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Alumni E-News Autumn 2016
Posted 14/12/2016 09:00AM
UNIS Alumni        
  ALumni E-News



7th Annual Alumni Reunion in London, the search for a new Head of School, UN Day live-streamed and a new School playground... that is just some of the news that you have missed!

So grab a coffee and let us bring you up to speed with everything at UNIS Hanoi and the latest news from your fellow UNIS Hanoi alumni and their adventures in the world!

Plus we need your help! Send us your photos from your school days as we plan a giant permanent exhibition to celebrate the School's 30th birthday next year.

You can get all the news as it happens by following the UNIS Hanoi Alumni News section... or you can enjoy this convenient quarterly roundup!

Featured Stories: 

Meanwhile at UNIS Hanoi:

Our Global Alumni Notes

Phuong (Enna) Bui (Class of 2010) and Dai (Kenny) Nguyen (Class of 2010) were married in a beautiful ceremony in Melia Hotel in Hanoi on September 16, 2016. Enna and Ken first met each other at UNIS Hanoi where they both attended Middle School. It is our first ever UNIS Hanoi Alumni Student wedding!. Ken's mother, Dr Hai Oanh Khuat (Alumni Parent) used to sit on UNIS Hanoi Board of Director. Enna's younger brother is also attending UNIS. Among the guests were Pam (Class of 2012) and other Class of 2010 alumni Ekkrit Suwanwong (see below), Viet Truong, Khanh Pham, Kien Phi, Le Binh Do, Quan Duong, Hoa Le, Hau (Lisa) Nguyen, Lan Le, Phu Nguyen and Nam Vu. Enna and Ken were thrilled to celebrate their wedding surrounded by so many UNIS Hanoi friends.

Pam (Class of 2012) and Ekkrit (Class of 2010) Suwanwong were back on campus while in Hanoi to attend Phuong (Enna) Bui (Class of 2010) and Dai (Ken) Nguyen's (Class of 2010) wedding. Pam and Ekkrit enjoyed walking around the campus and catching up with Mr Phi and Ms Noullet. "It's still the same, with some new buildings", Pam said. Both Ekkrit and Pam are working and living in Bangkok.

Anna-Marie Lietar (Class of 2012) graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Leuven - KU Leuven, Master of Science in Business Administration and Information Technology.

Annie Langan (formerly Ngoc Anh Dang - Class of 2007) wrote to share the first birthday celebration of her daughter Janine. It was a Dol ceremony to celebrate Janine's part Korean origin. Dol or doljanchi is a Korean tradition that celebrates the first birthday of a baby. The highlight of the dol is a ritual called the doljabi where the child is placed in front of a table of foods and objects such as string, brushes, ink and money and Janine picked up a financial calculator first! Annie and her husband Chris live and work in Toronto, Canada. Annie's brother Thai Son Dang (Class of 2014) also attended UNIS Hanoi.




Jessy Penrose (Class of 2007) shares about her recent backpacking trip to Sri Lanka.

"As days get shorter in Europe and signs of autumn are creeping in, my partner and I decide to leave Zurich and head to Sri Lanka to backpack for two weeks. Walking off the plane in Colombo, we notice the heat and humidity first. As we make our way into the centre, the chaos on the streets, the smell of spices perfuming the air and the constant honking of vehicles on the road remind me of my days living in Hanoi.

Leaving the city of Colombo behind us, we make our way up to the central/northern part of Sri Lanka by train. First stop, Kandy. We buy a ticket , second class which we were warned by the ticket office is often overcrowded and hot, however, we give it a try. The four hour journey is breath-taking, passing by lush green mountains and through tea plantations. Monkeys of all shapes and sizes swing from branch to branch and the smell of tea is lingering in the air. As dusk closes in, the skies fill with millions of big furry fruit bats swarming from tree to tree in search of food. After Kandy we continue our journey to Nuwara Eliya and Ella. Despite never booking our guest houses, we were always lucky. They always had a double bed, mosquito net and cold water (warm water was a luxury). We then head down to the southern coast (Bundala, Tangalle, Welligama, Unawatuna, Galle, Aluthgama) and finally reach Negombo. The southern coast is beautiful, white sand beaches, bright golden yellow king coconuts hanging from every palm tree and the friendliness and kindness of the people make it very special.

By the end of the trip we were no longer paying foreigner prices but local ones. We had picked up the few basics of Singhalese and could say which foods we preferred. In fact, we got very comfortable in Sri Lanka, but it was time to return to Zurich. We both knew, one day we would be back again."

Maximilian Tang (Class of 2014) is studying Law at The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Maximilian is working to establish a Negotiation Club at the LSE to provide a space where interested students can learn and practice the art of negotiation and turn its members into "the best negotiators they could possibly be". The club will offer members an intellectual forum to discuss the extensive academic theory behind the art of negotiation; host leaders in the art of negotiation – from world-renowned academics to politicians with a plethora of relevant practical knowledge – to share their experiences; and conduct negotiation exercises, mirroring business, political and social settings, to apply and consolidate all the lessons learnt.

Alex Pio (Class of 2004) just moved to Cape Town, South Africa.

Nicoline Poulsen (Class of 2012) completed her Masters in Environmental Management and Consultancy at Lancaster University and is excited to start on her next adventure with a volunteering position for World Wildlife Fund in the Solomon Islands. Nicoline shares: “As the conservation strategy practiced is largely community based, I believe I will be working alongside local communities and see their important role in the protection of marine ecosystems. The local communities in the Solomon Islands (and the other Pacific island countries) have a high dependency on marine resources for both subsistence and income and so the work WWF does here focuses largely on protecting these marine resources.”

Kim-Leigh Endley (Class of 2007)
proudly announces the birth of her first daughter, Izabella-Rose Catalina Groepes, born on 22 September 2016. Kim lives and works in Pretoria, South Africa.







Bram Smis (Class of 2008) stopped by UNIS Hanoi on his motorbike road trip through Vietnam. Bram started his trip from Ho Chi Minh City on September 26, 2016 and arrived to Hanoi on October 13, 2016 and continued up North to Sapa. Bram is living in Brussels, Belgium but is looking forward to moving to South Africa soon.




Victor (Class of 2025) and Tony Borchert (Class of 2023) were back on campus with parents Kai Borchert (Alumni Parent and Faculty/Staff) and Birgit Erbel (Alumni Parent) just in time to see the new Elementary School playground. The family now lives in Cologne, Germany.




Over the Autumn Break Devin Cheong (not in the picture), Thai Son Trinh, Phuong Ly, Jedidah (Jed) Edwards, Son Nguyen (Class of 2016) had a mini reunion in New York.





Lois Coulthart (Alumni Librarian) stopped by UNIS Hanoi and reconnected up with long time coworkers Huong Dao and Quynh Le (Library Teaching Assistants). Lois had not been back to UNIS Hanoi or Vietnam since leaving the School in 2007. After leaving UNIS Hanoi, Lois had worked in Australia then in the USA. She and her husband now live near London, UK.

Nikolaj Jensen (Class of 2015) and mother Merete Jensen (Alumni Parent) came by to see the School. Nikolaj is taking a gap year and is travelling with friends. The family now lives in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Annie Gainsborough (Class of 2012) made UNIS Hanoi a stop on her Asia tour after meeting up with many of her friends from UNIS time all around Asia. She was delighted to meet many of her former teachers when she was at UNIS in Grade 6 in 2005-2006, Mr Campbell, Mr Cooper and Mr Phi. Annie said, "It was so incredible to be back! It is almost the same (except bigger trees now!) and a few new bits and bobs. And I could even recognise myself and my friends in the children." Inspired by her service activities with Blue Dragon children during her year at UNIS, Annie has been actively involved in community service ever since. Annie graduated University of Sheffield in 2015 and is living and working in the UK.


Paroot Mekkrajang (Class of 2011) was in Seoul for business reasons and met up with some Class of 2011 members, which he hadn't seen in years. The Class of 2011 members in Seoul introduced Paroot to their home town and made sure he didn't miss out on some of Seoul's best delicacies.

Keep in Touch! WRITE TO US - We would love to hear from you and about your updates. »


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