Secondary School and University Scholarship Programs

Key Information

The Asia Foundation’s University Scholarship and Secondary School Scholarship programs support low-income and disadvantaged girls and young women in Vietnam to pursue an education and build key life and leadership skills. Since 2004, we have supported 1,700 girls in Nam Dinh, Dien Bien, Cao Bang, An Giang, Can Tho, and Hau Giang provinces to attend secondary school. With declining dropout rates and higher grades, more than 70% of these students have been admitted to universities or vocational colleges. Since 2011, we have supported 220 young women to pursue university degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields in which women are particularly underrepresented, such as engineering and natural sciences. Of the 100 young women in the first cohort, 100% graduated from university, 84% found a stable job, and 10% have pursued a Master’s degree overseas. The Foundation’s secondary and university scholars come from low-income families who are unable to support their daughters to attend school. Secondary school scholars must have strong academic credentials and a demonstrated work ethic, and receive recommendations from their schools, local Educational Promotion Associations, and local authorities. The university program awards scholarships to young women in their first year at a participating university who have demonstrated academic achievement and a commitment to learning. The Foundation works closely with a local partner and university administrations to identify university students who meet the selection criteria for scholarship recipients.

Lead Implementing Organization(s)


2004 -


Viet Nam


Not applicable or unknown


Not applicable or unknown

COVID-19 Response


Government Affiliation


Ministry Affiliation


Areas of Work Back to Top

Education areas


  • Post-secondary
  • Primary to secondary transition
  • Secondary completion

Other skills

  • Social and emotional learning
  • Vocational training

Cross-cutting areas

  • Economic/livelihoods (including savings/financial inclusion, etc.)
  • Empowerment
  • Mentorship

Program participants

Target Audience(s)

Girls in school


Not applicable or unknown

School Enrolment Status

All in school

School Level

  • Lower secondary
  • Upper secondary
  • Tertiary

Other populations reached

Not applicable or unknown

Participants include

Not applicable or unknown

Program Approaches Back to Top

Mentoring/psychosocial support

  • Adult (non-teacher) mentors
  • Peer mentors

Reducing economic barriers

  • Addressing cost of school supplies
  • Scholarships/stipends for school fees

Program Goals Back to Top

Education goals

  • Improved social and emotional learning/skills and mindsets
  • Increased progression to secondary school
  • Increased secondary school completion
  • Increased secondary school enrolment

Cross-cutting goals

  • Increased agency and empowerment
  • Increased employment/job-related skills
  • Reduced poverty/increase household well-being