Miri – 3 October 2011 – Education plays a vital role in strengthening Malaysia’s economic competitiveness, said Dato’ Sri Peter Chin Fah Kui, Minister of Energy, Green Technology & Water in his speech at the closing ceremony of the ‘Selangkah ke Universiti’ programme for secondary school students in Miri at Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak) recently. His speech was delivered by Member of Parliament for Sibuti, Tuan Haji Ahmad Lai.
Chin remarked that the nation’s vision of developing all-rounded individuals who are intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically capable is in line with the Malaysian National Education Philosophy (NEP).
“The Government’s effort in promoting education and training systems starting from early childhood to tertiary education aim to produce Malaysian citizens who are competent, possess high moral standards, responsible and capable of achieving a high level of personal well-being so as to contribute to the betterment of the family, the society and the nation at large,” said Chin.
He added that, under the Government Transformation Programme (GTP) established under the Malaysian Government’s Performance Management and Delivery Unit (PEMANDU), one of the six key priority areas to be developed under the National Key Results Areas (NKRAs) is Improving Student Outcomes. He said this portrayed the government’s stand in ensuring all Malaysians have the access to a quality education.
Chin also commended the Badan Amal dan Kebajikan Tenaga Isteri-Isteri (BAKTI) and the Ministry of Higher Education for organising the nationwide programme and choosing Curtin Sarawak to host the launching of the programme in Miri.
BAKTI and the ministry are collaborating with 14 institutions of higher learning (IPTA) across Malaysia on the programme, which aims to expose secondary school students to the university environment as well as highlight the importance of higher education for the betterment of their communities and the country as a whole.
Pro Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of Curtin Sarawak Professor Ian Kerr in his speech, meanwhile, stressed the need for students to take various factors into consideration before enrolling in universities as they could be critical to their future careers.
“Students need to be aware of what the universities offer in terms of entry requirements, academic programmes, campus life, leadership development and financial assistance, and in the long term, graduate employability and career prospects. Equally important are university rankings, government and worldwide recognition, as well as accreditation by professional bodies,” said Professor Kerr.
Professor Kerr reminded the students to be technology savvy and research smart, and to exploit all opportunities, in order to improve their marketability. He also urged them to commit themselves to a lifetime of continual learning.
200 students from nine secondary schools participated in the event. The closing ceremony was also attended by the Sarawak state-level ‘Selangkah ke Universiti’ organising chairperson Datin Sri Ruby Wee; Professor Alistair Inglis, Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor of Curtin Sarawak; representatives from the Resident’s Office, Miri District Office and Miri District Education Office, as well as principals from the participating schools.
The one-day event was facilitated by coordinators and student ambassadors of Curtin Young Associates (CYA), Curtin Sarawak’s exclusive club for secondary school students, in addition to staff of the university’s Marketing, University Life and Corporate Communications Departments and School of Engineering and Science. They conducted talks, games, quizzes and a campus tour, as well as shared their experiences.
For more information on Curtin Sarawak, visit its website at www.curtin.edu.my or e-mail [email protected].