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Int'l student studies abroad in the Netherlands

Photo of Tho Le at the School of Industrial engineering and innovation sciences, Netherlands
Tho Le at the School of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences
in Eindhoven
Photo of Tho Le at Keukenhof Gardens
Enjoying Keukenhof Gardens, one of the largest flower gardens in Europe
An international MSIE/PhD student learned valuable lessons studying abroad in the Netherlands.

Tho V. Le is a dual degree student earning both his Master's in Industrial Engineering and his PhD in Civil Engineering. He is from Vietnam, and spent this past summer as a visiting scholar at the School of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences at Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) in the Netherlands.

Le learned about the study abroad opportunity in 2016, when he met TUE Professor Tom van Woensel at an Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) conference. As the two shared details of their research, they realized they could collaborate on various projects. Van Woensel later invited him to come for a full-funded research visit during the summer.

"Professor Tom van Woensel from TUE is a well-known professor in Operations Research in general, and in transportation and logistics in particular," said Le. "As I plan to write a paper which is close to his research areas, it benefitted me to accept his invitation to do research at TUE."

He learned to model matching and routing problems, and also learned CPLEX, a software program which will help solve the models. The study abroad opportunity also helped him better understand matching and routing strategies for emerging crowd-shipping systems.

"The optimization techniques which are used for matching and routing are definitely valuable for my future carrier since I am developing my skills to become an optimization specialist," he said.

Le recommends Study Abroad as an excellent opportunity to broaden one's knowledge, network with people, and learn amazing and unexpected new things. On a personal level, Le found the Netherlands to be a beautiful country and the Dutch to be very friendly. "I would love to come back there in the future!" he said.

He hopes to graduate in Dec 2018 with both degrees, and is open to working afterward in either academia or industry.