Malaysia to host THE Asia Universities Summit next month


Bridging frontiers: Prof Poppema (left) and Prof Chai announcing that the summit will be held at Sunway University. — MUHAMAD SHAHRIL ROSLI/The Star

MALAYSIA will be hosting the Times Higher Education (THE) Asia Universities Summit for the first time next month.

Set to be held in Sunway University, the gathering underscores Malaysia’s growing stature as an education hub for academic excellence and innovation in the region.

THE Asia Universities Summit 2024 organising chair Prof Chai Lay Ching said this is the first time the annual summit will be held here, having previously been hosted in Japan and Hong Kong.

The summit, to be held from April 29 to May 1, will provide a platform for universities to showcase their achievements and facilitate high-level panel discussions and forums.

With the theme “Bridging frontiers to reimagine the evolving landscape of education in Asia”, the summit will feature over 35 academic sessions.

Prof Chai, who is Sunway University pro vice-chancellor, said the summit will deep dive into ways to form more efficient partnerships and collaborations across universities, industries and communities.

Sunway University president Prof Sibrandes Poppema said each of the three days will have a distinct topic: Transnational Education: Building Bridges Across Countries and Campuses; Employability and Skills Gap: Building Bridges with Industry; and Communities and Authorities: Building Bridges with Society.

More than 500 global educational leaders, delegates and academics from over 80 universities across the world, including The Chinese University of Hong Kong, City University of Hong Kong, National University of Singapore, Monash University, North South University, Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Toyo University, Macau University of Science and Technology, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, Nanjing University, Lancaster University and Arizona State University, will be attending the conference.

“We are not (at the summit) just to talk about what Sunway University is doing but also to learn what others are doing,” said Prof Poppema.

The summit, added Prof Chai, will also have student-led sessions as they are the “biggest stakeholders in higher education”.

Sunway University students, she added, will lead these discussions based on the themes and sub-themes.

Additionally, the summit will host the sixth THE Awards Asia 2024 winners ceremony on the first night.

The summit will end with a visit to the Sunway Desa Mentari Community Observatory, a community health laboratory set up by an international research team, to gain new insights into preventing chronic diseases across South-East Asia.

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