A humanitarian engineer, advocate for people with a disability, mentor, entrepreneur and traveller, Huy is changing the face of disability access in Australia and the Pacific.
Having contracted polio as a baby in Vietnam and using a wheelchair to get around since coming to Australia as a child, Huy understands that physical environments can exclude people. Knowing this, he is determined to play his part in breaking down the barriers to a more inclusive society.
Using his personal experiences, Huy combines innovative approaches across system and humanitarian engineering with community development to empower people with disabilities. Huy’s work is not limited to Australia, with his contributions extending to the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Timor-Leste (East Timor).
Huy is the founder and CEO of Enable Development, a social enterprise working on the challenges of disability, and the founder of EnableCanberra, an online resource which helps people with access requirements plan their visits to Canberra’s national institutions.
Huy is currently leading a project that is looking to reduce the costs of disability aids and allow end users to become more involved with designing and selecting aids appropriate to them.
Huy’s engineering degree at ANU provided the ‘systems’ approach that has underpinned most of his work since graduating in 2010. This combines technical engineering design approaches with broader user, management, social and stakeholder considerations.
Since graduation, Huy has maintained close links with ANU. He provides guest lectures on his experiences and views of systems engineering, and was involved with a 2011 ANU Vice-Chancellor Teaching Enhancement Grant which jointly developed a set of learning kits that have been used in courses at ANU, other universities in Australia and training programs internationally. He also supports engineering students with guidance in their research and studies.
Huy’s work in Australia and overseas has been recognised with the ACT Young Australian of the Year for 2014 award.