renews ties and presents Best Graduate Award

Prof Ewe (left) and Gan (right) with the signed MoU

Front row, from left: Best Graduate Award recipients Tan, Shum and Lee
Second row, from left: Prof Yow, Prof Ewe, Gan and Calvin Chan
Third row, from left: Lim, Nik Zaitun, Adrian Kam and Chua

UTAR and Agensi Pekerjaan Sdn Bhd ( renewed their ties by signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on 25 August 2020 at Sungai Long Campus.

The signatories were UTAR President Ir Prof Dr Ewe Hong Tat and JobStreet Malaysia Country Manager Gan Bock Herm. It was witnessed by UTAR Vice President for Internationalisation and Academic Development Ir Prof Dr Yow Ho Kwang and JobStreet Malaysia Employability & Social Media Lead Calvin Chan.

Also present at the event were JobStreet Malaysia Head of Marketing Adrian Kam, JobStreet Malaysia Customer Solutions Specialist Chua Kuang Eu, UTAR Examinations, Awards and Scholarships Director Nik Zaitun binti Nik Salleh, Department of Alumni Relations and Placement Head Lim Swea Jen and recipients of Best Graduate Award Tan Han Wu from Faculty of Business and Finance (FBF), Shum Mei Kee from Faculty of Arts and Social Science (FAS), and Lee Woei Hao from Faculty of Accountancy and Management (FAM).  

The MoU signing aimed to renew the award of “ Best Graduate Award” for best UTAR graduate in each faculty, each year, for another three (3) years (2020 – 2022). It also enables both parties to explore and conduct joint research collaboration activities, as well as joint academic-industrial collaborative activities including conferences, webinar, workshops, publications, and seminars.

Prof Ewe thanking for supporting UTAR since 2010

Speaking at the ceremony, Prof Ewe said, “Today is certainly a very significant day for both parties as we continue to strengthen ties between UTAR and for more collaborative opportunities. I am glad that this collaboration will promote knowledge exchange, recruitment and job opportunity information, and networking for our UTAR students. Also, the career page at that would help fresh graduates applies for internships and related jobs relevant to them.”

“I would also like to thank for supporting UTAR since 2010. The Best Graduate Award was first presented in August 2010 to the best overall graduate in the year for each faculty. This award has been presented annually since August 2010 and I would like to sincerely thank for your generosity to our graduates and for your recognition of their academic achievements,” added Prof Ewe.

Gan sharing the situation of the current job market

Sharing the situation of the current job market, Gan said, “The current job market is challenging for both experienced workers as well as fresh graduates as companies are taking steps to review their operations amid the Covid-19 pandemic and the lockdowns. However, we have since seen the progressive recovery of the job market with restrictions being eased. The numbers of fresh graduate job have increased by 300 per cent during this period, bringing the total number of available fresh graduate jobs to over 1,700.”

“From a recent JobStreet Covid-19 survey, findings indicated that 25 per cent of the employers surveyed will be looking to hire again in the next 6 months and this will include fresh graduates. Based on the research, the top five industries still hiring are information technology, food and beverage, science and technology, government and health, and safety sectors. The MCO had changed the way companies need to operate in order to survive; skills related to digital and IT are highly sought after; fresh graduate also need to remain “driven” and be proactive in securing employment,” said Gan.

From left: Prof Ewe and Gan during the ceremony

Apart from the MoU signing, and UTAR presented Best Graduate Awards to students from nine faculties and one institute. The recipients were Tan, Shum, Lee, Ong Ee Hung from the Faculty of Creative Industries (FCI), Kee Wee Boon from the Faculty of Engineering and Green Technology (FEGT), Ang Cheng Kee from the Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (FICT), Kheu Siek Chin from the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences (FMHS), Ooi Gia Wen from the Faculty of Science (FSc), Koe Jia Chi from Lee Kong Chian Faculty of Engineering and Science (LKC FES) and Eng Sher Lee from the Institute of Chinese Studies (ICS). These exceptional graduates were selected based on the best CGPA results in the faculty for the whole year- ie the best overall results from both March and August batch of graduates.

Gan (middle) presenting the Best Graduate Award to Lee (right) as Prof Ewe (left) looks on

Gan (middle) presenting the Best Graduate Award to Shum (right) as Prof Ewe (left) looks on

Gan (middle) presenting the Best Graduate Award to Tan (right) as Prof Ewe (left) looks on

Lee thanking his lecturers for their teaching and guidance

FAM graduate Lee said, “I was surprised when I heard the news that I was awarded the Best Graduate Award. I am thankful to the lecturers who have taught me to improve my critical thinking skills. I am also grateful to them for giving me the opportunity to justify my judgment in the assignments.”

“I believe that it is important to have a solid foundation of theoretical knowledge, however, gaining various practical experiences are equally important as it enables us to build a stronger career pathway. Apart from that, be daring to pursue the things that you are passionate about and see things from a different perspective. In the near future, I would like to gain more experience in my current work and also to venture into internal audits as I expand my career path,” said Lee who is currently working as an audit associate at Allan Ong & Co. PLT, Chartered Accountants. 

Tan sharing some tips to excel in studies

FBF graduate Tan said, “I am feeling so proud to be awarded the best graduate of FBF this year. This is definitely a great recognition for me. I have successfully gained this award after working hard for four continuous years. Hence, I would like to take this opportunity to motivate my juniors and peers to excel in their academic studies. Remember, your success comes with your decision. Always believe and you will achieve your dreams someday.

Tan also shared some tips and advice to excel in studies, “Firstly, be sure to pay attention in the classroom. Secondly, be diligent in doing revision, especially before the exam. Thirdly, consult your lecturer or tutor if you have any doubts in your academic study. I would also like to remind you to give yourself a rest by participating in extracurricular activities such as competitions, events, etc. It’s definitely a good exposure for you to learn and experience new things. University life is definitely one thing you will miss after you start working. Thus, remember to study hard and play hard!”

“I am looking forward to jobs that relate to financial analysis, consulting, and problem-solving. I also planned to further my studies up to PhD and complete my Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®) Program in the near future based on my career needs and development,” said Tan as he shared his thoughts on building his career.

Shum shared time management is very important as a student

FAS graduate Shum said, “I was surprised when I heard the news that I was awarded the Best Graduate Award. My parents were very proud of me as I am the only child in my family. It was a very touching moment for me to know that I have made them proud. It is definitely a great recognition for me and this means a lot.”

“I was a transferred student back then. Being a new student in UTAR, I had to put in a lot of effort to stay on track. I realised that in order to excel in my studies, I cannot depend on my lecture notes alone. I had to fully utilise the library’s resources such as the reference book as well as other reading materials. After my classes, I would usually go to the library to do my revision. Other than that, time management is very important for a student.  It helps to balance our study life and leisure time and enables us to become more organised,” said Shum as she shared some study tips.

“I wish to venture into the education industry. I could do home tutoring or set up a tuition centre. Currently, I am assisting my family with their business and also working as a home tutor. I am also planning to either continue my master’s degree or take up some other education courses to give me more opportunity in the education industry,” said Shum.

The signing ceremony ended with a souvenir exchange between Prof Ewe and Gan, followed by a group photography session.

Prof Ewe (left) presenting souvenirs to Gan

Prof Ewe (left) receiving souvenirs from Gan

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