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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodian students win international award

Cambodian students win international award

Speakers hold the UBS Asia Pacific Regional Excellence Award. L to R: Kirill Mankovsky, Longdy Yi, Rami Sharaf, Makara Yi. Photograph supplied

Cambodian student members of the youth leadership group Association Internationale des Études en Sciences ÉconomiquesetCommerciales (AIESEC) celebrated yesterday for winning the UBS Regional Excellence Award.

The AIESEC is a global youth leadership organisation active in 113 countries and territories with over 80,000 members. Founded in 1948, it aims to develop the leadership capabilities of its members.

Here in Cambodia, the organisation offers its members the chance to go on international exchanges, internships and professional development opportunities. Earlier this year this Cambodian chapter hosted a Young Leaders Recruitment Fair & Youth to Business Forum and places them in organizations to develop their business skills.

In August the young leadership group sent Cambodian representatives to Moscow, Russia for the 64th International Congress where it made history as the youngest entity to receive the award for the Asia Pacific region, having been established for only three years.

AIESEC Cambodia
president, Yi Longdy, gave a speech to 50 people, most of whom were proud AIESEC Cambodia members, at the Ford showroom near Phnom Penh airport. Yi Longdy said that receiving the award proved that Cambodian youth are just as capable as the youth in more prosperous countries.

“It shows, despite all the hardships and all the unfortunate incidents that this country has had to go through, Cambodia can depend on her young people for a brighter and more prosperous future. It shows Cambodian youth do have the potential to do something big, no less better than youth of other more developed nations,” he said in his speech.

Rami Sharaf, CEO of RMA Cambodia and member of AIESEC’s board of directors spoke of the tough competition they faced, “For this specific award it was a big challenge. Cambodia was competing with India and China and when I heard that we won I thought a country of 14 million people is now competing with a population of 2 billion people combined. It was a point of pride for us.”

The award judged applicants based on the quality of the programs they provide, such as student exchanges, leadership experiences and other acknowledgements and awards received in the past year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Erika Mudie at



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