PETALING JAYA: He may be a deaf-mute but Gan Yee Loong, 22, could tell that he was the centre of attention at the Star Education Fund awards presentation ceremony.
Yee Loong struggled with learning difficulties in school and occasionally felt like giving up.
However, he developed a skill for drawing cartoon characters after watching Disney movies and aspired to be a designer.
And his dreams came true when he defied the odds to secure a scholarship to pursue a diploma in Digital Art and Design at KDU College in Penang.
“I’m thankful to The Star and KDU for giving me this opportunity,” he said using sign language.
Another happy recipient was Sarawakian, Rowena Michelle Tweedie, 21, who will study for a degree in International Hospitality Management at Sunway University College.
Rowena said she intends to return to Sarawak after her studies to encourage more Bidayuh youths to further their studies.
Yee Loong and Rowena were among the 150 students who received their scholarships at Eastin Hotel yesterday, thanks to the Star Education Fund and its partners in education.
The Star group editorial/education adviser Datuk Ng Poh Tip said that the prospects for higher education were bright despite the economic downturn as shown by the recipients who had a wide selection of programmes to choose from.
“The Star Education Fund has awarded a total of 2,437 scholarships worth RM59.8mil since its inception in 1994 and we will always be a strong supporter of education,” she said in her speech.
Among those present at the ceremony was Star Publications (M) Bhd group managing director and CEO Datin Linda Ngiam.
The fund is divided into two tiers, with the first tier consisting of contributions made by Star Publications.
This year, four students received scholarships worth RM40,000 under Tier 1, to study certificate of printing at Montfort Boys Town.
Scholarships under Tier 2 are from local and foreign institutions of higher learning.
This year, 38 of them contributed to the fund by offering scholarships worth RM5.3mil.
Among the contributors are ALFA International College, Binary University College, Brickfields Asia College, Equator Academy of Art and Design, Penang, FTMS College, Han Chiang College, Penang, HELP International College of Technology, HELP University College, IACT College, INTI University College, INTI College Subang Jaya, INTI International College Penang, KDU College, Petaling Jaya, KDU College, Penang, Kolej Disted-Stamford, Penang, Kolej Tunku Abdul Rahman, Kuala Lumpur Infrastructure University College, Life College and Limkokwing University College of Creative Technology.
The others are Management and Science University, Methodist College, Metropolitan College, Olympia College, PJ College of Art and Design, PTPL Group of Colleges, Raffles Design Institute, Rose Education Foundation, Saito College, SEGi University College, SEGi College Subang Jaya, SEGi College Penang, Sentral Tech College, Penang, Stamford College, Sunway University College, Taylor’s University College, The One Academy of Communication Design, The University of Nottingham Malaysia campus and Unity College International.
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