Project Description

Meet Menghun Kaing – Harpswell Alumna

I strongly believe that as long as I keep working hard, I will eventually reach my destination to develop myself, my family, and Cambodia as a whole.

With the knowledge I learned from the program, I want to become an information technology (IT) professor. It will provide me with an opportunity to help younger Cambodian generations to better understand modern technology by teaching and sharing my knowledge and experiences with them. This then will help our nation to become part of the modern day technological world and eventually will result in development as a whole.

Pursuing a master’s degree at the University of Chicago as an Obama Fellow

Degree in Computer Science from the Royal University of Phnom Penh


Royal University of Phnom Penh


“I don’t want you to follow my footprints,” mom said while pealing a ripe mango with the wrinkled face of her fifties. “I regret having to give up my studies.” I wish I hadn’t dropped out of school. It hurts, you know.” After her mother’s death, mom became the mother of the other seven kids. She took care of everything from looking after the baby, cooking, and cleaning to shopping and farming. She could not bear doing all of this massive work while also attending school, so she decided to stop going to school when she was in grade five.

The Importance of Educating Girls

“Since I was in middle school, I have always dreamt of becoming an educated woman who could support my family and myself and live my life differently from that of my mom.  My parents have always been so courageous. They sent all of their kids to school while most families tend to send only their sons to school. For this reason, I am so proud of who I am. The only vehicle that can transport me from illiteracy and poverty to a brighter and better life is education.”

Harpswell’s Impact

“Living here [at Harpswell] has positioned me to gain leadership skills through weekly seminars provided by the Harpswell’s country managers, leadership residents, and distinguished guests, regarding a range of topics from how to become a successful person to how to be a good leader. I have developed social awareness and critical thinking by participating in weekly discussions on national and international news articles. I have come to realize what is happening in the society and to learn how people deal with problems.”