The 29-year-old biology teacher was hired by Thanh An Secondary School, the only secondary school in Thanh An commune, which is bordered by mangrove forests, in Can Gio district.
Upon graduation from the Quang Binh College of Education, Minh was told that the commune school was looking for teachers and she applied for a job.
When she first arrived at the commune, located about 70 kilometres to the east of central HCM City, Minh discovered that she to take a ferry to Can Gio district and then a wooden boat to reach the school.
“During the first days of teaching, I was sad and homesick. I thought about giving up teaching altogether, and leaving this place, which had electricity generated from a diesel power station for only 18 hours a day,” Minh said.
Last year, however, the island was connected to the national grid.
“Three years of studying at the College of Education would have been a waste, though, if I had given up. So, I decided to stay. ”
When she saw the smiles on the faces of her students, her mood always lifted.
“Their smiles and their interest motivated me to stay and do a good job,” Minh said, adding that she began to slowly adapt to the new circumstances.
“Now, I don’t want to leave the peaceful life and pure air here, although some of my colleagues say that the City needs teachers and suggested that I apply,” Minh said.
The students in the commune are obedient and virtuous, and the parents, who are often poor, do not pay attention or care about their children’s learning, so the school’s teachers must fulfill that role, according to Minh. VNA