KUALA LUMPUR: The Education Ministry may increase the number of educational institutions offering courses in selected areas to increase enrolment in higher education.
Education Minister Tan Sri Musa Mohamad said such measures were necessary for the country to reach the 40% target participation rate in higher education by 2010.
At present, only 29% of Malaysian students in the 17+ to 23+ cohort are in tertiary education compared to over 60% in developed countries. To have a 40% participation rate by 2010, we need an increased enrolment of 1.6 million students.
We hope to do this by increasing institutions offering higher education in selected areas as well as ensuring high standards, said Musa in his speech at the Star Education Fair 2004 opening yesterday, which was delivered by director-general Datuk Abdul Rafie Mahat.
Aggressive promotion of the countrys education opportunities, said Musa, was necessary in order for Malaysia to compete in the global market.
That is why we have set up educational promotional offices in China, UAE, Indonesia and Vietnam, he said
The minister commended The Star for complementing the Governments efforts through projects like the fair.
After opening the fair, Rafie accepted pledges from 47 local and foreign institutions that had contributed scholarships to the Star Education Fund. A record 348 scholarships worth RM9.5mil were pledged to the fund this year.
The Stars group editorial/education adviser Datuk Ng Poh Tip thanked the funds partners-in-education for their generous contributions.
We hope more educational institutions will step forward to contribute to this good cause and continue to shape and mould new generations of knowledgeable Malaysians, she added.
Since its inception in 1994, the fund has disbursed 1,450 scholarship awards worth RM30mil. Last year, a total of RM5.1mil was given out by 34 local and foreign institutions.