Vietnamese UCLA Professor Gives Students Stuffed Animals Every Week to Show He Cares

vietnamese professor

A Vietnamese professor at UCLA has been getting massive love on social media after one of his students “exposed” his unique teaching routine online. 

Quyen Di Chuc Bui, who leads the Vietnamese language program at the university, regularly lets his students know that he loves them by giving them stuffed animals every week. Whenever he sends each one of them an email, he never forgets to tell them how much he cares at the end, the Daily Bruin reports. 

Social media came to know about Chuc Bui’s loving gestures after one of his students took a video of him handing out the stuffed animals and then uploaded it on Twitter. The video has since generated over 7.8 million views and over 700,000 likes.

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Chuc Bui said he started the weekly gift-giving tradition five years ago to motivate his introductory class students to learn and make them happy. Chuc Bui hands out a stuffed animal to a group as a reward after a successful class presentation.

“I care about my students a lot and want to find out what they want,” he was quoted as saying. “After asking (students), I know every student likes stuffed animals, especially bears.”

As for his advanced classes, he brings food for them instead. He usually brings treats from Vietnam such as spring rolls and java apples.

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“I would like to give my students love before I teach (them) something,” he said. “I think the way to the heart is shorter than the way to the mind. So I get my students’ heart first, then I get their mind.”

According to Amy Nguyen, the pre-psychology student who posted the video, she found Chuc Bui’s gesture to be quite adorable, so she captured the moment on camera. And when she uploaded the video on social media, everyone agreed that Chuc Bui is a one-of-a-kind teacher.

Nguyen said she was surprised how the stuffed toys kept coming week after week.

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“I thought it was super sweet and I didn’t think he would continue doing it, but he kept doing it,” she noted.

Nguyen explained that she has become accustomed to the professors who do not engage much with their students.

Image via UCLA

“Giving stuffed animals out is really sweet and touching; it shows he really cares,” she added. “It makes me feel like I’m not just another student and like he’s really dedicated to our learning (and well-being).”

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Chuc Bui received the Asian Heritage Award for Innovation in 2016 for his special way of teaching Vietnamese to both college students and volunteer community teachers.

More importantly, his gestures have not gone unnoticed among his students as he is generally loved by those who attended his classes, based on feedback left by his students on Rate My Professors.

“Prof. Bui is an established and respected writer within the Vietnamese community and has been for many years–my mom used to read his stories and loved them! It’s such an honor to be his student,” a commenter shared.

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“I cannot love this man enough, he is one of the most caring professors I’ve ever had. The way he enjoys teaching his students is just making the class so much easier to pass and fun,” one user wrote.

“Professor Bui is one of the sweetest man you will meet. As a Vietnamese American, he is well respected throughout the Little Saigon area,” another revealed.

Feature Image via @lilmcnugs

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