‘HAVE FAITH IN OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM’
Malaysian varsities on a par with world’s best, says deputy minister
THE Higher Education Ministry is calling on the public to restore and build their confidence in the quality of education provided by local public and private higher learning institutions.
In her speech at the closing ceremony of this year’s National Higher Education Carnival at Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) here on Saturday, the ministry’s deputy minister, Datuk Dr Mary Yap Kain Ching, said many local public and private universities were on a par with, and some were even above, the world’s top academic institutions abroad.
“This is proven by the success of five universities making it to the Top 50 for 11 best courses offered, while seven more made it to the Top 100 for 52 out of 100 courses,” she said.
“Those universities are Universiti Malaya, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Universiti Putra Malaysia, International Islamic University of Malaysia and Taylor’s University.”
Yap said such achievements were in line with the ministry’s aspirations to produce graduates who were knowledgeable and highly competent in their field of studies, which would help them become job creators, and not just job seekers.
“Graduates have to be innovative and self-driven to acquire outstanding cognitive abilities like analytical and critical thinking in problem-solving, being multilingual to enhance their communication skills and be technology savvy.
“At the same time, they must continue to preserve their moral values and principles to better contribute to society, country and the world.”
The National Higher Education Carnival is in its 12th year running. It was first held in 2005.
USIM was selected to host the central and final zone, and this year’s closing ceremony, after a nationwide tour in Kota Baru, Kelantan; at Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, and Universiti Malaysia Perlis, Perlis; and in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, and Kuching, Sarawak.
Yap said there were four main reasons why the ministry held the carnival annually.
Firstly, it was to facilitate dissemination of information on formal higher educational pursuits at universities, colleges and institutions (both public and private) to the public and Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia and Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia school leavers.
“The three other reasons are to promote current and new programmes offered (including distance learning, part-time and short-term courses) at universities, colleges and institutions (both public and private), create awareness of the availability of informal life-long learning programmes and highlight the online enrolment application via UPUOnline at http://upu.mohe.gov.my, which is open to the public from Feb 6 to April 5,”
She said the tagline for this year’s carnival was “Jom Masuk IPT” (Let’s Enrol into Institutions of Higher Learning) and it involved public and private universities, polytechnics, private, community and matriculation colleges, public institutions of vocational training and teachers education, as well as the National Higher Education Fund, Malaysian Qualifications Agency and other sponsors.
The carnival was joined by nonacademic ministries like Agriculture and Agro-based Industries; Women, Family and Community Development; Human Resources; and Plantation Industries and Commodities Ministries, which also offered lifelong learning programmes to the public.
Present at the closing ceremony were USIM Vice-Chancellor Professor Datuk Dr Musa Ahmad, the Higher Education Ministr y ’s dire ctor-general Datin Paduka Dr Siti Hamisah Tapsir, its deputy secretary-general (development), Datuk Nik Ali Mat Yunus, and deputy-secretary general (management) Datuk Kamel Mohamad; and Community College Education Department director-general Datuk Amir Md Noor.
Visitors at the National Higher Education Carnival at Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia in Nilai on Saturday. (Inset) Deputy Higher Education Minister Datuk Dr Mary Yap Kain Ching.