Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Education Roadshow Summer 2006

Since starting this blog back in April, I have been extremely encouraged by the number of individuals who have expressed interest in helping Malaysian students in pursuing their education at the top universities overseas.

In my earlier post on setting up a non-profit organisation to facilitate and promote education and other related issues, I have mentioned an alumni of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) who was keen to mentor students in their application to the top universities in the United States (US). Subsequently, I have also received an email from a fairly well known Malaysian entrepreneur and an alumni of Cambridge expressing keen interest in taking part.

Just over the holiday weekend, I met up with a current postgraduate student of Harvard University, as well as an alumni of MIT who proposed a SAT scholarhip scheme for top SPM students keen on pursuing an education at the top US universities. This will sit well together with the mentorship programme which we intend to set up as part of this non-profit organisation set up.

Also during this little discussion, we were joined by another MIT alumni who is currently an associate professor and dean of Information Technology at one of the local private universities. Apparently, he is working out a "terms of reference" for some scholarships which will be funded by certain wealthy individuals for top performing Malaysian students to pursue education at the top universities overseas.

And now, through TinKosong, Vanessa Chan, currently a freshman at University of California @ Berkeley is seeking like-minded individuals to join her on a education roadshow around the country to promote and elaborate the mechanics and route to gaining entry into some of the top universities overseas.

In a gist, the Roadshow preliminary details are:
When: Summer 2006 (May - September 2006)

Where: All around secondary schools in Malaysia

What: Promoting alternate ways of obtaining higher education to students in secondary schools in Malaysia. We give them the information they need on admissions, financial aid, scholarships etc.

Who: Anyone studying outside Malaysia who wants to share experiences and encourage more Malaysians to aply to their university/country. Anyone who wants to be a part of a good thing. Anyone who wants to have fun and be doing something worthwhile as well.
The blogpost has more details such as additional Q&As on what the event will entail. For those interested, please feel free to contact Vanessa at vanessachan at for more details. I will be in touch with Vanessa separate to see how I can be of assistance :-)

As highligted in my New Year post, I do hope to get some critical large business contracts out of the way in this couple of weeks for my firm, and I will be able to spend more time to make this non-profit organisation idea a reality. Fingers crossed, but this shall be my "New Year Resolution 2006".

Sigh. How I wish I was 18 again...


Anonymous said...

I think it only applies to American universities....

XXX said...

hm.. are you sure the government allows you all to technically invade the schools to do so?


Anonymous said...

Cambridge, MIT, Oxford, CalTech, you name it. Be accepted in those schools and you're in the 'game'. If you don't then...

Anonymous said...

I think you just need to talk to the pricipals of the schools concerned followed by a letter.


Anonymous said...

Jason - there are definitely more good unis in the US than those three. Where do you think most of the American students are going?

?|? - like banana said, just ask the principal for permission. I managed to give a talk (rather, ramble) about life after school to my ex-secondary school just by asking my ex-HM for some time.

Tiara (who can't log in for some reason)

Anonymous said...

Hello all! This is Vanessa, the one who's trying to set up a team for the roadshow.

To answer some queries : no we will not be invading the schools, we will be in contact with the administration. Based on last year's affirmative feedback from the various schools the roadshow visited, I don't forsee any problems. We just hope to expand the number of schools involved this year.

Jason Cheah: that is exactly what the roadshow aims to disclaim. Some of our participants indeed attend the Ivies and the Oxbridge schools and will be more than happy to provide you whatever information you want regarding applications. But we are not limiting our scope to those schools only. We want to show you what opportunites are available after SPM .. ALL opportunities, including applications to Oxbridge and the Ivies, but not limited to those universities. We aim to involve all sorts of education opportunities - from scholarships, to uuniversity sponsored financial aid, to exchange programs, and we want to show the means to garner information and funding for such programs.

Tony: Thank you for the plug, and leep in touch!

Anonymous said...

Yes, please enlighten the Malaysian high school students on their options both locally and abroad.

Anonymous said...


There is a lot of options right? Will that instead confuse them and in the end they don't know where to go?

Anonymous said...

Better be informed than ignorant, no?

Anonymous said...

Every effort in opening doors to excellent overseas education to Malaysian students is a wonderful and worthy effort. Congratulations!

Many old boys and old girls associations of high schools in Malaysia would certainly welcome your Roadshow and work with you.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Hi Tony, Vanessa:

I would like to help by providing a Canadian perspective in your forum for all Malaysian friends.

As for the Summer 2006 Roadshow, arrangements can be made when Vanessa has finalized the schedule.

Tony, I am for your proposal on the Non-Profit Organisation on Education for Malaysians.

Anonymous said...

Isn't SPM students aa rather early target? Most top American schools require 12 years of schooling (Form 5 is the 11th year), all UK universities require GCE A Levels/Scottish Advanced Higher National/equilevent to enter as an undergraduate, as with top universities in Australia (like ANU), Japan (Univ of Tokyo), and elsewhere.

Needless to say, most SPM students - unless they get JPA or GLC scholarships, need to undergo pre-uni students on their own...

But great idea. I may not be bright (STPM forecast CGPA: 2.17), but there are many bright students with perfect or near-perfect scores going to mediocre local and overseas unis.

For American education at top American universities (as in Harvard, Princeton, Yale, etc.), there is odd mentality amongst bright students to prefer elsewhere because the course is shorter or so that they won't be a year older than their coursemates. Good luck with handling that mentality :-p

Nick Khaw said...

If people're gonna turn down schools like Harvard, Princeton and Yale just because they'll be a year older than their course mates, they can't be that very bright after all.