It is always a cordial catching up with our alumni during academic and networking event. We have met Dr. Kinnaleth VONGCHANH during the Regional Conference on Energy Engineering on September 27-28 in Manila, the Philippines. Dr. Kinnaleth is Laotian lecturer and researcher who has been working in Department of Industrial and Mechanical engineering, Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC) since 2015.

Dr. Kinnaleth received Master’s and PhD degree from Institute of Technology of Bandung (ITB) under AUN/SEED-Net scholarship and received AUN/SEED-Net research fund, Special Research for Alumni (SRA).  In addition, she was also awarded for AUN/SEED-Net mobility grant, Short-term Visit Program in ASEAN (SVAS).

Let us interview her about the opportunity to work in ITC and her career path.

Dr. Kinnaleth, how do you know about the opportunity to work at ITC?

My previous experience working at National University of Laos (NUOL) and the period that I was studying Master’s and Ph.D. programs at ITB brought me opportunities to make the right connections for my career path at ITC. Moreover, I got a chance to visit ITC under SVAS from AUN/SEED-Net.

I used to work as a focal point for international collaboration in Faculty of Engineering, NUOL and research collaboration with ITC lecturers. This network build for a long time and it is very strong, I believe people know each other in the same industry. After finished the job at NUOL, I was accepted to be lecturer-researcher at ITC.

Why you decide to work aboard at ITC, Cambodia?

Moving to work at ITC is mainly about my family reason, my husband is from Cambodia. However, what I would like to focus here is about my passion for being lecturer/researcher. No matter which institution, we are ASEAN. Even though, I stopped working in NUOL, I still love my job because this job is a good contribution to everyone and everywhere. ITC is now the most suitable place for me to do the job that I love and I am keep doing my best for the institution and the network.

Is there any difficulty teaching in different country?

Teaching in different country is challenging things to me because I was facing new working environment, culture of teaching and learning, organization, communication, language, working style, etc. However, those challenges are big step to let me learn and build myself to be stronger to step up to the next level. Today, three years has been passed; I have across major challenges. Therefore, the concerned difficulties were solved by combination of time, experiences, knowledge, learning, commitment and encouragement.

Do you think teaching aboard provide development in your career path?

Teaching abroad provides different opportunity from working in the motherland. I work here as a foreign lecturer/researcher which I can concentrate very much on teaching and research activities, helping on master’s program development, sustaining research activity and expanding collaboration network.

Is there any message or advice for the younger generation?

I would like to deliver few points for younger generation; Degree certificate is a promising of improving our society (ourselves, family, work place, country, etc.); do not let the negative side of society to discourage us. We should keep in mind; (1) be patient, (2) be positive (3) implement our knowledge as much as possible (4) appreciate and no betray ourselves and others (5) publication.

Finally, “Every second is important, harvest every moment effectively and efficiently”