Student Wins Scholarship

Student Wins Scholarship to Pursue Master’s Degree in China

BY Sok Lak (UC Student)


To seek a better education and achieve her goal of becoming a good teacher in Cambodia, female student Long Geklourng decided to apply for a scholarship to study in China through the annual Chinese Government Scholarship Program. She was recently informed that she won the full scholarship, allowing her to pursue her Master’s of Education in Curriculum and Pedagogy in China. The scholarship covers full tuition, room and board, travel expenses, and a small living stipend.

Originally from Kandal province, Geklourng is a student majoring in Finance and Banking at the University of Cambodia (UC), and also completed her Bachelor’s degree in Education in Teaching English as a Second Language from the Institute of Foreign Languages (IFL). She will depart for China in September to start the two-year program and expects to come back to Cambodia in July 2013.

"I felt happy and excited when I successfully won the scholarship to China. . .[because it is] considered to be one of the rising super powers in the world," Geklourng said.

She added that having an opportunity to study in China will provide her with new knowledge and experiences, especially new ideas on how to help develop Cambodia in the future.

Through the Master’s program, she hopes to gain more extensive knowledge about how to design effective curriculum that serves students’ interests and the needs of Cambodia. She plans to share the knowledge and skills she will gain from this study abroad opportunity with students in Cambodia because she believes that students are significant to the development of the country.

"I expect to improve my teaching ability [and gain] good experience. . .[so I can help]. . .my family and my nation be better and better," she stated.

She has committed to learning as much as she can during her study abroad experience, but she also recognizes that studying overseas will not be an easy task. It will require her to focus on her studies, conduct research, strengthen her communication skills, and take care of her health.

"People will always face many unexpected obstacles with everything they do, but the most important thing is to find good solutions to the problems and never let the obstacles [hinder] you," she said.

She hopes that other Cambodian students pursue opportunities like this. As a successful scholarship recipient, her advice to students is to set clear goals in life and to pursue them. This is an important factor for achieving success, she said. She also advises students to never be afraid of failure, and to see the opportunity in difficulty rather than seeing the difficulty in opportunity. Finally, she believes that being confident in oneself and being calm during problems are both important for success.

Geklourng said she experienced some difficulty when applying for the foreign scholarship because it was her first time completing a detailed application.

To win this scholarship, students had to go through several steps. First, students needed to fill out the application form given by the scholarship department. Second, students needed to take an examination, which focused on English and general knowledge. After successfully completing this stage, students were then required to submit an application form, two letters of recommendation, a study plan, and supporting documentation, including copies of their Bachelor’s degree certificates. Qualifying students were invited to interview for the scholarship, and had to complete a physical health examination and submit the results to the Chinese Embassy in Phnom Penh.

Every year, the Chinese Embassy in Phnom Penh sponsors Cambodian students to pursue graduate studies in China through the Chinese Government Scholarship Program. This year, 45 Cambodian students were recipients of this scholarship and, currently, a total of 130 Cambodian students are now in China pursuing their graduate degrees. To date, over 450 Cambodian students have earned graduate degrees in China through this program.