MAKING the right tertiary education choice is important for Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) school leavers.
A total of 150 school leavers recently benefited from the #SLTalk2020 education seminar organised by Schoollah Malaysia in collaboration with Boost, Celcom and Yayasan Khazanah.
Participants were exposed to the newly improved single-window Central Unviersity Admission Unit (UP) system, education funding, the Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR4.0) and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET).
They were also introduced to marketable university courses and coached on scholarship application and interviews by several scholarship providers and scholars.
Participant Khadijah Zun ‘Arif Hakim, 18, said the talk was an eye opener.
“It cleared a lot of misconceptions, namely the benefits of a diploma, which I previously did not see as a choice, and the prospects of studying a language course. A speaker introduced TVET to us, emphasising its importance in IR4.0.”
She said she also benefited from talks by experienced speakers, such as officers from the Education Ministry’s Public Higher Education Institution Student Admission Division.
“Despite my interest in pursuing medicine, I learnt to diversify my interests and select more options in my UPU application.
“I’m sure other students will not get this kind of information from the Internet or have someone reliable to refer to,” said Khadijah, who is an alumna of MRSM Kota Putra in Terengganu.
Miqhail Harraz Huzairi, 18, a former MRSM Taiping student, joined the talk after being recommended by his senior.
“My senior learnt about the International Baccalaureate from last year’s talk. I plan to study in the United Kingdom and this seminar has introduced me to various scholarships, tips and information,” he said.
“During the UPU session, I discovered the UPUPocket app, which is beneficial for students like me.
“I also learnt about the different university paths taken by the speakers and how they achieved their goals.”
SMK Taman Setiawangsa alumnus Adam Mahmood Putera Zainuddin, 18, said: “I learnt a lot of new things today, which I would never learn at school, such as the programmes that can help me pursue my dream course, which is accounting. I think diploma is the right choice for me.”
Having struggled to find a suitable pathway to further his studies after SPM, Schoollah Malaysia founder Lukman Khiruddin was determined to help other students who faced the same problem like him.
“Coming from a regular school, I was not exposed to alternative pre-university programmes other than foundation studies, diploma courses and Form Six. After doing my own research, I went on to study A Level and ACCA.
“My juniors became interested and asked if I could help them, and that was how Schoollah Malaysia started.”
Together with four friends on the management team, the platform has grown to what it is today.
“Apart from #SLTalk, we also visit schools nationwide in our #SLTour, which targets students from the Bottom 40 (B40) group. These students lack alumni support and information on tertiary education routes.
“We hope to prepare participants for their higher education journey, as well as introduce IR4.0 and advocate TVET to the younger generation,” said Lukman, who is a financial analyst at a pharmaceutical company.
Aiming to attract 400 participants, the second edition of #SLTalk2020 will be held on March 7 at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
Since its inception in 2014, Schoollah Malaysia has impacted thousands of school leavers through personal consultations, #SLTalk and #SLTour series and social media engagement.