It’s payback time for graduates

  • Nation
  • Monday, 29 Aug 2005

KUALA LUMPUR: Graduates have a responsibility to utilise the education they have received to repay their family, community and country, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said. 

“As young educated people, your intellectual input and commitment to build a competitive economy and a just, caring and socially-cohesive society is crucial. 

“You have a responsibility to utilise your education not merely for your own personal enrichment,” he said during his speech at the inaugural convocation of Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman at Wisma MCA yesterday. 

Graduates, he said, should commit themselves to contributing positively and utilising their knowledge to help build a stronger and more competitive nation. 

Abdullah also said graduates should not think that their pursuit of formal education ended with the conferment of their degrees. 

“The process of learning should not stop here. Learning is and should be, an ongoing process, a practice which should be part of our personal values and practice in daily life.” 

He added: “If we are to survive and flourish as individuals and as a nation, we must be prepared to step out of our respective comfort zones and learn to compete with the best.” 

Abdullah said the Government would play its part by maintaining the quality of higher education. 

“We will make sure that policies relating to higher education are correct as well as suitable for the Malaysian context, and that regulations and standards imposed are strictly enforced. 

“The Government will continue to seek the views of higher education stakeholders, including private institutions, to create better and more effective higher education policies,” he said. 

He said the Government was determined to make Malaysia an education hub for the region, which he deemed as “not an easy task”. 

“To accomplish this goal, we must not compromise on the quality of education.”  

Abdullah also said priority should be given to locals to fill the top positions in Malaysia Airlines. 

“I would prefer it if locals were given the opportunity to lead MAS. 

“But if there’s no one qualified, then we would have to take someone from outside the country,” he said in response to questions on who should lead MAS.  

On whether there would be a Cabinet reshuffle following the recent MCA and Gerakan party elections, Abdullah said it was not necessary for those who lost in party elections to lose their government posts.  

“It is not a practice for people who lost to vacate their government positions,” he said, declining to answer further questions on a reshuffle.  


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