Dual campus, double degree initiatives a win

Strategic partners: (from left) Prof Eddy, Prof Mohammad Shatar, Prof Mohammad Nasih, Prof Mohd Shukri, Mohamed Khaled, Prof Junainah and Ahmad Dasuki at the launch.

STRATEGIC collaborations between higher education institutions (HEIs) in Malaysia and Indonesia are a win for both countries.Congratulating Management and Science University (MSU), Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said the varsity’s new MSU Shah Alam and MSU Jakarta dual campus initiative, and the MSU, Universitas Airlangga (UNAIR) and Jakarta Global University (JGU) double degree programme, would significantly enrich the experience of students not only of these two nations, but also those who come here from all over the world.

The dual campus and double degree programmes, he said, would give MSU greater prominence in the region.

Indonesia offers tremendous potential and resources which we should leverage, he added.

“We can share expertise, learn from each other, and focus our efforts on increasing the credibility and quality of education in both countries,” he said when officiating the launch of the programmes at the varsity’s campus in Shah Alam, Selangor, on March 13.

Also present at the event were MSU president Prof Tan Sri Dr Mohd Shukri Ab Yajid and vice chancellor Prof Puan Sri Junainah Abd Hamid; UNAIR rector Prof Dr Mohammad Nasih; JGU rector Prof Dr Eddy Yusuf; Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) chief executive officer Prof Datuk Dr Mohammad Shatar Sabran; National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) chief executive Ahmad Dasuki Abdul Majid; as well as senior management from the ministry and MSU.

MSU has more than 350 strategic partners globally to support its mobility programmes, research collaborations, joint publications and community service involving the varsity’s students and teaching staff.

To date, more than 7,000 students have participated in the varsity’s “Global Mobility Programme” (GMP), “Global Leadership Programme” (GLP) and “Global Internship Programme” (GIP) aimed at developing them into competent and employable graduates.

Noting that MSU has been operating for over 17 years in cities like Bangalore, India, and Colombo, Sri Lanka, Mohamed Khaled said the dual campus and double degree initiatives would prove invaluable for the varsity’s growth.

“I hope MSU will help the ministry to convince more talented Indonesian students to come study and be trained here. This will no doubt help increase Malaysia’s visibility in the region,” he said, adding that as of June last year, there were 10,607 Indonesian students in Malaysia, and 1,398 Malaysians studying there.

While impressive, he said more could be done to increase the number of students coming here.

MSU’s latest initiatives, he added, could be a testament to the country’s excellent education system beyond borders, in line with the ministry’s aim of making Malaysia a globally respected talent hub.

“We must show ourselves to be a hub of knowledge and talent, capable of attracting the world’s best, especially from developing nations.

“We want to convince countries to send their brightest talents and upcoming leaders to be trained here. Malaysia should be a springboard to a better career, the latest innovations and more meaningful contributions to regional, as well as global citizens.”

Describing the 21st century as extremely challenging, particularly for the higher education, Mohamed Khaled said it is necessary for the ministry and HEIs to review existing focus and strategies if the sector is to thrive.“We have to enhance collaborations and form strategic partnerships with all quarters, especially universities, in and outside the country.

“We must get out of our comfort zones, borders and conventional mindsets,” he said, adding that seeking out new opportunities and novel ways of doing things, be it teaching, research or unearthing talents, is a must.

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