RMIT students from Vietnam and Melbourne have collaborated on communication campaigns through an innovative cross-campus elective.
Media and communication students recently returned to Melbourne from a two-week study tour at RMIT's Saigon South campus.
The study tour was part of the Interdisciplinary Communication Project (ICP) - a 12-week transnational collaboration.
The elective, involving students from RMIT University Vietnam and RMIT's City campus, encouraged intercultural awareness and industry engagement through the design and execution of communication campaigns.
The students devised a series of campaigns that sought to increase global mobility by promoting exchange programs to students in Melbourne and Vietnam.
Students from the Media, Journalism, Advertising, Communication Design and Professional Communication programs attended the study tour, which encouraged collaborative team efforts to best develop their specialist skills and foster their communication abilities.
Denham Sadler, a third-year Bachelor of Communication (Professional Communication) student, said the ICP project helped him develop skills in an international setting and in a way that was culturally sensitive.
"I think intercultural awareness is so important because we have to adapt to the evolving nature of communications, which is now inherently global, so it's vital to veer outside of an Australian context," he said.
"Even small things - such as how to begin and end an e-mail - were very different in Vietnam.
"It's eye-opening to be exposed to these differences and something that's very important for communication students to grasp!"
Rachel Wilson, media lecturer at RMIT's Media and Communication, said the project helped the students learn about cultural differences and how these could impact on the specific tactics required in different markets.
"The project required the students to work in tangent with real life clients to come up with solutions to carry out their organisational goals in an intercultural context," Ms Wilson said.
Once the students returned to Melbourne, they continued to implement their strategy on behalf of the client and worked via teleconferencing, Google Docs and social media in transnational interdisciplinary teams.
Landon Carnie, coordinator of the elective in Vietnam, said projects like the ICP sought to create industry-ready graduates who learned the skills to effectively work with industry professionals in diverse settings outside familiar milieus.
"It was a great opportunity for Vietnamese students to share their country's rich culture and lifestyle as well as build relationships with students from Australia; whereas the Australian students were able to experience academic study similar to what they receive in Melbourne but with a dose of adventure and culture," Mr Carnie said.
The ICP elective is part of the Centre of Communication and Design at RMIT Vietnam and RMIT's School of Media and Communication.
Cross-cultural collaboration between Australian and Vietnamese students encouraged industry engagement and cultural awareness.
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