Department of Psychology

Dr Svare Assists With Hoa Sen University in Vietnam

Dr Bruce Svare and Dr Bùi Trân Phượng, President of Hoa Sen University, Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon, Vietnam). Dr Tran Phuong is holding a picture of her grandson who she hopes will someday attend the university that she was inspired to create in 1992.

As a 2014 Fulbright Senior Scholar to Thailand in 2014, Bruce Svare, Professor of Psychology, was also invited to give lectures at a number of universities in Southeast Asian countries outside of Thailand including Vietnam, the Philippines, and Singapore.

One institution that Dr Svare visited was Hoa Sen University in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam. Only 25 years old, Hoa Sen University started small with only a few faculty and less than 50 students. It now has 2 campuses with close to 9,000 students, 380 faculty, and 23 academic majors. The brain child of Dr Bùi Trân Phượng, Hoa Sen University is now considered one of the most prestigious private universities in Vietnam.

On his 2014 visit, Dr Svare learned that Hoa Sen University was about to embark on the development of its own psychology department. Under the direction of Dr Loan Nguyen Thi, who also doubles as a Dominican Catholic nun in Vietnam, Hoa Sen University was seeking guidance in the creation of a department that would include both Eastern and Western psychology curriculum.

Over the course of the next two years, Dr Svare assisted Dr Nguyen Thi with both faculty and curriculum development. Hoa Sen University’s psychology department and curriculum was recently approved by the Vietnamese Education Ministry. The department now has 8 faculty members and a full undergraduate curriculum that represents the major subareas of psychology.

In December of 2016, Dr Svare was an invited guest of Hoa Sen University to observe their 25th anniversary celebration as well as the opening of their newly approved psychology department. He gave a series of public lectures on current trends in contemporary psychology as well as two lectures on faculty development issues in the areas of pedagogical strategies and scholarly publishing.

Dr Svare is a two time Fulbright Senior Scholar to Thailand (2006 and 2014) and is a Fellow in both the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Association for Psychological Science (APS). He has spent the last 10 years helping to develop contemporary psychology in many universities in Thailand and other parts of Southeast Asia.

Return to Newsletter home