now can access various working opportunities, starting from their belief and respect for small things like cooking,” he said.

Thit kho (Vietnamese braised pork) cooked by the blind students welcomes tasters with its beautiful presentation. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

‘Thit kho’ (Vietnamese braised pork) cooked by blind students welcomes tasters with its beautiful presentation. Photo: Vinh Ha / Tuoi Tre

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/education/20211116/blind-highschoolers-join-meaningful-cooking-competition-in-vietnam/64177.html

Education

Vietnam places 1st at Microsoft Office Specialist Word Championship

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Vietnam has finished first at the 2022 Microsoft Office Specialist Word Championship, winning two gold medals, one silver, and one bronze.

The four faces who brought glory to Vietnam at the world’s largest MSO playground include Bui Cong Minh from Nguyen Tat Thanh Middle and High School in Hanoi, who received a gold medal in Microsoft PowerPoint 2016; Nguyen Duy Phong from Hanoi University of Science and Technology, who won a gold medal in Microsoft Excel 365 Apps and Office 2019; Nguyen Trong Khai from University of Science and Technology of Hanoi, who bagged a silver medal in Microsoft Word 365 Apps and Office 2019; and Dao Ngoc Tung Chi from Foreign Trade University in Hanoi, who took home a bronze medal in Microsoft Word 2016.

Unable to hide his emotions at the awards ceremony, Minh felt like “exploding,” shaking in happiness when his name was mentioned.

He is also the youngest competitor who has ever clinched a gold medal in the history of Vietnam’s participation in the contest.

Phong was also enthusiastic to share his happiness on achieving the highest degree of awards, bringing glory to his home country.

Vietnam received the most awards from this year’s Microsoft Office Specialist Word Championship edition, said Doan Hong Nam, president of IIG Vietnam, chief of the national organizing committee and head of the Vietnamese team.

This is also the first time in 13 years of competing at the championship that the Vietnamese team has reached the top spot.

The Microsoft Office Specialist Word Championship is an international playground for students, aged 13-22, on a global scale to find and glorify talents in Microsoft Office usage.

Its 2022 edition took place in Anaheim, California from July 24 to 27

Vietnam’s medal tally at all MOSWC iterations has added up to four gold medals, three silvers, and 10 bronzes.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/education/20220731/vietnam-places-1st-at-microsoft-office-specialist-word-championship/68378.html

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Vietnam launches Simons Astrophysics Group

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The launch of an astrophysics group in Vietnam funded by the U.S.-based Simons Foundation was announced during two international workshops on astrophysics in Quy Nhon City of the south-central Vietnamese province of Binh Dinh on Monday.

Rencontres du Vietnam (Meeting Vietnam) convened the two workshops, the ‘Golden Universe: Nuclear Astrophysics and Cosmic Rays in the Multimessenger Era’ and the ‘2022 SAGI Astrophysics Workshop on New Frontiers of Astrophysics in the Golden Era of Dust Polarimetry,’ at the International Center for Interdisciplinary Science and Education (ICISE).

The event gathered more than 30 Vietnamese and foreign scientists from France, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Israel, Japan, South Korea, and Malaysia; as well as around 50 physics students from three specialized high schools in Binh Dinh and the neighboring province of Phu Yen.

Prof. Tran Thanh Van delivers a remark at the opening of two international workshops on astrophysics in Quy Nhon City, Binh Dinh Province, Vietnam, July 25, 2022. Photo: Lam Thien / Tuoi Tre

Prof. Tran Thanh Van delivers a remark at the opening of two international workshops on astrophysics in Quy Nhon City, Binh Dinh Province, Vietnam, July 25, 2022. Photo: Lam Thien / Tuoi Tre

During the events, Dr. Nguyen Trong Hien, a Vietnamese-American astrophysicist working for NASA, announced the launch of the Simons Astrophysics Group at ICISE (SAGI), the first of its kind in Vietnam.

The group, including many Vietnamese experts working overseas, is funded by the U.S.-based Simons Foundation, one of the largest charitable organizations in the States making grants in mathematics and physical sciences, life sciences, autism research, and education and outreach.

“SAGI will organize seminars and summer schools, cooperate [with other organizations] in analyzing scientific data, and support young scientists in the country,” Dr. Hien said.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/education/20220726/vietnam-launches-simons-astrophysics-group/68296.html

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Vietnam’s oldest candidate graduates from high school at 82

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An 82-year-old man from Hanoi, the oldest candidate in Vietnam’s 2022 national high school graduation exam, officially passed the test with a total score of 22.35, as per the results announced on Sunday. 

The Vocational and Continuing Education Center in Thanh Xuan District, Hanoi, the school Nguyen Huy Ky attended before the exam, confirmed his results later on the same day.

Ky, 82, got 4.75 points out of 10 in literature, 3.6 points in math, 7.5 points in history, and 6.5 points in geography to pass the graduation exam and is now a high school graduate.

He was given 0.25 priority points as a candidate who is 35 years or older, as of the date of the high school graduation exam.

As a continuing education student with a grade-A computer certificate or higher, he also got an additional one point.

Nguyen Huy Ky, 82, is pictured during the 2022 national high school graduation exam at Thanh Xuan Middle School in Thanh Xuan District, Hanoi. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre

Nguyen Huy Ky, 82, is pictured during the 2022 national high school graduation exam at Thanh Xuan Middle School in Thanh Xuan District, Hanoi. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre

During the national high school graduation exam that took place at the beginning of this month, at the exam site of Thanh Xuan Middle School in the namesake district, Ky drew attention as the oldest candidate in the country still pursuing a high school diploma at the age of over 80.

At that time, Ky told a Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reporter that the reason for his pursuit is to return to the profession of Oriental medicine, which requires him to attend a medical school, and a high school diploma is a must for admission to the medical school.

In Vietnam, the national high school graduation exam, considered one of the most important events in the life of every school student, is organized in July every year for 12th graders and independent candidates. 

The exam results are used for both high school graduation and enrollment in universities and junior colleges.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/education/20220725/vietnams-oldest-candidate-graduates-from-high-school-at-82/68278.html

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