Bloch student dedicated to connecting with international peers
Hieu Phung (B.B.A.) understands the importance of creating connections across cultures. Upon coming to the United States from Vietnam in 2013, Phung made it his mission to connect with other international students like himself, making the Bloch School the perfect place for him.
“Getting to know all of the international students at the Bloch School is really cool,” Phung says. “Forming relationships with peers who have faced similar challenges or obstacles as me is inspiring.”
Holding executive positions in clubs like the International Student Council, Phung is heavily involved with international affairs on campus and believes in the power of cultural diversity on college campuses.
“It’s a good thing we have different cultures coming together here,” Phung says. “It provides diversity in ethnic backgrounds, but, more importantly, diversity in the way people think.”
And as important as diversity is on a college campus, Phung knows it is equally as important in the workplace.
“With diverse workers, you get local knowledge you don’t get access to from secondary research,” he says. “There are some things you can’t learn through books.”
After graduation, Phung plans to stay in Kansas City to earn his MBA from the Bloch School and find work in marketing or international business management. He sees the opportunities for growth in terms of international management in Kansas City and values the strong, already established connections the Bloch School has with many businesses in the area, not to mention the opportunities for businesses oversees.
In the long-term, Phung hopes to work in higher education, in partnership with students to develop student-oriented programs much like he does now. A lot of his inspiration comes from his favorite Bloch School professor, Laura Rees, Ph.D. He will never forget her contagious energy, support of his aspirations and guidance through his entrepreneurship project. In addition to being a great professor, Rees is also a mentor to Phung, giving him a few pieces of advice he will take with him on his professional journey.
“She told me not to be shy and to talk to new people,” Phung says. “And if you have opportunities, go and get them.”
Hieu is highlighted in the 2017 Bloch Magazine. To read the full edition, click here.