Youth Leaders Global Network Seeks to Champion Youth Development across ASEAN
Cross Border Engagement is a Key Cog to Improve ASEAN’s YDI
What characteristics distinguish ASEAN's youth from their peers in other countries? What are their most significant contributions? Are they willing to sacrifice personal goals to work together for common good?
To see behind the numbers and understand what really matters, Project Director of Youlead19, Muhammad Isfahan Mohd Fauzi, a Bachelor in Information System student at UTP says, "These were the questions that team Youth Leaders Global Network set about to answer. To this end, we recently flew to Vietnam to conduct a comparison study to learn more about the country's Youth Development Index (YDI)."
After holding a leadership seminar in collaboration with Vietnam's FPT University of Hanoi, tellingly, according to Isfahan, in many measurable areas, the overarching sense of patriotism lies in the willingness to volunteer for social good.
The summit, branded You Lead, convened students from both countries to share ideas on how to advance ASEAN's youth development. Prior to the summit, the group conducted two social experiments both in Malaysia and Vietnam. The social experiments were weighted to capture both countries' youth population.
Interestingly, the social experiments were conducted at three youth-laden locations in both Malaysia and Vietnam. To gather data for the experiments, Hanoi's Aeon Mall, Hoen Kiem Lake and Malaysia's Ipoh Parade were chosen to carry out the experiments.
Saliently, the experiments were sampled by accidentally dropping a box bottles inside the malls to compare how youth of both countries would respond. In comparison, the group found out that Malaysia's YDI was waning while Vietnam's on the other hand was on the rise.
After the experiments, also, the group deduced that when a country's citizens are less patriotic, they become less empathic towards others. Additionally, this would result in lower participation and contribution to national causes.
Isfahan says, "We realized that we can lean on each other to grow. ASEAN nations should join hands to improve the lives of their youth. We believe our concerns warrant urgent attention."
In addition, a number of discussions and idea sharing sessions took place between students of both universities during the group's stay in Hanoi from the 12th to the 25th August 2019.
Following this, Youth Leaders Global Network, together with students Vietnam's FPT University of Hanoi conducted a leadership camp with the high school students of the university.
Significantly, according to Isfahan, the outcomes derived from the leadership seminar and camp will serve as a groundwork to discuss YDI at higher ASEAN level.
Isfahan says, "We need to make sure that top leadership hierarchies are aligned on the goals and means of change for youth. Through this engagement, we can transfer the alignment through mutual respect and empowerment."
Recognising that the fate of change resides with youth, Isfahan says, "Moving forward, we seek to promote volunteerism as a means to instil a sense of belonging to the community in Malaysia. This certainly would help pull the nation together."
Also, before leaving Vietnam, the data collected was shared with the Director of FTP University's International Affairs Department and the Malaysian Embassy.
Indeed, this is another prime example of UTP's profound career connected learning and industry collaboration. From the work we do, we foster long-term relationships with our global social-impact partners to prepare our students, people and researchers as global citizens.
As a leading university in engineering, science and technology, our graduates are driven to exceed their professional objectives and contribute towards overcoming capability deficit across all sectors and industries.