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Class 21 (2022-2024)

Mai Nguyen, Vietnam

Duke University – Master in International Development Policy

Education | Economic Development | Social Innovation | Policy and Management

Mai holds a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University, Japan. Her consuming passion for community, peace and international development was largely influenced by the fact that she grew up in the southern region of Vietnam, which has a high percentage of poverty, educational inequality, and economic instability due to poor governance in the area. With hopes of making positive changes to the community, she runs STEP Forward Exchange, a youth-led organization based in Vietnam which mainly focuses on promoting community development, youth development, and peace development.

Mai is a dedicated and highly accomplished leader in the field of peace and development. As a social work enthusiast and peace practitioner, she has over 8 years of experience with demonstrated interests in research related to peace, community service, advocacy, and urban studies. She also has practical experience in fundraising with a particular focus on building relationships with donors in the field of education and community service. Besides bringing positive impacts for the local communities through various projects in community development, Mai had a successful history of securing funds from the City People’s Committee and increasing private donations to community-based charities. Her career motivation is to contribute to positive changes in communities and education through advocacy, policy influence, and research.

Mai hopes that after taking the MIDP program offered by Duke University through the Rotary Peace Fellowship, she will be more well-positioned and equipped with the relevant skills and solid academic experience to take on challenges in policy-making to reduce educational disparities between the ethnic majority and minorities in Vietnam. As a result, not only inequality in education can be gradually eliminated, but also she will be able to adopt measures for boosting the socio-economic development of the areas and improving people’s living standards.