enCity Summer Interns 2021: “We enjoy enCity so much!”

This summer, enCity warmly welcomed four interns to our Singapore and Vietnam offices. All of them are taking up programmes related to urban studies or architecture in different universities around the world, namely in Canada, France, Singapore and Australia. After two months of spending time with our team, they shared with us a little about themselves and their experience working in the company.

enCity: What is your background and expertise, and why did you choose to apply to enCity for your internship?

Thao Nguyen: I’m in my third year at McGill University (Canada). I’m majoring in Urban Studies, so I’m very interested in planning, urban design and geographic information systems (GIS). At the beginning of summer, when I was researching internship opportunities, I read that enCity was recruiting interns. When I went to your website to learn about the company, I immediately admired the team, who all had extensive and diverse expertise in planning, design and economics. So I applied and was happy to become a GIS intern in the R&D department.

Son Nguyen: I am in the first year of my master’s degree in Université Gustave Eiffel (France), majoring in Urban Engineering. This course usually takes 2 years to finish in Europe. Previously, I studied Bridge and Railway Engineering for a year at the University of Transport and Communications (Vietnam). This summer, when I asked some French companies with branches in Vietnam for internship opportunities, one of them introduced enCity and your projects in Vietnam. I liked the company profile very much, so I applied.

Gu Qianhua: I graduated from SCUT in 2020, and I am currently enrolled in the Master of Urban Planning programme at NUS. I have never worked in a design company before, and it was a really good chance for me to experience working in a professional environment. Also, I wanted to expand my view of urban planning, which is currently only based on China and developed countries, to understand other contexts.

Ghim Chong Tan: I am currently a student in the University of Western Australia. I major in Architecture and aspire to be an architect in the future because I love being creative and helping people. I feel that architecture is a medium to fulfill both my life goals and passions. Before Australia, I was a student in Nanyang Polytechnic (Singapore) and did projects for Singapore National Museum, Resort World Sentosa and so on. The reason why I joined enCity is to learn more about urban design, the design ideas behind them and their processes. I also wanted to learn about the business behind large-scale projects and the business model of planning cities.

enCity: What projects did you participate in, and how was your experience being involved in them?

Thao Nguyen: I had a chance to participate in two big projects of enCity: Thu Duc City Master Plan and Binh Phuoc Provincial Planning. Being able to work on a real project brought me a lot of real experiences. I learned about data management of terrain and traffic, and I understood how long and complicated the process of transferring a drawing from AutoCAD to GIS is. I am very grateful to Mr. Minh Nguyen (Senior Associate in Water, Environment and GIS, enCity) for always patiently answering all my questions, because I asked a lot (laughs). I also thank Ms. Hoa Nguyen (Associate in Policy and Planning, enCity) for guiding me in the Thu Duc project.

Son Nguyen: I participated in the Tay Ninh Provincial Planning project, and supported Ms. Linh Trinh (Senior Associate of Planning, Project Director) in researching and synthesizing data from the provincial departments. These tasks helped me understand what local departments and agencies do and how they process data. In France, we were trained more on the technical side. When I participated in the meetings with provincial leaders, including the Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee and the president of the province, hearing their visions of 20, 30 years in the future… such opportunities were so precious. I am very grateful to my mentors and colleagues at enCity for guiding and showing me how I can improve, especially Ms. Linh Trinh for being really meticulous about small details, such as typos in the presentation slides. I learned a lot while working with Linh.

Gu Qianhua: The first project I was involved in was Long An VSIP, and it was great that I can follow the project throughout the whole internship. The other projects I have worked on were NEO, Synergy, Vinh Phuc, Binh Thuan, Thu Duc etc. It was a valuable internship experience for me because I had the chance to be deeply involved in the work and listen in on the discussions during the design process. I thank my mentor, Pablo, who gave me lots of opportunities to participate in different projects.

Ghim Chong Tan: I designed a beach club for a project in Da Nang City, modelling the building and doing an illustrative perspective. I also designed both semi-detached houses and villas for a project in Lang Chai, doing concept 3D models for both designs.

enCity: Great to hear that you learned a lot from us! Now that your internship is almost over, what can you say about enCity’s company culture?

Son Nguyen: My first impression was that enCity is very professional. I was impressed with the company’s communication team. They update the news on their website and social media channels daily, and not many companies can do that. In addition, the colleagues at enCity have very diverse and multi-disciplinary professional backgrounds. In France, a company would only often hire people from the same expertise. At enCity, there are experts in a variety of fields, bringing many interesting perspectives to me.

Thao Nguyen: enCity is a very professional consulting company. I admired everything, from the company process, culture and event organization. When I talk to anyone, they all have many good stories. I really felt that they are all contributing to completing and perfecting enCity’s projects. Plus, enCitizens are super cute, friendly and supportive.

Gu Qianhua: I am very happy that I have spent my summer with a warm team. Although due to COVID-19 situation, we could not meet frequently, but I fully felt that all the team members were very friendly to me, and they care about each other as well.

Ghim Chong Tan: I enjoyed working in enCity. The team was friendly, patient and willing to guide me. I have learned a lot about urban design and how impactful city design can be. My mentor taught me different styles and philosophies of architecture. The projects were insightful and I learned a lot from them. For example, road planning, landscaping and tourism sites.

enCity: Last but not least, will you come back to us after you graduate and apply as a full-time member of our team?

Gu Qianhua: I will seriously consider it (smiling).

Ghim Chong Tan: Yes! I love the work culture in enCity and the amount of trust everybody gave each other. The team is very dynamic and engaging, and I can see a very strong bond between them.

Son & Thao: Sure! We love enCity!