A non-political, non-profit community of Malaysian college and university students aimed at collecting and distributing information about education, opportunities and the future generation of Malaysia. Comments, suggestions, e-mails are welcome!

Monday, January 30, 2006

The United World Colleges

A couple of months ago, I came back from Santa Fe’ after witnessing the incredible spectacle of a Salman Rushdie speech, only to find out Sayed, from Afghanistan, burnt Rushdie’s books once the fatwa was declared more than a decade ago. When Hamas won the elections, I walked three doors over to ask Mohannad what the situation in Palestine was like. Kenya was recently mired in a constitutional crisis, and Brian from Nairobi gave me an in-depth analysis of the situation on the ground.

This, is what the United World Colleges are like; 200 students from over 90 countries in a setting that facilitates cultural, political, and socio-economic exchange. I’ve only been in the UWC-USA, New Mexico, for about 5 months, and my world-view has experienced an incredible shift. Imagine, walking to the cafeteria and sitting at a table with students from 6 other countries, discussing the latest elections results in Liberia, with each region bringing a completely different mode of thought, or, staying up till 2 in the morning discussing the virtues and pitfalls of Marxism. It’s all very intellectually stimulating.

The United World Colleges originated in the ideas of the educationalist Kurt Hahn in the 1950’s and the first UWC, Atlantic College, opened in Wales in 1962.Today, there are twelve UWC’s all over the world, one in the UK, Singapore, Canada, Swaziland, the USA, Italy, Venezuela, Hong Kong, Norway, Costa Rica, India and Bosnia. This coming year, Costa Rica and Bosnia will be enrolling their first batch. Each college has its own distinctive character and strengths, but all share a common mission. The headquarters of the UWC movement is in London.

Kurt Hahn initially founded the UWC’s with the interest of easing Cold War tensions by targeting the youth of the world. Since its inception, Lord Mountbatten, the last Viceroy of India, and Prince Charles have been presidents of the UWC movement. Currently , Queen Noor of Jordan is the President, and Nelson Mandela is the Honorary President.

The UWC’s, with the exception of Simon Bolivar UWC of Agriculture, offer students aged 16-19 a pre-university education based on the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. The Simon Bolivar College in Venezuela on the other hand, offers a three year tertiary agricultural education and training for students aged 18-21. The IB is accepted all over the world as a rigorous and challenging program, with a focus on developing well rounded students.

I applied for this opportunity right after receiving my SPM results, and am currently studying in the Armand Hammer United World College of the American West on a 50% scholarship. The value of scholarship ranges from a full one for certain colleges to a partial one for others. Applications are sent to National Committees, with one in each country, and the selection process is coordinated by its members. The cost of studying here for me is around RM 40k a year. The general worry, as was mine, for students applying to a program like this is: the UWC offers only a Pre-U education at a much higher cost. What about my Undergrad studies? Where am I to get the money for that?

These questions haunted me for weeks before I arrived. Rest assured, almost all UWC students get into reputable universities or colleges with very generous financial aid. Many colleges also give special preference to UWC students and also provide scholarships specifically for UWC graduates. My countrymates, Eng Han(UWC-USA) and Xiang Ling(Pearson UWC), were recently accepted into Dartmouth College and Harvard University respectively with generous grants and scholarships. Shelby Davis, one of the biggest donors to the UWC movement , has also established the Davis Scholarship for all UWC students. If you NEED financial aid, there is a list of schools where the Davis fund will provide you with $10 000 for fees, making universities and colleges more willing to accept, and financially support your education. In addition, there are five schools where Davis will provide full need-based financial aid: Princeton, Middlebury, Colby, Wellesley, and College of the Atlantic. The Davis Scholarship is need based, and takes into consideration your parents income + assets. That being said, most middle-class Malaysian students are eligible for this scholarship.

Financial and academic aspects aside, just being in a UWC is an experience you’ll never forget. Lifelong friendships across cultural, religious, and ethnic lines are fostered, and, I assure you, your knowledge of the world will increase dramatically. So, visit The Official UWC website for further information on the history and mission of the UWC movement.

For information regarding application forms and deadlines, contact the Malaysian National Committee.

Malaysia UWC National Committee
Phone: +603 78805455/66
Fax:+603 7880 5477

by Nithiya

Nithiya is currently a first year at UWC-USA, New Mexico.

Message from the secretariat's office: deadline for application has been extended till March 27. Kindly contact Puan Dina from the Malaysian National Committee Office for more details.

Updated on 21 March 2006

Thursday, January 26, 2006

International Film Screenings at FINAS (Free!)

I got to know about this International Film Screenings last year and so far, I have found it to be a very interesting experience. First of all you get to watch movies free, and secondly, as you will see from February's programme, the movies shown are very highly acclaimed. Furthermore, once a month, they have a Directors in Conversation session where you get to watch a local film, bombard the director with questions in a Q&A session, and also chat with the director afterwards. And as far as I have seen, movies have been uncensored.

Past Directors in Conversation sessions include Sepet, where Yasmin Ahmad and Sharifah Amani made an appearance(I went for that!); Chemman Chaalai(The Gravel Road), a Malaysian Tamil film(yes!) by Deepak Menon; Kaki Bakar by U-Wei bin Haji Saari and the list goes on.

The following is taken from an email sent out to the Kaki Kino mailing list:

It is with great pleasure that we wish to announce the return of the international film screenings that we used to organise at the Asia-Europe Institute, UM.

There have been many changes over the last few months, especially since Gareth left AEI. First of all, four of us (Gareth, Wan, Khadijah and Noorshah) have established KAKI KINO as a film consultancy through which we hope to encourage progressive film culture in Malaysia.

More importantly, starting in February the new home for the film screenings will be the National Film Development Corporation (FINAS) which is located next to Zoo Negara in Ampang. We are very happy with this new arrangement. The FINAS Director General, Fauzi Ayob, is keen to encourage a more vigorous engagement with world cinema and the screenings are part of this new direction.

The film screenings will take the same format as before. International films will be shown every Wednesday evening at 8.30 pm, while the last Saturday of each month will be used to showcase the best of Malaysian filmmakers. As usual, we will be providing a short introductory talk, programme notes and refreshments (hurray!). Admission to all films is free.

One important change to note is that the screening of The Sea Inside is now on Thursday 2 February at 8.30 pm (because 1 February is a public holiday in Kuala Lumpur). All other regular screenings will be on Wednesday evenings except the Directors In Conversation series which will be on Saturdays.


The full address for the film screenings is:
Auditorium P. Ramlee
National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS)
Studio Merdeka Complex
Lot 1662, Jalan Hulu Kelang
68000 Ampang
Tel: 4108 5722 (FINAS)


Thursday 2 February at 8.30 pm
Spain 2004, 125 mins., Dir. Alenjandro Amenabar
Winner of Best Foreign Language Film, Academy Awards 2005

Wednesday 8 February at 8.30 pm
USA 2004, 152 mins., Dir. Taylor Hackford
Winner of Best Actor, Academy Awards 2005

Wednesday 15 February at 8.30 pm
France/Germany 2002, 150 mins., Dir. Roman Polanski
Winner of Best Director and Best Actor, Academy Awards 2003

Wednesday 22 February at 8.30 pm
Germany 2004, 156 mins., Dir. Oliver Hirschbiegel
Nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, Academy Awards 2005

Saturday 25 February at 3.30 pm
Malaysia 2005, 87 mins., Dir. Woo Ming Jin
The director will be in conversation with Dr Wan Zawawi Ibrahim (ATMA-UKM) after the screening

Getting There

FINAS is located right next to Zoo Negara in Ampang.

By Bus
If you opt for public transportation, take Intrakota Bus No 20 from Central Market, a No 170 bus from Jalan Ampang, or a No 17 bus from Jalan Raja Laut in the Chow Kit area.

By Rail
Take the PUTRA LRT at Kuala Lumpur Sentral Station, getting off at Wangsa Maju station. From there, take a taxi to FINAS.

By Car
If you plan to drive, FINAS is located about 13km from Kuala Lumpur city centre, along Jalan Hulu Kelang, which is accessible through Jalan Ampang. The main highway to Ampang is the Middle Ring Road 2 (MRR2).

If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to drop us a line at kaki.kino@yahoo.com

Best wishes
Gareth & Wan Zawawi (on behalf of Kaki Kino)

End of Email

by Ng Eng Han

Relevant links
Schedule for March 2006

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Raleigh International

Do you want to make a lasting contribution to the lives of rural communities? Explore some of the most spectacular and remote landscapes on earth? Live, learn and work with people of different nationalities and backgrounds? On Raleigh International expeditions, you can do all this and more in the space of just 3 months.

I know because I had the grand opportunity to be a venturer on Expedition Sabah 02L in 2002. Initially, I joined the expedition with a mission to "help those poor villagers in rural Sabah!" How wrong I was! In the end, I was the one who gained the most from the experience. Expedition opened my eyes to the fact that I'm a lot stronger than I think I am. That most of the barriers I see rest solely in my head. This newfound awareness has helped me achieve a lot more in life and opened many doors for me in my career. I’d like to share my experience with you to encourage you to take advantage of the same.

What is Raleigh International?

Founded in 1984, Raleigh International is a UK-registered youth charity, which aims to inspire young people from all backgrounds to realise their full potential via sustainable environmental and community projects.

What are Raleigh International expeditions?

Raleigh International runs 3-month long expeditions in countries as varied as Costa Rica & Nicaragua, Chile, Namibia, Ghana and Malaysia. Each expedition brings together 120 volunteers (called “venturers”) from around the world to live and work together on projects in groups of 12.

As a venturer, you will work on 3 projects in rural areas over the course of 3 months. An Environmental project, a Community project and an Adventure project. Each project lasts three weeks long.

These projects vary from expedition to expedition due to the changing environment, seasons and needs of the local community. Whichever project you work on, you can be sure that it is sustainable and run with the full support of the local community.

Examples of Environmental projects
  • Plant dipterocarp seedlings to rehabilitate rainforest
  • Help scientists track and tag endangered animals
  • Conduct reef checks on scuba dives
  • Build animal hides in nature parks
Examples of Community projects
  • Build a kindergarten, clinic or community hall
  • Develop eco-tourism programmes together with the local community
  • Build a gravity water feed system
  • Teach English to rural communities
Examples of Adventure projects
  • Trek through tropical rainforest and cutting trails
  • Kayak along unexplored coastline
  • Cross icy plains of vast mountain ranges
  • Scale Mount Kinabalu, the highest mountain in South East Asia
Do I need to be super fit to join?

The short answer is no. On Raleigh expeditions, you will face physically and mentally challenging situations. Therefore, a decent level of fitness and a prior health check is necessary. However, Raleigh International is not about finding the strongest, the fittest or the fastest venturers but about inspiring you to rise to the challenge and discover skills, strengths and abilities you didn’t know you had.

17-25 years old?

Join a Raleigh expedition as a venturer. Venturers over 25 may be accepted on a case-to-case basis.

Over 25?

Join a Raleigh expedition as a volunteer staff. Administrators, accountants, medics, mountain leaders, logisticians, divers, drivers, builders, artists, photographers and project managers are just a few of the many positions available.

How much does it cost to join?

If you are Malaysian and want to join a Malaysia expedition as a venturer, you are required to fund raise RM1500 as your expedition fee. This sum is significantly lower than what non-Malaysians pay. It is to cover your food, board, transportation and insurance for the entire three-month long expedition. There will be other aspiring venturers fundraising as well, so you can team up with them and work together on a common fundraising project.

In addition to that, you'll need about RM1000 to purchase personal expedition gear and your return air tickets to Kota Kinabalu to join the expedition.

If you'd like to join an international expedition (Costa Rica & Nicaragua, Chile, Namibia or Ghana), you are required to fund raise £2600.

Do check Raleigh International Kuala Lumpur for the latest fundraising targets because they may vary from expedition to expedition.

Where can I get more information?

1) Visit the Raleigh International web site for further info.

2) If you live in Peninsula Malaysia, get in touch with Raleigh International Kuala Lumpur (RIKL). RIKL is a registered society run on a 100% volunteer basis by past venturers and aspiring venturers. RIKL works closely with Raleigh International to help recruit, advise and facilitate applications to join a Raleigh expedition. RIKL also runs environmental and community projects in and around KL all year round.

Come for one of RIKL monthly meetings.

Date: Every first Monday of the month
Time: 8 – 10pm
Venue: Rakan Muda Clubhouse, Jalan Dato Onn, Kuala Lumpur.

You are also welcome to email the Expedition Officer at expedition@raleighinternational.org.my with any questions that you may have.

Raleigh International Kuala Lumpur Introduction Weekend 2004

3) If you live in Sabah, get in touch with Rory Hall, Country Director for Malaysia at raleigh@streamyx.com

Information correct as of 18 January 2006.


Adriene Leong, former President of Raleigh International Kuala Lumpur, is a copywriter, explorer and idealist.

Monday, January 16, 2006

7th China Synergy Program

This is a program that I highly recommend. I myself went to the 5th China Synergy Program, and it is the best 3 weeks that I have ever experienced in my life.

It would be from 2nd to 18th July 2006, and the application deadline is on the 6th of February 2006. Do browse through the website, for more details.

This year, the trip will bring you to HK, Guangdong, Macao, Xian, Shanghai and Beijing. There is no application fee, and for those who are accepted, they are charging USD200 (RM760) as a token for your confirmation. This is to avoid those who sign up and fail to show up.

Every cost, including accommodation, transport, meals etc would be borne by the organizer, except for the visa application fee to China, and your return flight between KL-HK.

You would get opportunities to meet up with a lot of top government officers in China, including mayors of several cities, some ministers, and perhaps Vice President of China etc. Besides that, you would have opportunities to meet up with top CEOs in China ( I met up with CEO and founder of Baidu.com when I was there, besides a number of other CEOs), olympic gold medalists, China top 10 youth, historians etc.

And the best experience would be meeting up and learning together, plus networking with over 200 top students from all over the world that attend this 3-week China Synergy Program.

Hope that some of you would apply. The application criteria include you must be studying in a university anywhere in the world(degree, master or PhD), and you must be a chinese descendant.

by Yeoh Chen Chow

Chen Chow is a very active contributor in RECOM and is very dedicated to help his peers in any way. For more information, contact him at www.recom.org

Friday, January 13, 2006

SPM: A Levels Scholarship in UK

Back in secondary school, people used to ask me where I'm heading next and I'd be the odd one out saying "I'm going to do A-levels at Bosworth College". Not surprisingly I'm faced with clueless faces asking lots of questions.

I'm going to try to keep this short and sweet.

Name of College : Bosworth Independent college (Click here for homepage)

Location: Northampton, UK - Its very town-like, not even close to being like a city. But a comfortable and friendly town.

Process of application : Its advertised in the newspaper at around late Sept-early Oct, or visit their website. Just give them a ring to book a slot for an interview. Bring important documents such as SPM forecast results and your report cards etc. (include also your extracurricular activities)

The "interview": They surprised me with an IQ test! The interview was quite informal just enquiring about the certificates you show them and a few general questions. Nothing technical to test your inteligence or maturity.

Amount of scholarship offered : They said its 100% off school fees and you pay for board and lodging. But you basically pay 12000 pounds for the 18 month course. It includes all tuition fees,accomodation and meals. But what they don't tell you is it doesn't include charges for internet (I don't know if they still charge for it), national exams (for AS-level and A-level), laundry (optional), textbooks (most of us bought second hand from seniors), and 5 pound photostating charges each term (its quite worth it when you see how many past papers they print towards the exams)

The college : It was a great experience. Teaches a lot of independence yet does not throw you out there all alone to fend for yourself. A good transition between secondary school and university abroad. Firstly, I did not live alone as they arranged for all the 10 scholars to leave together. We even had someone from a Malaysian education agency to accompany us right to the door step of the college. All meals were catered, so we did not have to cook but were given the option to because the houses are well equipped with cooking facilities. They had three ptions for accomodation : 'Host family', 'Independent house' or 'halls' (can't remember what they call it). Its pretty obvious what the host family option entails. Independent house is where about 4-6 students share a house with very minimal rules. Halls is where students(usually below the age of 17) stay in single or double rooms. The cooking facilities are more limited and they have wardens thus have stricter curfews. The size of an average class is only about 6-8. Therefore we have pretty close relationships with our teachers. The college does not have an enormous number of students, but has a mixture of students from all backgrounds and nationalities. Vietnamese, Hongk-ies, Chinese, British, and Russians are just a few examples.

Extra curricular activities : To be honest, there's not much of it there (mostly because of the weather). Mainly, it's football. There's a huge field opposite one of the building where most of the sporting activities are held. There are tennis courts, cricket and rugby fields on it. The college also has 'Rounders' (a British sport i think, something like baseball) bats for students to play it on the field. If in-door sports is more of your thing, there are two pool tables available at minimum cost[students tend to find ways to play for free =)]. There's quite a large variety of board games available too.

Help with university applications : They organise a three-week course after AS-level exams to help students with their applications. A few universities will come to the college and give talks about the specific courses, interviews and some insights into what they look for in a student. The college also organises a small university fair for the students to enquire about universities in the comfort of their college. Normally this is where students collect university prospectus and obtain as much information as possible about the universities. Apart from this, they also organise trips to university open days (but they charge for transportation). Other more interesting stuff like team building activities, rounders, yoga and other random things they think of are also held in parallel with the 'university stuff'. Each student is also allocated a personal tutor, whom which helps the students with their personal statement. The college also arrange a couple of mock-interviews for students before the real thing.

Best thing about the college : The staff at college are really friendly. The whole atmosphere in the college is very relaxed. Teachers, even the principal are very approachable. They are willing to give extra help whenever needed as long as you ask for it.

I can't think of much that I don't like about the college other than the fact that they try to squeeze money out of students whenever possible.

All in all, it was a wonderful experience of learning, maturing and embracing independence. Something than i wouldn't change even if i had the chance to.

by Tang Ming Wei

Tang Ming Wei is currently studying dentistry at the University of Manchester. She loves the course and the city. She is a former student of SMK Damansara Jaya and completed her A-Levels at Bosworth Independent College, Northampton, UK last August.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Travel, Global Education - Up With People

Living in a Buddhist temple in the hills of Murou one week and then in a super Westernized house with 3 flat screen TVs in Tokyo the week after. Meeting mayors and organizing events as part of your internship. Visiting a concentration camp in Erfurt and then having a discussion with people all over the world about ethical leadership – and having a German girl share the story of her grandparents during the Nazi times. Visiting the World Expo in Aichi and having roundtable talks with the top people of Hollywood. Sharing a house with a Mexican, a Punjabi Brit and a Nepali, and regularly hanging out with the Brazilian, Taiwanese, and American across the street. Reading a news article about Kenya and thinking of your friend who lives there. Getting hand massages from a friend from Bermuda while flying over Siberia. Singing and doing sign language on stage – and having the whole audience follow. Sharing your story of Hari Raya in Utrecht, inspiring the Dutch audience to come to you after the show and chat about it.

These, and much much more, are the various experiences I had for five months in 2005 thanks to Up With People’s Global Education Program.

What’s Up With People?
Up With People is a US-based organization founded in 1965 as a counter to the “down with people” sentiment going on in that era. J. Blanton Belk, the founder of Up With People, wanted to provide an avenue for youths to be positive and share the message of togetherness and world unity. For about 35 years Up With People produced musicals performed by youths from all over the world, travelling yearly to many places to spread messages of peace, love, and understanding. Besides performing, the youths also do various community service work and interact with various cultures. Amongst the most notable achievements of Up With People include performing at the Superbowl and the Munich Olympics.

In 2004, after a brief shutdown due to financial reasons, Up With People launched the WorldSmart Leadership Program (the program I was on), a semester-long program whereby young adults from all over the world travel to 18 cities in 3 continents (North America, Asia, Europe), do community service, perform, have classes and discussions on world issues and communication, work on internships or projects, live with host families, and do so much more. Three semesters of the WorldSmart Leadership Program have travelled, and in July 2006, it will relaunch itself as the Up With People Global Education Program – returning to its roots while still maintaining its new focus.

What happens in the program?
The Up With People Global Educational Program consists of these elements:

• Travel – the crew travels for 22 weeks across the US, Japan, and Europe (The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy), spending a week in a different city after a month-long orientation in Denver, Colorado. About 10 weeks (including orientation) are spent in US, 6 in Japan, and 6 across Europe. Sometimes, in between travel to different cities, the crew will be able to visit other noteworthy places in the country (for instance, while travelling from Bern, Switzerland, to Modena, Italy, we got to stop over in Lugano, Switzerland and have a guided tour.)

• Intercultural Exchange – the crew consists of young adults aged 18-29 from all over the world, including 10 to 15 staff members with various experience in intercultural communications, leadership, and education. Crew members are encouraged to share their culture with the others, through presentations, performance, and events.

• Performance – to reflect Up With People’s history as a travelling performance group, every week there will be a Celebration, whereby crew members put on an hour-long performance to bring the community together. The Celebration combines many elements – music, dance, singing, multimedia, acting, speech, sign language, as well as cultural elements from the countries represented by the crew. The Celebration is wholly produced by the crew, with some members contributing various elements – in our semester, we had Korean drums and a fashion show organized by a crew member from China.

• Community Service – crew members work on all sorts of community service projects, from visiting schools to deweeding gardens, from working at an old-folks home to producing a radio show. Often these projects involve interaction with other people in the community, and the crew gets to learn about regional issues while helping their host city.

• Regional Learning – the crew learns about their host city through various ways; tours, lectures, company visits, service projects, and even creative methods such as scavenger hunts.

• Host Family Living – the crew members live with host families in their host city and get an in-depth look into the culture of the city. Host families come in all sorts of forms (typical family, gay couple, single parent, college youth in dorms, all sorts!) and live in all sorts of houses (Catholic monastery, high-rise apartment, trailer home) with all sorts of interests (I’ve lived with humanitarians active in disaster relief in Phoenix, Arizona, and a family in Belgium whose brother is a famous writer).

• Internships – the crew gets to work with the staff on various internships in various fields – External Relations, Creative Productions, Operations, Applied Education, Community Impact, and others. They get direct training and experience in their field and learn valuable skills in leadership, ingenuity, and teamwork. I was an External Relations intern for half the semester and among my various tasks included making presentations to university students, collating the online newsletter, and meeting the mayor of Maruko, Japan.

• Special Projects – the crew are also able to work on their own projects, either for the group or for their own personal growth. They are able to obtain guidance and assistance from the staff, but they are also expected to be independent and resourceful. Amongst the various projects initiated and organized by our crew included various Appreciation Nights, a newsletter for host families, a Language Exchange, and many more.

• Discussions and Classes – the crew come together to discuss topics related to leadership and world issues – from the power of money and materialism, to world conflict, to ethical leadership. Often, the students will do their own presentations on issues that they feel passionate in – our crew had presentations on the favelas (squatter houses) of Brazil and the portrayal of women in media.

• Random Fun – sometimes all we want to do is relax and have fun! And there’s plenty of it around. From glittery vans to surprise movie nights; from raclette dinners to A Night At The Proms. You never know what’s going to happen!

There is so much more to Up With People than just this though – it’s an international multicultural sensory adventure that will open your mind and truly broaden your horizons.

How do I apply?
Easy! Just go to http://worldsmart.protulae.com/applynow and fill in the form (it’s free!). Up With People works on rolling admissions, so theoretically there isn't a deadline. It's recommended that you apply between 6 - 12 months before the semester you want to travel (January and July), though we've had people who applied seriously weeks before. Once you’ve submitted it, you’ll be contacted by a member of the Admissions team, who’ll conduct an interview (mine was by phone) and help you with any queries you have. If you’re accepted, you will receive various materials and enrollment forms by post, some of which you’ll need to fill up and return. You’ll also get some letters that will help you get your visas (usually a tourism visa works fine).

You can also request more information at http://worldsmart.protulae.com/inquiry - the people at the office are generally very friendly and are willing to help.

Who are they looking for?
Up With People is looking for the following sorts of people:

• Young adults 18-29
• Completed high/secondary school
• Excellent stamina and good health (it’s quite taxing but if you take care of yourself you should be fine)
• Proficient in English (the whole program is conducted in English, though they don’t ask for English test results – they judge your ability through the interview and application. We did have quite a number of people in our crew for whom English was a second – third sometimes – language, and they picked it up fine.)
• Self-motivated, eager, and passionate
• Good communications and leadership skills
• Interested in travel and sharing cultures
• Flexibility (trust me, you need this trait!)
• Willing to learn and try new things

Though part of the program is based on performing, you don’t actually have to be very good at a performance art – there is no audition process. As long as you’re willing to learn and adapt, you’ll be ok. And hey, there’s plenty of opportunities for tech and backstage work if you’re that stage-shy...

Fees & Scholarships
The Up With People Global Educational Program costs US$11800 for a semester and US$19500 for a whole year (two semesters). This covers tuition, travel beyond Denver, housing, meals, and the services of a full-time travelling staff. Expenses such as visas, tickets to Denver, health insurances, and personal expenses are your own.

Up With People offers scholarships for those that are in need and have shown effort in raising funds. They also have plenty of scholarship opportunities listed on their website http://upwithpeople.org/scholarships.htm as well as a document on interesting and creative fundraising ideas http://upwithpeople.org/PDF/FundraisingIdeas.pdf.

I paid full fee for the program (OK, my parents did) though I did get RM300 from a Hitz.FM contest because of my involvement in the program. The US Embassy gave good ideas too. Plenty of people in my crew – Singapore, Indonesia, Nepal, Japan, USA, etc – got scholarships and managed to find funding elsewhere, while others took out loans and some worked other jobs. It really depends on how resourceful and persistent you are! (Personally, I wished I had known of the Fundraising Ideas document when I was applying. Some of the ideas are pure genius and would have helped me a lot!)

Check It Out!
If you have any more questions, feel free to visit the Up With People website at http://upwithpeople.org or even email me at divabat@gmail.com . I’ll help you out the best that I can, or refer you to those that know better.

Good luck!

by Tiara Shafiq

Tiara Shafiq is currently in transition, her life path having been significantly altered after her Up With People experience. She was a Mass Communications student in Limkokwing University College but now is looking for more opportunities in experiential learning (and is hoping for a job with Up With People!). She is also a freelance webmistress & writer, with her portfolio at http://blessedbeproductions.com . She is highly interested in alternative learning and has set up a blog at http://educatedeviate.wordpress.com to share her thoughts on alternative forms of education. She can be reached at divabat@gmail.com – please do!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Misc: Harvard wants THIS girl - The Star

Yap Xiang Ling, of Petaling Jaya, has just been accepted in Harvard University's Class of 2010. What makes her more exceptional than the average Harvard freshman is that she is hearing-impaired. This is her story.

Congrats, Xiang Ling! We look forward to seeing you in the US of A!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

University Students, Overseas - Education Roadshow 2006

Date: Mon, 02 Jan 2006 19:26:13 -0800 [01/02/2006 10:26:13 PM EST]

Subject: Education Roadshow Summer 2006
Dear all,

Some of you may have heard that last summer, of a a group of Malaysian students studying in the US decided to travel around Malaysia as part of an education roadshow to secondary schools in Malaysia. Now these students have gotten old (LOL..) and have alternate summer plans so I propose we take up their efforts this year in our own Education Roadshow Summer 2006! Let's get together and make it

When: Summer 2006 (May - September 2006)
Where: All around secondary schools in Malaysia
What: Promoting alternate ways of obtaining higher education to students in secondary schools in Malaysia. We give them the information they need on admissions, financial aid, scholarships etc.
Who's involved? : Anyone studying outside Malaysia who wants to share experiences and encourage more Malaysians to aply to their university/country. Anyone who wants to be a part of a good thing. Anyone who wants to have fun and be doing something worthwhile as well.

I've compiled a list of possible doubts/questions you may have and answered them as best I can:

1. American colleges only?
No. This roadshow is to provide information on all sorts of education opportunities outside Malaysia, hence it would be wonderful if Malaysians studying all over the world would participate to share experiences. You remember how clueless you were when you were applying, let's answer the questions that no one helped us answer!

2. I don't want to give up my summer!
Look at this as a way for you to do a good thing while travelling around Malaysia. Giving talks at schools by day and hitting the town by night. All round Malaysia...meeting new people, seeing new places, can anyone say roadtrip? :)
Plus, you dont have to give up all three months of your precious summer. Just let us know when you are free, and we'll fit it around everyone else's availability - and draw up a neat little schedule.

3. How long will this take?
This really depends on you guys. Basically all of us will get in touch with as many secondary schools as we have contact with and the number of schools will determine the length of the roadshow. But as i wrote above, you dont need to be there for the entire roadshow, just when u are available.

4. Costs?
Whoever has an available car must feel duty bound to offer it for us to drive from place to place :P :P For those who want to give talks in East Malaysia, then there will be flight costs to take into account. We will try to get some degree of financial assistance from our respective universities. Once again, i ask you to take this as a holiday that you would pay for anyway, while doing a good, noble thing.

5. Will it be fun?
DUH of course. Put a bunch of young people on the road , how could it not be fun?

6. Is it worth my time?
Yes i see the question already...yes it will look good on your resumes. "Part of independent effort to promote education nationally." Sound good? Hehe. Also, possible newspaper publicity if you like to get your photogenic side profile in the national dailies.

7. Will I get in trouble?
Er..no. I see no conceivable way you could get into trouble unless you get too drunk and decide to run through Kelantan naked, in which case it would not be the fault of the roadshow anyway. LOL.

8. Can my friends get involved?
Of course, the more the merrier. Just get them to email me their details.

9. I have more questions because you just suck at predicting and answering them :P
Email me at vanessachan@berkeley.edu

10. Can i confirm later?
Yes, but as soon as possible.

So if you're interested, please email me back the following details:
- your name and contact number+email address
- what secondary schools you can get in touch with
- your availability with as much exactness as possible
- your university (for financial assistance we hope to get from them)
- whether you have an available car and can drive it/allow it to be driven from school to school.

Vanessa (who is suffering in rainy California right now... hehe)

Happy new year all!!!!!

Vanessa Chan is currently in her freshman year at University California at Berkeley. She is originally from Petaling Jaya and is studying Economics. She and Nick go way back.
If you are interested in participating in the Education Roadshow 2006, please email vanessachan@berkeley.edu