Undergraduate focus: New horizons for foundation students
WITH increased pressure in a technology driven world, students have to constantly ensure they are exposed to the best in educational opportunities at their place of study. Dhanesh Balakrishnan, Dean of the Faculty of Pre-University Studies, HELP University, says education is not necessarily in the academic arena but also the development of leadership and management skills.
One such example was a trip to Korea last year, where HELP Matriculation Centre Foundation students had to opportunity to study the culture and the work ethics of Koreans.
Dhanesh feels it is important to expose students to the culture of work in other countries such as Korea where workers display a tremendous amount of respect for their work.
He adds that one of the aspects of the HMC Foundation at HELP is the HELP Matriculation Centre Leadership and Development Sphere (HMC LEADS). The programme offers students the opportunity to develop their leadership and personality skills which is necessary in today’s workplace.
Rachael Lai Suet Teng, a student of the HMC Foundation last year, won an International Excellence Scholarship from Royal Holloway, University of London for Bachelor of Music (Hons). She is one such example of a success story. With a total of seven distinctions in the Foundation of Arts programme, she is testimony to the versatility of the HMC Foundation programme.
“The research papers we had to write for English, psychology, business and marketing in the foundation programme prepared me well for the essays I now write. I have no problems conducting research with proper referencing and I am confident of what needs to be done,” says Rachael.
According to Dhanesh, the programme structure covers both a Foundation in Science and Arts and students can choose either foundation which cover subjects such as computing principles, study skills, leadership, critical thinking skills, intermediate English and finite mathematics.
As an internationally linked foundation programme, foundation students have direct entry to universities such as Flinders, Monash, Murdoch, Swinburne University of Technology, University of New South Wales and University of Queensland in Australia, the University of Cardiff, University of Leeds, University of Surrey in the UK and, Massey University and University of Canterbury in New Zealand for entry to various disciplines.
For programmes such as psychology, foundation students can complete the HELP-Flinders University joint degree or complete the final year at Australia National University, University of Ballarat, Curtin University of Technology, Deakin University among others.
For those students who have obtained excellent SPM results but are experiencing financial difficulty, HELP offers two types of scholarships. One is based on merit and the other provides financial assistance for those students who cannot afford to pay their fees.
For more information on the foundation programmes at HELP, www.help.edu.my