PETALING JAYA: US Military Academy cadet Sayniish Pillay Muniandy from Taiping is doing more than his fair share of making Malaysia proud.
The 19-year-old’s design of an official crest for his graduating class (pic) has come out tops in a competition held at the West Point military academy in New York.
The design will adorn the rings of all his fellow graduates of West Point’s class of 2021.
Sayniish took four days to complete the design, saying it was “based on my imagination”.
He said his design included the US flag and an eagle, which had been part of the West Point class crests since 1803.
“I included my class motto ‘Until the Battle is Won’ in the middle because I felt that’s the most important component,” he said, adding that two sabres, a cadet’s and an officer’s, were also incorporated in his design.
Last June, Sayniish, who graduated from the National Defence University of Malaysia, was one of four Malaysian cadets selected to attend military academies in the US after a rigorous selection process, which takes into account factors such as classroom performance, physical fitness and commitment to service.
Only 23 Malaysian cadets have been accepted into US military academies over the past 20 years.
Sayniish said he would do his best to expand his military knowledge at West Point.
“I’m looking forward to cultivate and share whatever I have learned here in West Point with the Malaysian Army,” he said.
After he graduates, Sayniish said he wishes to serve as an infantryman in Malaysia’s 8th Rangers of the Royal Ranger Regiment or to join Malaysian Army Aviation.
He said he looked forward to rejoining his family, friends and savouring Malaysian cooking when he returns home for a break in December.
Lt-Col Sukhdev Purewal, who is Chief of the Office of Defence Cooperation at the US Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, said the fact that Sayniish had excelled in all areas of cadet life was no surprise.
“This is a terrific indicator of the ties our militaries will share throughout the future,” he added.