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IT in the Classroom

ISF graduate works towards a brighter future in computer technologies.

After the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated digital transformation, ISF graduate, Vatana, pursues a career at the forefront of the post-pandemic world. Halfway through her first year of studies at the National Institute of Posts, Telecommunications and ICT (NIPTICT), Vatana eagerly anticipates her first-semester test scores.

Born in Kampong Cham Province, on the central lowlands of the Mekong River, Vatana did not have access to a good education. Coupled with poor attendance and insufficient resources, her concerned aunt brought her to the city, where she enrolled in ISF’s Catch-up Programme.

Graduating Grade 12, Vatana received a full-ride scholarship for her Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science and was one of 17 graduates to start university this year. Electing to take a difficult course load - Discrete Mathematics, Algorithms and Programming, and Interpersonal Skills - Vatana felt the effects of virtual learning.

Adapting to a new environment, the university-level pace of learning, and no face-to-face interactions was challenging. Alongside provisions of a monthly data top-up and a loaned laptop, ISF’s Employment Programme has supported her education with Linklater's online mentorship and soft-skills training.

In Cambodia, computer science is a historically male-dominated field. Although more women have begun studying this subject, the transferable skills embedded in ISF’s curriculum and employment programme (like teamwork, problem-solving, communication, and gender equality) will support Vatana as she pursues her professional aspirations.

With most of her university education still to come, Vatana is hopeful that technology will continue becoming more advanced. After seeing how the pandemic forced a quick digital pivot, she believes that demand will expand, and she will have access to more career opportunities.

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