Hanoi...a blend of cultures in Vietnam's charming capital city
Students will spend a semester or summer in Hanoi, studying Vietnamese culture, language, society and many other courses at Hanoi University; living in student housing at IPSL's NGO partner Center for Sustainable Development Studies (CSDS) and engaging in substantive volunteer service for 12-15 hours per week. The volunteer service immerses students in the culture and deepens their understanding of Vietnamese society and contributes to acquisition of the Vietnamese language. As the capital of Vietnam for almost a thousand years, Hanoi is considered one of the most important cultural centers of Vietnam, where most Vietnamese dynasties have left their imprint. A city between the rivers, built from lowland, Hanoi has many scenic lakes and it is sometimes called "City of Lakes." Among its lakes, the most famous are West Lake, Halais Lake and Bay Mau Lake. The charming and vibrant Vietnamese capital has aged well, preserving the Old Quarter, monuments and colonial architecture, while making room for modern developments alongside. Hanoi may have shrugged off several former names, including Thang Long, or "ascending dragon," but it hasn't forgotten its past, as sites such as Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum and Hoa Lo Prison attest. Lakes, parks, shady boulevards and more than 600 temples and pagodas add to the appeal of this city.
Don't take our word for it...read what a recent alum has to say about IPSL Hanoi.
Socialism in Vietnam has its own unique style, forged through years of resistance to threats from larger and more powerful nations. This determination to remain independent has created a culture of self-reliance, discipline and solidarity that is still visible today in public life. Conversations with ordinary Vietnamese people about the past and future of their nation permit IPSL students to understand this culture and people in a deeper, more meaningful way.