GETTING only a Sijil Am Pelajaran or SAP (General Statement) the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia exam did not deter Mathan Mohan Chelladorai from pursuing his academic goals.
PTPL College’s best student and third-time President’s List Award recipient, Mathan knows that with hard work and determination, setbacks can be stepping-stones to success.
Aspiring to be a cardiologist, the second-year Diploma in Medical Laboratory Technology (DMLT) student scored the maximum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 4.0 in two semesters and a 3.95 in another. He is also president of the DMLT Club at PTPL Shah Alam.
“I want to change and work really hard to excel in my studies. I will not disappoint my parents again,” says Mathan, adding that he thought he “knew how to study” after obtaining 6As and a B in the Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) examination.
“Being overconfident resulted in my grades declining. I was also involved in too many co-curricular activities, such as being Red Crescent Society and Quarter Master president, prefect, and Interact Club committee member,” he adds.
As he was not accepted into Form Six, Mathan worked as a waiter at a fast-food joint. “I found that people did not respect me because of the SAP. I was ordered around like a nobody,” adds the eldest of four siblings.
Mathan received thunderous applause when he was named the college’s best student at an award presentation ceremony last week.
“I want to excel and become a successful cardiologist one day. I have always been fascinated with the physiology of the heart as it is the first organ formed in a foetus,” says Mathan.
He was among 374 students from six of the college’s branches, who received the President’s List Award from Mara director-general Datuk Zamani Mohd Nor at the ceremony. Of the total, about 100 students receive sponsorship from Mara.
The award is given to students who obtained a GPA of 3.5 and above for the semester. “Our aim is to have at least 50% of our students receive the award every semester,” says PTPL president Datuk Mohd Shukri Abdul Yajid.
Students with a GPA of 3.75 and above for three consecutive semesters received another certificate and RM200. Another six were honoured as best students based on their overall achievement in both academics and co-curricular activities.
“We started the awards two years ago to encourage students in their studies,” says Mohd Shukri.
The best student award was also presented to Diploma in Management student Mohd Azri Mohd Azmi, 20, who obtained a GPA of 4.0 in three out of five semesters, and is a fifth time President’s List Award recipient.
Like Mathan, his SPM results gave him a wake-up call. “I didn’t do too well – 1A, 1B, 1C, and so on. However, my parents never gave up on me, which spurred me on to work harder in my studies,” says Mohd Azri, who studies at PTPL Ampang.
Proud parent Mohd Azmi Osman expressed his joy over Mohd Azri’s success.
“I took leave specially to attend the ceremony. I want him to know that his mother and I will always be his greatest supporters,” says Mohd Azmi.
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