BY JOANNE LIM
BRIGHT, attentive and exceptionally gifted” is what his teachers think of him.
In was no surprise to his peers either, when Tan Chin Lik of Kolej Matrikulasi Yayasan Satu (KMYS) in Lembah Beringin, Selangor, received the college's Scholar of the Year Award from Education Minister Tan Sri Musa Mohamad last weekend. He also received the Subject Award for Physics.
Chin Lik, 20, will also be the first from his college to study for a medical degree at Cambridge University in Britain.
“Since I was five years old, I have had my mind set on becoming a doctor and I am excited to spend the next five years of my life in Cambridge,” he said.
Obtaining 10 A1s in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia examination, he went on to excel academically at KMYS, achieving a string of As in all four semesters of the A-Level programme.
“I feel very honoured and am extremely grateful to my parents, teachers, and friends who have all played a vital role in my success,” said the Public Services Department scholar.
The Scholar of the Year Award is given to students who excel academically and are active in extra-curricular activities.
The youngest of three siblings, Chin Lik who hails from Penang, said he was pleasantly surprised two years ago to find that KMYS was an hour away from the capital, nestled beside a golf-course.
“I enjoy the seclusion because it provides a very conducive atmosphere and I am able to concentrate on my studies,” said Chin Lik, whose mother is a primary school teacher and father a technician.
When he's not with his books, Chin Lik enjoys all kinds of activities. “I realise the importance of striking a balance between studies and other activities. My timetable is very flexible – I set a target for what I intend to finish revising and until I'm done with that, I will not spend time on anything else,” he said.
In college, he was a stalwart of the Chinese Club, an active member of his house committee, and a member of the editorial board. His favourite pastimes are badminton, squash, football and photography, which keep him gainfully occupied and fit, besides improving his organisational and managerial skills.
During a recent ecological trip to the Endau-Rompin jungle, he conducted field experiments and helped organise a health carnival for the indigenous Jakun tribe.
Chin Lik is also a qualified first-aider and a poolside lifeguard with a bronze medallion from the Malaysian Lifesaving Association.
Also active in voluntary work as a boy scout, he has gained invaluable insight into the hardships and suffering of the needy, hence his interest in studying medicine.
His keen involvement in extra-curricular and house activities have won him the silver award in the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award for Young People.
“He is a pleasant student who likes to help his friends and his teachers feel privileged to teach such a fine student,” said KMYS English Department liaison officer Noor Zaidi Mohd Noor.
To his juniors, Chin Lik advised: “There's more to life than just studying. Everyone is destined for better things, if only you give yourself a chance.”