#essaycontest2018.

Dinh Tien Dat

Phan Boi Chau High School for the Gifted

High School

After a whole summer reeking of experience, good and bad, with Model UN and the world behind it, I have been used to attaching the word “political” to everything complex, multilateral, and ingenuine. Politics seems detached, but it is everywhere; for it is a game of power, and whoever has not yearned for superiority in life must be either a liar or an anomaly. Sometimes you may think that the mechanism whereby things work is just there because it is thus from the start, but you may never know that everything has all been planned subtly without your recognition.

In Vietnam, the political structure is akin to that of China: one-party (multi-party on paper) Communist system. However, there is one unique characteristic that is unlike that of any systems on Earth, even its second-world allies: its undergraduate educational structure. For the U.S, high school graduates go to colleges or universities like Yale, Princeton, or Williams, Swarthmore; for Russia, Moskva, and Saint Petersburg, for example. Universities offer an amalgamation of majors and minors, ranging from humanities to natural sciences. We can even enter our college journey with a view to majoring in Arts, yet graduating as a Computer Scientist.

Vietnamese educational system is different. Entrance into any universities requires taking three or more tests on different subjects, the total score of which qualifies each hopeful for a number of universities. But there are none like Yale or Moskva. The schools are specialized in terms of what they offer as a major: there is a Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, a Hanoi Law University, and a Foreign Trade University, for example. You can only register for one major from the beginning of the first year, and even harder, there is a limit to how many students eligible for any major. Completion of each and every course, determined in advance by professors of the school, will allow you to graduate, topped off with a dissertation related to your major.

Another surprising factor is that let you be a scientist, a film director, or a banking specialist, several courses on Marxist-Leninist ideology are mandatory. You are expected to memorize how communism originates, how class-consciousness can only come from revolutions, and how unemployment is a word coined by the pessimism and propaganda of ill-hearted capitalists, even if you are a mathematician for the rest of your life.

My reactions to this revelation come in three stages: bewilderment, disgust, and indignation. I was perplexed by the meaning of all these deeds. Vietnamese students have been studying more than ten subjects throughout their 12-year secondary education. It has been a long ride, filled with obstacles, most of which are unnecessarily there. If I am bound an electrician, how needed my knowledge of post-modern literature can be! If the typical Asian mindset is that everyone should be a philosopher at heart, then no wonder we have been so stagnated in comparison with our Western counterparts. We have the supplies, but the process is elongated to a jeopardizing extent.

I find American liberalism and progressivity particularly interesting. We are humans, and we are and should be allowed to sow our wild oats. One might think one is born to be a chemical engineer, but when such enthusiasm comes from mere self-interest: we are indeed better at diplomacy, at politics, or at business, we are allowed to alter. Liberalism has been an increasing trend, and most universities now offer more than just classes related to our intended major. Vietnam has witnessed it, Vietnam has seen how it could work. Why has Vietnam not acted yet?

Is bureaucracy stepping in once again, I wonder.

The moment this thought sparked, my bafflement turned unease. Of course, it is the same, our government’s conserved hesitation. Our experiments with pedagogy and education have shown a certain level of uncertainty of our policy-makers. We have a national pride, but once again we are allowing that national pride to interfere so much with our progress.

We are proud, as a nation, of our leftist constitution, and our self-proclaimed righteous Socialist front. Signs of Uncle Ho pop up everywhere in our urban landscape. My disgust has transformed into indignation, of how the government is propagandizing so blatantly that it forces us to learn the things we do not want and that it strives so badly to remain alive as a self-proclaimed righteous Socialist front. We understand that our ideology has been bad-mouthed so much, that it is yet to be stable with potholes to cover on the road we tread. But this kind of demagogue enrages my uncorrupted soul.

Every now and then I contemplate upon our attempts at revolutionizing our recognizedly bad educational system. There are things that we need to ameliorate, but our money is constantly put in the wrong place. The more I ponder, the more upset I become, the deeper I empathize with what our Communist preachers have to face with.

Why is empathy? I love Marx and Lenin, I love how we should be better off a liberal democracy. But the struggle takes us too much time, and Vietnam is doing so much just for demagogic purposes.

It takes me long just to realize how immature I have been to say that we have yet to be successful with socialist ideology. We live in an equal word built on mutual responsibility and general allocation of work. We cannot let free will determine the society so much, for we must have a common ideal. Tha

After a whole summer reeking of experience, good and bad, with Model UN and the world behind it, I have been used to attaching the word “political” to everything complex, multilateral, and ingenuine. Politics seems detached, but it is everywhere; for it is a game of power, and whoever has not yearned for superiority in life must be either a liar or an anomaly. Sometimes you may think that the mechanism whereby things work is just there because it is thus from the start, but you may never know that everything has all been planned subtly without your recognition.

In Vietnam, the political structure is akin to that of China: one-party (multi-party on paper) Communist system. However, there is one unique characteristic that is unlike that of any systems on Earth, even its second-world allies: its undergraduate educational structure. For the U.S, high school graduates go to colleges or universities like Yale, Princeton, or Williams, Swarthmore; for Russia, Moskva, and Saint Petersburg, for example. Universities offer an amalgamation of majors and minors, ranging from humanities to natural sciences. We can even enter our college journey with a view to majoring in Arts, yet graduating as a Computer Scientist.

Vietnamese educational system is different. Entrance into any universities requires taking three or more tests on different subjects, the total score of which qualifies each hopeful for a number of universities. But there are none like Yale or Moskva. The schools are specialized in terms of what they offer as a major: there is a Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, a Hanoi Law University, and a Foreign Trade University, for example. You can only register for one major from the beginning of the first year, and even harder, there is a limit to how many students eligible for any major. Completion of each and every course, determined in advance by professors of the school, will allow you to graduate, topped off with a dissertation related to your major.

Another surprising factor is that let you be a scientist, a film director, or a banking specialist, several courses on Marxist-Leninist ideology are mandatory. You are expected to memorize how communism originates, how class-consciousness can only come from revolutions, and how unemployment is a word coined by the pessimism and propaganda of ill-hearted capitalists, even if you are a mathematician for the rest of your life.

My reactions to this revelation come in three stages: bewilderment, disgust, and indignation. I was perplexed by the meaning of all these deeds. Vietnamese students have been studying more than ten subjects throughout their 12-year secondary education. It has been a long ride, filled with obstacles, most of which are unnecessarily there. If I am bound an electrician, how needed my knowledge of post-modern literature can be! If the typical Asian mindset is that everyone should be a philosopher at heart, then no wonder we have been so stagnated in comparison with our Western counterparts. We have the supplies, but the process is elongated to a jeopardizing extent.

I find American liberalism and progressivity particularly interesting. We are humans, and we are and should be allowed to sow our wild oats. One might think one is born to be a chemical engineer, but when such enthusiasm comes from mere self-interest: we are indeed better at diplomacy, at politics, or at business, we are allowed to alter. Liberalism has been an increasing trend, and most universities now offer more than just classes related to our intended major. Vietnam has witnessed it, Vietnam has seen how it could work. Why has Vietnam not acted yet?

Is bureaucracy stepping in once again, I wonder.

The moment this thought sparked, my bafflement turned unease. Of course, it is the same, our government’s conserved hesitation. Our experiments with pedagogy and education have shown a certain level of uncertainty of our policy-makers. We have a national pride, but once again we are allowing that national pride to interfere so much with our progress.

We are proud, as a nation, of our leftist constitution, and our self-proclaimed righteous Socialist front. Signs of Uncle Ho pop up everywhere in our urban landscape. My disgust has transformed into indignation, of how the government is propagandizing so blatantly that it forces us to learn the things we do not want and that it strives so badly to remain alive as a self-proclaimed righteous Socialist front. We understand that our ideology has been bad-mouthed so much, that it is yet to be stable with potholes to cover on the road we tread. But this kind of demagogue enrages my uncorrupted soul.

Every now and then I contemplate upon our attempts at revolutionizing our transparently bad educational system. There are things that we need to ameliorate, but our money is constantly put in the wrong place. The more I ponder, the more upset I become, the deeper I empathize with what our Communist preachers have to face with.

Why is empathy? I love Marx and Lenin, I love how we should be better off a liberal democracy. But the struggle takes us too much time, and Vietnam is doing so much just for demagogic purposes.

It takes me long just to realize how immature I have been to say that we have yet to be successful with socialist ideology. We live in an equal word built on mutual responsibility and general allocation of work. We cannot let free will determine the society so much, for we must have a common ideal. That is how universities only accept a limited number of students in each major because work must be proportionately distributed among all denizens. Through that limitations, we are especially allotted a work, an occupation, a task. Putting a lot on our shoulders in secondary schools gives us the chance to experience with every field. It signifies how we should not fiddle with a university education, that through only practicality and determination can we achieve success, or at least, societal success.

I was immature to blame the whole thing on the political front. They have been so good unilaterally pervading the society and stealthily invading our lives that we function as a model socialist society. We are not off track with the world, because we are on track with the course of history, that is the course towards the utopia of communism where everyone lives for the benefits of others and the whole.

Politics and philosophy are not merely fields of study. They have a capacity to penetrate every single life, let it be a macroscopic impact or microscopic impact. With good politics and good philosophy, we are maneuvered on our own path. Vietnamese governments are doing the right thing not to taint the path with so many different ideologies, for a strong cause remains pure at its heart.

t is how universities only accept a limited number of students in each major because work must be proportionately distributed among all denizens. Through that limitations, we are especially allotted a work, an occupation, a task. Putting a lot on our shoulders in secondary schools gives us the chance to experience with every field. It signifies how we should not fiddle with a university education, that through only practicality and determination can we achieve success, or at least, societal success.

I was immature to blame the whole thing on the political front. They have been so good unilaterally pervading the society and stealthily invading our lives that we function as a model socialist society. We are not off track with the world, because we are on track with the course of history, that is the course towards the utopia of communism where everyone lives for the benefits of others and the whole.

Politics and philosophy are not merely fields of study. They have a capacity to penetrate every single life, let it be a macroscopic impact or microscopic impact. With good politics and good philosophy, we are maneuvered on our own path. Vietnamese governments are doing the right thing not to taint the path with so many different ideologies, for a strong cause remains pure at its heart.

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