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UNIMAS PRO -CHANCELLOR'S SPEECH AT CONVOCATION


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Improve standards, universities told

By Jacob Achoi

Borneo Post Online

KOTA SAMARAHAN: Universities have been told to continuously improve the quality of their programmes and administration in line with global demands.

Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud said it was necessary that universities implement performance audit to the teaching and learning process, research and
development, and professional service, which would become a yardstick for global competitiveness.

He said universities were important development instrument for Malaysia to create and prepare quality human capital needed to achieve its vision of becoming a developed nation.

“It is also equally important for universities to continuously improve their standards to gain international respect,” Taib told students, parents and lecturers attending the Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) 12th Convocation at its old campus here yesterday.

Taib, who is Unimas pro-chancellor, stressed that the role and direction of universities had changed tremendously,compared to three decades ago.

According to him, the present universities must contribute towards the development of quality human capital to meet local and global needs.

Taib stressed that the opening of national borders would result in free flow of goods, services, information and people.

He said universities could help prepare for such free movement by preparing generations for open competition.

In other words, he said, universities could become agents in helping foster global integration, mutual understanding and world peace.

In the past Malaysian students went overseas to further their studies, today that situation had changed. Many foreign students are studying in the country now because local higher education institutions and universities have the facilities to meet their demand. Taib noted that Unimas is in the process of implementing the National Higher Education Strategic Plan launched by the Ministry of Higher Education in August last year.

He was confident the university would soon become the state’s education portal and go on to become the pride of the state and the country. Taib called on lecturers to conduct more research of international standard and network with foreign experts.

He commended the parents for investing in their children’s education, saying he recognised their sacrifices, more so when cost of living was becoming a heavier burden.

To the graduates, he said they should not stop learning after graduation but to continuously do self-improvement to meet the demands of the job market.

Among those present were Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department Datin Fatimah Abdullah, chairman of Unimas board of directors Tan Sri Datuk Amar Bujang Mohd Nor and vice-chancellor Prof Dr Khairuddin Abdul Hamid.

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