KDU Penang University College (KDU Penang) valedictorian Lee Kah Wei, 22, is finally reaping the rewards of his hard work.
Now a software programmer at Intel in Bayan Lepas, the fresh graduate looks back on the tough years of pursuing a computing degree while battling financial woes.
“During my student days, I had to work as a retail assistant.
“Money was tight for me despite obtaining a loan from PTPTN and the KDU Penang bursary.”
He is thankful that his course has taught him so much.
“I learned how to build websites and the different elements that come with them.
“It’s a truly practical skill and I am now able to do freelance work,” he said at KDU Penang’s convocation ceremony at Hotel Equatorial Penang.
Kah Wei’s father Lee Peng Hong, 52, a carpenter, and mother Ooi Ah Liew, 53, a housewife, were at the convocation to share his happiness.
Kah Wei said he hopes to either pursue his PhD or be part of start-ups.
KDU Penang’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts best student award recipient Nur Atiqah Mohamad Fozeli is also tasting sweet success.
The 21-year-old said it was her lecturer’s encouraging words that motivated her in her studies.
“I was always a shy person but the course has made me a more confident person,” said the Penangite.
Korean Song Da Eun, 21, who graduated with a Diploma in Nursing, looks forward to becoming a military nursing officer.
She was happy to be named the best student in the School of Nursing and Allied Health.
“I have been in Malaysia since I was 14 years old but it was my internship that really opened my eyes to the challenges of the language barrier.
“I decided to learn Bahasa Malaysia and Hokkien so I would be able to communicate better with patients,” she said, adding that she trained at Penang Hospital.
A total of 789 local and 36 international students received their scrolls at the ceremony.
Also present were KDU Penang vice-chancellor Prof Dr Chong Beng Keok and Keele University pro vice-chancellor Prof Jonathan Wastling.