After completing her education at the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) and Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) University in Viet Nam with a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree, Vu Huong Giang attended a course run by the world-famous Matchmaking Institute (MMI) in the USA. Subsequently, she was a student of Sue Rosenbaum, one of the world's best-known matchmakers. Recently, she became the first Vietnamese person to be officially recognised as a professional matchmaker. Phung Nguyen met her for an interview.
Inner Sanctum: Matchmakers are no strangers to Vietnamese society, but isn't it odd to go all the way to America to study matchmaking?
As a post-graduate from RMIT, I spent three years working as a marketing and business consultant for many multinational corporations in Viet Nam. After that, I started a family business dealing in jewellery and also ran a private company that provided image consultancy services. I also graduated from an institute of image consultancy and became an image consultant, which is a new profession in Viet Nam.
At present, MMI is the only institute that provides professional training as well as a degree in matchmaking. The institute also teaches ways to communicate with clients and analyse the clients' characteristics by talking to them.
Matchmakers can understand clients easily and are in a good position to choose the perfect match for them.
My mother inspired me to become a matchmaker. She has brought together many young men and women who, she felt, were made for each other. Many of these couples are now happily married.
Inner Sanctum: Do you think an international certification will help differentiate Love Station from other matchmaking services in Viet Nam?
I think it is a huge advantage that Love Station is being run by two people who are the first Vietnamese to get an international certificate in matchmaking. Offering matchmaking services to help people seek their true love is not new. In America, especially, the service is widely used. What Love Station wishes to provide to the clients is not just the mindset of "I think I will get along with him or her", but it is also a scientific analysis of personality.
Inner Sanctum: Many people doubt the credibility of matchmaking services and are afraid of being misinformed or misled. What is your take on this?
Anyone who comes to Love Station through the website Lovestation.com.vn is interviewed at the office. The interview helps the matchmakers to assess the clients' personality and look for an appropriate match. The information that the clients provide is verified, so no one can get away with giving us false information. Love Station focuses on the true identity of those who wish to find partners.
Moreover, in order to discourage frivolous cases, we only take on clients who have graduated from university, and they are required to hand over a copy of their diploma. Certainly, this kind of information is reliable.
Based on the interviews, we schedule a date for couples who we think are best suited to each other. Before they commit to the date, they are provided image consultancy services and are given suggestions on ways to impress their partners from the very beginning.
Inner Sanctum: What, in your opinion, is the scope for matchmaking services in Viet Nam at present?
I think there is a great need for such services. This is because Vietnamese society is still developing, and everyone is busy with their own careers these days. However, this is not the only reason that people are lonely nowadays and need to get in touch with others. People still have their social relationships. Other reasons are pervasive: workaholism, the limitations of the work environment, the habit of not frequently communicating with others, or a reserved nature.
Inner Sanctum: What is the feedback from your clients on the services you provide?
Well, there are couples who fell for each other and got married after meeting each other through Love Station. For instance, Thuy and Chinh, who were once complete strangers, are now a perfect couple and also have a pretty baby boy. Another man named Tuan, whose wife passed away, leaving him with two sons, asked Love Station to introduce him to a partner on the condition that she never give birth. After initial setbacks, we finally managed to find him a young teacher who was infertile and wanted to meet a man who did not want children.
As a matchmaker, I am usually asked if I am meddling with fate, but I respond that it is fate that brings people to Love Station. To me, the biggest upside of this job has been the number of people I have been able to connect. — VNS