Sun Belt Conference Commissioner Karl Benson discussed the meaning of success with Troy University graduates in Vietnam in August.
Benson and his wife Sarah joined Troy University officials including Chancellor Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr., on a trip to Vietnam Aug. 14-22 to participate in commencement ceremonies at TROY’s partner institutions in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). Benson delivered keynote remarks to about 100 graduates during three ceremonies at the Hanoi University of Science and Technology, the University of Economics and Business (Vietnam National University) in Hanoi, and Saigon Technical University.
“This was my first visit to Vietnam, we were so impressed by the hospitality and kindness we experienced,” Benson said.
Benson’s remarks included some famous lessons from the world of NCAA athletics. He shared the words of renowned basketball coach John Wooden, who defined success as knowing you have done “the best of which you are capable of doing.” Benson urged graduates to keep in mind the attributes included in Wooden’s famous “Pyramid of Success,” including industriousness, enthusiasm, friendship, loyalty and cooperation.
“Focus on these fundamental values and supporting attributes to prepare you for greatness,” Benson said. “By doing so you will undoubtedly be successful in your life and your chosen field of work.”
Through its partner institutions, TROY currently offers two degree programs to local students in Vietnam: the Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.
Troy University began offering courses in Vietnam in 2004. The first students graduated in 2008, making TROY the first U.S. university to award the baccalaureate degree in Vietnam.
There are about 1,000 TROY graduates in Vietnam, including many rising leaders in business, government, military and education.
About 120 students from Vietnam study at the Troy Campus, many of whom started with TROY at home before transferring. There are students from 76 different countries enrolled at the Troy Campus.
“It’s been transformative for TROY to become Alabama’s International University,” Dr. Hawkins said. “Working with the military, we found ourselves in countries around the world, and we continue to serve students throughout Asia, and at a distance electronically in 13 different times zones. It’s something that makes Troy University a bit different, and I think it makes us the University of the future, because in the world ahead the global village is where we all will live.”