OUM 19th Convocation

SOME 6,470 graduates were all smiles when they received their scrolls at the Open University Malaysia (OUM) 19th Convocation recently.

Held at the Putra World Trade Centre (PTWC) from Oct 31 to Nov 3, the graduates of various disciplines were conferred their scrolls, from Doctor of Philosophy to Bachelor with Honours.

Among these graduates, Lee Shan Ling and Choo Min Wey, who earned the Master of Education and Bachelor of Teaching (Primary Education) with Honours degrees, were given the President's Award. While the Lifelong Learning Award was given to 71-year old Harry P Isaacs, who graduated with a Bachelor of Education (Teaching English as a Second Language) with Honours.

Choo, 48, who is a teacher in SJK(C) Bercham, was excited to graduate from the university, adding that she worked hard for her degree. “I had to manage my time juggling family, teaching and studying ... and I am very excited to see this day,” said the teacher with 26 years experience.

Another graduate who turned up at the convocation was former beauty pageant Dr Soo Wincci, who earned her Doctor of Philosophy (Business Administration) after studying in OUM for six years.

“Being from the entertainment line, I want to contribute to our own industry, and help other artists out. “And education is the way to go ... this is something I have dreamed about,” the Miss Malaysia World 2008 told a press conference recently.

Soo also made her mark in the Malaysia Book of Records by being the first Miss Malaysia to receive a PhD.

OUM Vice-Chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mansor Fadzil, who was present at the press conference, was proud to have Soo as one its graduates in the university's 19th convocation.

“We are happy, that even celebrities are able to take our flexible approach to work and study at the same time, without neglecting their family, work, and community.

“It is not impossible to do it,” he said.

Meanwhile, OUM Board of Directors chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye concurs with Mansor’s view, saying that OUM is concerned about providing education for Malaysians, regardless of age.

“OUM is an education institution which can offer a lot of opportunities to those who were not given the chance to study when they were younger,” he added.

To date, OUM has a cumulative student enrolment of about 150,000. Over 70,000 have graduated since it was established in 2001.