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Too many colleges, not enough students

 VietNamNet Bridge – Although the top universities in Viet Nam have a large pool of students from which to choose, other schools face a severe shortage as the number of universities and colleges has mushroomed in recent years.

VietNamNet Bridge – Although the top universities in Viet Nam have a large pool of students from which to choose, other schools face a severe shortage as the number of universities and colleges has mushroomed in recent years.

"We have tried our best to welcome students, but we can only recruit around 50 per cent of our need," Vu Van Hoa, deputy principal of Ha Noi Business and Technology University, was quoted as saying in Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.

Hoa said his university needed an additional 2,000 students for this school year.

However, his school is in decent shape compared to other schools that can only recruit 20- 30 per cent of their capacity. Some of the schools have attracted only 50 student enrollees.

Because students have the right to register for three universities or colleges when they take the entrance exams, tertiary institutions do not know how many students will eventually enroll at their respective schools.

According to figures from the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, in 2014, the Ha Noi-based Printing Technology College had only 37 students, and the Dai Viet College in the northern province of Bac Ninh had 30.

Other schools, such as the Trade, Technology and Economics College in the central province of Thanh Hoa, and the Dien Bien Economics and Technical College in northwestern Dien Bien Province, have also faced enrollment problems. A number of universities also lack students this year.

Last year, Ha Noi-based Dong Do University targeted recruitment of 1,600 students but only 95 enrolled, and Ha Noi-based Nguyen Trai University sought 600 students, but received only 200.

Also last year, Bac Ninh-based Kinh Bac University needed 1,400 but enrolled only 400; Hung Yen-based Chu Van An University had only 80 students; and Vinh Phuc-based Oil & Gas University enrolled 70.

Universities and colleges have resorted to a number of illegal recruitment procedures to attract students.

Many of them have acquired lists of senior high school students, to whom they send notices that they have passed their entrance exams, prior to the exams being held.

Other schools have waited after the exams, and sent students acceptance letters before exam results were posted.

In 2014, Ha Noi-based Huu Nghi Management and Technology University was fined by the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training for accepting students who had not passed the senior high school examination.

In 2013, the university recruited 15 students for business management studies, but five of them had not passed the exam.

Many universities and colleges have fewer than 500 students, according to the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training's Planning and Finance Department.

"The Ministry of Education and Vocational Training has approved the opening of so many universities and colleges without any link to the real demands of society," said Professor Nguyen Minh Thuyet, former deputy chairman of the National Assembly's Committee on Culture, Education, Youth and Children.

"We must follow the education master plan approved by the Prime Minister. The ministries of Planning and Investment as well as Education and Vocational Training must work together to develop a human resource development strategy based on real demand," he added.



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