Aiming for greater heights
ILIKE a challenge,” said Khairul Akmal Samsuddin when asked why he decided to enrol in the Diploma in Aircraft Maintenance Engineering programme at Nilai University, after having received a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering from another institution.
“I felt that the Aircraft Maintenance Engineering programme offers a more defined career path. Also, I have always been interested in aircraft.”
He points to a TV show on air disasters, saying it ignited his passion for flying machines.
“The programme showed how just one careless mistake can have horrific consequences. It underlined the great responsibilities of an aircraft maintenance engineer.”
Khairul said he decided to enrol in Nilai University (Nilai U) despite being offered a chance to pursue professional training with a domestic airline.
“I told my sponsors that I wanted to get my EASA qualification. I also wanted to study in a university campus, instead of a training centre.
“I wanted the full university experience with extracurricular activities and the opportunity to make friends from all over the world,” said the 22-year-old from Segamat, Johor.
Nilai U’s Diploma in Aircraft Maintenance Engineering programme prepares students for the all-important European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) B1-1 examination, which is the gateway towards becoming a fully licensed aircraft maintenance engineer.
A person with this licence will be authorised to certify aircraft as worthy and will be much soughtafter the world over.
“That is the main reason I chose Nilai U. I want a qualification which serves as a ticket for me to work in other countries and gain more knowledge from working in different environments,” he said.
His mechanical engineering diploma gives him an edge in some of the modules.
“I suppose I’m finding it a little bit easier than the rest in the Maths and Physics modules. But I’m still working extra hard as this programme is not easy and the EASA exams have a high passing mark,” he said.
Besides the EASA qualification, Khairul said he’s impressed with the facilities at Nilai U.
It is one of few institutions offering this programme to have its own purpose-built hangar with two airplanes, allowing students to have a better understanding of the workings of modern aircraft. The hangar is also equipped with a workshop and classrooms.
Khairul, who is part of the pioneer batch of Felda scholars to enrol in this programme, hoped more Felda scholars would join him.
He said students should not be deterred by the perceived level of difficulty in passing the programme’s exams.
“We must learn to work hard now and we can enjoy the fruits of our labour later. I also tell my friends and juniors not to be intimidated by the fact that the programme is taught in English. After listening to lecturers and talking to classmates in English for some time, it will not be a hindrance at all,” he said.
The young lad’s determination can be seen through his plans to complete the Advanced Diploma in Aircraft Engineering programme as well, an option which he said was worthwhile as students would gain a degree from Kingston University, UK with just another year’s study.
“The job market is competitive. Although the EASA qualification remains the priority, a degree will certainly mark you out from the rest as having something extra.
“I intend to live my dream of being an aviation industry professional. I have come this far, so why not go all the way?” he added.
Nilai U’s Advanced Diploma in Aircraft Engineering programme is a one-year top-up programme open to graduates of the Diploma in Aircraft Maintenance Engineering programme.
Successful students who complete the Advanced Diploma and relevant bridging modules are recognised by Kingston University as having completed the syllabus identical to their degree programme. Thus, they will be awarded a degree by Kingston University.
For more information, go to www.nilai.edu.my or type “Nilai University”on Facebook. Alternatively, call 06-850 2308, 07-226 2336 or 03-7960 3089.
Khairul is impressed with the facilities at Nilai University.