UP VOICE VOL.21 – 31ST JUL 2019

The Official Newsletter of the University of Puthisastra (UP)-Vol.17 for 31st July 2019 Download

Global education is real at UP!


For the last 4 years, UPs Faculty of Pharmacy has been Cambodia’s Top Pharmacy educator providing the best opportunities for pharmacy students to showcase their research and present their abstracts at the international conferences.

For example, in the first seven months of 2019, 68 UP pharmacy students went abroad for international internships and conferences in Thailand, Indonesia, Poland, China and the Republic of Korea. Among them, 21 pharmacy students conducted international internship at Khon Kaen University, Thailand; 9 pharmacy students attended the international conference at Walailak University, Thailand; 2 pharmacy students joined the International Conference in Nakhon Si Thammarat, Thailand; 5 pharmacy students will join International Pharmacy Summer School at Universitas Muhammadiyah Yogyakarta, Indonesia; 29 pharmacy students got travel grants to attend the Asian Association of Schools of Pharmacy Conference at Ajou University, Korea; 1 pharmacy student will do exchange program in Poland; and 1 pharmacy student will attend the conference in China.

UP trains Cambodian students to be global citizens by teaching intensive English programs which are taught by native speakers. Every Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12:30pm-1:30pm, UP also there is an English corner where students can have a chance to practice their English with native speakers in an informal setting!

UP is making sure that within the next 5 years, Cambodia will be full of skilful and talented researchers that could bring innovative solutions to help solve the many problems in Cambodia’s health-care system.


UP has recently formed a group of volunteer students who will focus on improving the oral health of children with Special Needs (eg those with intellectual and physical disabilities).

Under the supervision of team leader Dr Chray Mengkheng, the 10 students from year 3 have already visited schools for disabled children and carried out dental examinations and fluoride applications. This special group of children often miss out on chances to get dental treatment or they are forced to participate in treatments in settings that are unwelcoming for them. The new “You Smile, I Smile” team has purchased colourful dental gowns to wear, a soft floor mat and pillows for some of the children to lie on, in order to make dental treatment friendly and accessible. Although the work is sometimes challenging, the students enjoy the experience and love meeting and getting to know the children.

It is hoped that through ongoing training and experience, the “You Smile, I Smile” dental team can bring basic preventive and treatment services to these children, mostly on-site in the schools which they attend. Some children will be offered more advanced treatment later at the UP Dental Clinic.

UP launches 3rd Parasitology Project in Takeo province

The increasing incidence of multi-drug resistant pathogenic bacteria, alongside viral and fungal human pathogens, supports the argument that skills in microbiology and infectious disease diagnosis, treatment and prevention are of growing global importance for health-care professionals, including pharmacists. This leads to an expansion of the role of pharmacists in health care which in turn requires the need to improve pharmacy education.

One way to improve education for students is through the community project, allowing students could practice their knowledge and skills in realistic real-life settings.

UPs Faculty of Pharmacy therefore created a Parasitology community outreach programme in 2016 to expand students’ knowledge and practical skills in this area. This year, the project took place in Takeo province and was run by year-3 pharmacy students and faculties under the support from the local authorities and other relevant institutes.


UP signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with LYCEUM OF THE PHILIPPINES UNIVERSITY CAVITE. Lyceum of The Philippines University one of the Philippines largest universities with over 37,000 students. The purpose of this MoU is to foster academic partnership and cooperation between UP and LPU particularly in the area of laboratory sciences.

UP celebrates 40th Anniversary of Faculty of Dentistry at Khon Kaen University

UPs Dean and Deputy Dean of Dentistry travelled to Khon Kaen University in Thailand last week to attend a meeting of over 15 dental schools in the region. The initial 2-day Deans meeting focused on how to promote research training in the region. Previously there was a research development program (which about 12 Cambodian dentists attended) which was funded by NIH in the US, in partnership with Washington State University, KKU and Thammasat University.

UP is a close partner of KKU, and many dental, medical and pharmacy students take part in exchange programs there every year. We hope to continue to build this close collaboration in the future. KKU also offers Master degree scholarships to our staff and new graduates. Presently Dr Chhe Phearom is doing his Masters of Paediatric Dentistry there – and will return to UP as only the second specialist pediatric dentist in Cambodia. Several of our new graduates hope to pursue postgraduate studies, and KKU is an ideal place for this.

Following the two day Deans meeting, the delegates were invited to tour the KKU dental school and then attend the 17th International Scientific Conference of the Dental Faculty Consortium of Thailand (DFCT) The theme of the meeting was “Emerging Trends in Dentistry” with excellent speakers from Thailand and around the world.

mobile app development class

Congratulations to our students from the Flutter mobile app development class. At the end of the course, they were able to create a mobile app from scratch ! Check some of the projects students have completed below:
1. Veng Y: Food app with Camera feature and connecting with Firebase
2. Vannarith: News24 accessing news API
3. Phokkinn: Payment Depreciation app
4. Yeatra: Realtime chat app with Firebase
5. Kongsun: To do list mobile app

Thank you Teacher Saokosal for sharing your passion !

UP hosts Laboratory Testing Quality workshop

On July 18 and 19 the Association for Medical Laboratory Development (AMLD), in cooperation with Roche Diagnostics Ltd (Thailand) conducted a 2-day Roche Quality Days workshop at the University of Puthisastra (UP) about the Roche Advance Quality Control System Program. There were two main objectives of this advance workshop. Firstly, to empower the knowledge of quality control and performance in the laboratory. Secondly, to implement quality control program according to good laboratory practices. The speakers were from Thailand, Institute Pasteur in Cambodia, and N health Cambodia.

AMLD and Roche Company also met with Professor Ian Findlay, UP President and Vice-Chancellor, and Ouk Soksereivotanak, Director of Laboratory Sciences, to exchange ideas and build collaboration for the future.

UP lab students commence 3-month internship

at Institute Pasteur and Sihanouk Hospital: Center of Hope

Medical laboratory students will conduct their 3-month internship from July 29, 2019 till October 11, 2019, at Institute Pasteur in Cambodia and Sihanouk Hospital: Center of Hope Medical Laboratory.

The purpose of the internship period is to increase students’ knowledge and skills in medical laboratory diagnostics such as sero-immunology, bacteriology, parasitology, biochemistry, haematology and molecular biology.

UP Joined the Cambodian Eco Run

UP had a HUGE showing at the Cambodian Eco Run (5k or 10k) on 28 July. There were nearly 100 UP student participants as well as several UP staff. Many students completed a run for the first time, a huge achievement. English lecturer Leah Wood, who leads UP Running Club, said that she is “proud of the students who tried this for their first time” and that she looks forward to seeing students continue running in the future. If you see Leah, congratulate her for being the top female finisher in the 10k, with a time of 47:38.

Congratulations also to Pharmacy lecturer Eng Muyngim, the founder of We Run in Cambodia and the race organizer. It was the largest race that she has ever organized, but everything went smoothly. Muygnim said that is was “a great day” and is very proud that the UP community supported the race so strongly, with around 1/3 of the total runners. Look out for future races that Running Club will participate in, and join in next time!


Professor Chheng Srea – former Dean of Faculty of Odonto- Stomatology, UHS – and pioneer of dentistry in Cambodia following Pol Pot – with three UP dental students).

Dentistry in Cambodia has a long history that urgently should be documented, since most of the 34 dentists who survived Pol Pot are aging, and some have already passed away. With this in mind 4 student groups at UP have chosen this topic for their thesis. One group is looking at the history of dentistry in Cambodia before and during the Khmer Rouge regime. Another group is focusing on the period from 1979 until 1990. A third group is recording the what happened in the refugee camps, where many of those who fled the country received training in basic dentistry – many later returned to Cambodia.

The final group of students is writing the history of “traditional dentists” in Cambodia. This type of practitioner has been around for over 100 years, but is slowly dying out. The research involves detailed interviews with “survivors” about their recollections and experiences. The students have been amazed at what they have been told. At the end this worthwhile project we hope to produce a book containing the only written history of dentistry in Cambodia.

In this way the founders of dentistry in Cambodia will be remembered for generations to come and their stories will not be forgotten.

UP believes that we need to learn from the past to create a better future.

Science Youth Future!

Pirou Lay, year-2 pharmacy student, will attend the Asian Science Camp 2019 from July 28 to August 3, 2019 in Shantou, Guangdong province, China. During this program, nine plenary lectures will be given by Nobel Laureates and the Eminent Scientists.

This program will encourage students to think beyond the box and hopefully encourage UP students to become future Nobel laureates.

Besides attending the academic sessions, students will go on sightseeing trips and excursions to the historical Shantou. This trip is going to be a fantastic journey for Pirou to learn from the Nobel Laureates and explore China for the first time in his life!

Have a great journey, Pirou! We look forward to hearing your stories!


UP believes that best prepared graduates will get the best and highest paying jobs so The Department of Students Affairs and Partnerships recently held a two-part workshop for year 7 dental students. The workshop focused on how to write a good CV and how to interview effectively for a job. The trainers were Dr Maria Tucker (Director), Mr Meng Heng, Mr Buntith Sim and Ms Chanthy Chin.

The first session involved information sharing, role playing and discussion. At the second session in the Learning Lounge of the library, small groups of students presented their CVs to the trainers, and feedback was given. These sessions were really helpful in preparing students to apply for jobs as well as for postgraduate studies here and abroad.

In 2019, 24 pharmacy and medical students, together with medical doctors and professors from National University of Singapore (NUS), (ranked 1st in Asia and 22nd in the world according to the 2018 Times Higher Education World University Rankings), came to conduct a joint project called Project Lokun with 39 UP Pharmacy Students and UP Medical Students. The Lokun’s misson is to Cultivate, Connect, Care for the Cambodian village community.

• Cultivate: Educate villagers on good health practices
• Connect: Reconnect villagers back to their healthcare system
• Care: Provide acute care to through clinic initiatives

This joint community and clinical project provides students from the two universities with the chance to learn from each other on soft skills like leadership, critical thinking, project management, fund raising for project operation, teamwork, communication and other clinical skills in the community in Cambodia like communication with patients, patient education and counselling. Moreover, students also have chances to practice their English, which is a language of success after graduation. This project is held every year and has made great contributions to UP Pharmacy Students’ success so far.


UP is conducting a clinical trial on a new white dental material (Cention N), which may be a suitable alternative instead of the old silver amalgam fillings. This trial represents a significant land mark for UP as it is our first opportunity to work with an industry leader like Ivoclar-Vivadent company to conduct funded research that may impact how restorative care is provided in the future. The one year follow up results have mostly been completed, and show a very high success rate for the new fillings. Most of the participants in the trial are UP students who in addition to having fillings placed will receive free basic dental treatment and checkups for the next 3 years. Assistant Prof Soeun Sopharith and Dr Horn Rithvitou are doing the 1 and 2 year reviews of the restorations. The income from the trial is helping UP to improve its clinical facilities.