28 June 2007

COGITO, ERGO SUM (I THINK, THEREFORE I AM) - Talk on the Malaysian Manager at Sunway Reinforced Positive Thinking


Attendees to the recent talk on ‘Malaysian Managers of the 21st Century’ by Dr Tarcisius Chin at yet another successful Distinguished Speakers Series at Sunway University College, left the auditorium where the talk was being held, highly motivated.

Dr Chin engaged the audience with his wit and charm injected into an interesting subject that everyone could relate to ~ how to lead in a fast paced world.

Having been in a vantage position as former Chairman and CEO of the Malaysian Institute of Management (MIM), Dr Chin shared pertinent points on the changing environment of Malaysia, and how being a manager was tremendously different 40 years ago compared to the current setting.

“Back then the economy was largely based on agriculture and commodities. The degree of management required was to the extent of managing plantations or mines and delving in an emerging import-substitution oriented manufacturing community.

Today, the economic and managerial scenario is like moving on a fast forward mode. Everyone has an MBA and doing their PhDs. Everything is driven by information and knowledge, and reinforced by global connectivity. At the same time, the market has flattened beyond borders and the global market needs to be served,” said Dr. Chin.

His advice to the managers of Malaysia was divided into four approaches:

  1. The managerial response

    Dr Chin advised managers to develop a global mindset (from jaguh kampong to pahlawan dunia), cope with the information age, innovate, diversify and acknowledge and balance change.

  2. Developing the Malaysian manager

    Dr Chin highlights the importance of acquiring relevant knowledge and competencies, with bias for conceptual, technological and integrative skills.

    Holistic education is also important, combined with appropriate experience.

  3. From manager to leader

    To be a good leader, one needs to keep pace and embrace change then renew oneself constantly in order to reflect.

    A leader needs to also sustain himself by continuing to self-learn (read, explore and be curious)

    Reform from academic credentials to professional certification.

  4. The managerial challenge

    Maintain IQ drive with knowledge and “nutrition”

    Enhance EQ relationships via experience and detoxification

    Finally, promote SQ values through core values and “oxygenation”.

Dr. Chin concluded his session by reflecting on an apt quote that cleverly encapsulated his hour-long talk ~ cogito, ergo sum which means ‘I think, therefore I am’. He informed the audience that positive thinking is the root to all success.

The Distinguished Speakers Series is a recent label but renowned academicians and speakers have been invited to speak at Sunway since 1989. Today it is aimed at bringing together scholars, the public and students into an intellectually engaging experience that broadens one’s perspective on topics such as business, education and management.

The Series is coordinated by Dr Goh Cheng Teik, member of the Board of Directors, Sunway University College. The talk was free and open to the public.

26 June 2007

Essay Contest Yields a Literary “Star” in Quest to Raise Standard of English

Sunway University College collaborated once again with the Oxford and Cambridge Society of Malaysia to host the much anticipated annual Oxbridge Essay Writing competition recently, a highlight of the 2007 Oxbridge English Language Event.

A total of 960 students from 24 schools around the peninsular from the Klang Valley, Seremban, Melaka and Ipoh took part in the challenge.

Ms Elizabeth Lee, Executive Director of Sunway University College and the Sunway Group of Colleges, Cambridge graduate and President of the Oxford & Cambridge Society of Malaysia said “the event is a yearly commitment in a quest to encourage, promote and enhance the use of the English Language within the future leaders of Malaysia.”

The Oxbridge judges were clearly impressed by the standard of the competition. The panel was made up of Tan Sri Lal Chand Vohrah, Dr Lee Soo Ann, Ms Scoti Albrecht, Mr Justin Leong, Mr Teh Chi Chang, Ms Chook Yuh Yng, Ms Faridah Qamaruz Zaman, Mr Andrew J. Barber and Ms Emma Davidson from the Oxford and Cambridge Society of Malaysia, while from Sunway University College were Mrs Ruma Lopes, Mr Timothy Wong, Ms Evelyn Boey, Ms Sarojini Davies, Ms Jennifer Rathabai and Mr Leonard Chin.

This year, the cash prize was doubled to RM600 from RM300 in the previous year. The first prize winner was Nishyodhan Balasundram, a fifth former from Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaann Subang Utama, with a compelling essay written on Malaysia’s teaching profession. He also received a trophy for himself and for his school and a certificate of commendation from the Oxford & Cambridge Society of Malaysia.
Participants in the competition were given an hour to compose an essay of a thousand words on a topic selected from a list of five questions on current issues.

The essay question selected asked about the ways to regain the teaching profession as it was losing its glamour since Malaysia gained its independence.

In his concluding paragraph, he urges the Ministry of Education and various educating bodies to “work together urgently to arrest the decline of the teaching profession to bring it up to the levels that it once commanded in the days before the independence. Malaysia cannot claim to be a developed nation in 2020 if its teachers are not up to par with these in more developed nations.”

When asked what his approach in writing the winning essay was, “I didn’t even do a mind map first. I just wrote whatever that came into my mind. Basically, I wrote what I felt,” he replied simply.
The young Nishyodhan has no plans to be an aspiring writer as yet, as his interests’ lies in debating competitions, which he often participates in.

Other activities at the Oxbridge English Language Event included workshops conducted by a panel of distinguished speakers who are graduates and members of the Oxford & Cambridge Society of Malaysia.

22 June 2007

Bento Party - Chapter 2

The Bento Bunch strikes again! Consisting of JK, Jacq, Chris & Lingy from the PR Dept, Steven of CIMP, Meng Wai of Student Services Dept. and Nicole Lee from Resourse Management Dept.

Once again, Steven wins the award for prettiest Bento.

And Meng Wai is healthy as ever. He puzzled his maid when he insisted the brown and red rice be divided diagonally (Note: Bento is all about aesthetics).

There we are stuffing our faces. I apologise to whomever who used the SSD Meeting Room after our Bento Party. It was I who brought the nangka.

Next, we will be having a Popiah Party! Set for the 23rd of July 07!

14 June 2007

Bento Party @ Sunway

Over lunch one day, Steven Tan, CIMP coordinator, told us about the Japanese culture he experienced when he was working there. I was so inspired that I organised a Bento Party for a few of us Sun-U staff:

Steven won our Prettiest Bento Award

The norm is to exchange a few morsels from each other's lunch boxes before eating. But in the end, we just lumped all our 'bento's in the middle of the table and ate straight from each other's boxes....very chinese of us.

Oddly, the prettiest bentos were made by our male colleagues. They insist that they put their bentos together themselves, without help from the missus.

Meng Wai's healthy bento

Steven's home-made sushi

And I proudly present MY bento:

The cheese melted cause I didn't know there was a fridge in the Student Admin Office which I could use! Hmph!

We had so much fun that we decided to have a Bento Party every month. Next one is on 21st June 07, Thursday. Everyone is welcomed!

6 June 2007


I guess since I'm the 'initiator' of this blog, I should post the first entry.

Well, the recent most exciting thing that I was involved in was the Community Carnival last 12th May 07. The day kickstart with a Community Run around Bandar Sunway, followed by activities on campus, i.e. Picasso Sandwich Making Competition, Cutie Crawlers, Junior Dash, Kid's Hunt, Dance Performances, Lucky Draws, Inline Skating Lessons, Sumo Demonstration etc.

As one of the organisers, I have to admit it was an organised mess, intended to enhance the carnival atmosphere.

Although particpation was less than we hoped, those who did come seemed to really really enjoy themselves. Hah! Too bad for those who missed out on the fun.
Well, enough words for one entry! Here are some photos I compiled, taken by me and a few other colleagues *dang dang dang*

Awww, how sweet is that? Our objective for the Carnival was to foster bonding after all.

Cutie Crawlers

Sumo Demonstration

Inline Skating Lessons

Picasso Sandwich Making Competition

I hope we will have a Carnival again next year!

5 June 2007

Sunway Alumni Couple Are Adept Treasure Hunters

It was a day they left all cares and worries behind and armed with mind boggling clues drove into the unknown. Yes it was the Treasure Hunt commemorating the 20th anniversary of Sunway University College. 120 enthusiastic staff, spouses, former and present students in 32 cars combed the enclaves of Sunway, Kota Damansara and Section 14, Petaling Jaya.

The four-hour hunt took participants on a chase to find answers to cryptic clues. The answers were related to food, musical instruments or restaurants and geared the participants up, cracking their heads and discussing the clues with each other. The good humoured competitors took it in their stride, some resorting to quick checks with friends and relatives but always keeping their cool as they got their clues worked out.

One of the participants, Mahesh Biaspal, who is a lecturer for the Monash University Foundation Year programme at Sunway shared “It was the first time for me and it was really exciting. Just from being in the exercise, I realized that there are many ways of looking at something and many eyes look at things differently which all added a dimension of fun to the hunt”.

The first place winners were Sunway alumni, Cheok Why Leong and Elaine Cheong, a husband and wife team who met while studying the American Degree Transfer Programme at Sunway in 1995. Cheok did electrical engineering and Cheong read telecommunications management. They both live in Penang.

Cheong said “It was an honour for us to win the first Treasure Hunt organised by Sunway University College. It brought back memories and it was really fun to see some of our old friends. I hope to keep in touch with the University College through the alumni and look forward to joining future alumni activities”.

Cheok added “It was a well-organised event and we had a fabulous time. We will definitely come back if there is another hunt coming up”. The duo bagged RM3,000 in prize money for their first effort at participating as a couple.

The hunt ended with a sumptuous buffet at Sunway University College which allowed the hunters to gather, relax and enjoy a time of bonding. Elizabeth Lee, Executive Director of Sunway University College and the Sunway Education Group said “The hunt was an excellent ice breaker and more so for our ALUMNI members to reminisce and renew old friendships with each other. Former Sunwayians are most welcome to join the ALUMNI and enjoy great opportunities for networking”.

For more information please visit www.sunway.edu.my under ALUMNI or you may email your details to associates@sunway.edu.my. Alternatively please call 74918622 extn: 8021 (Adelene Goh) or extn: 8021 (Elisa Dass) or Extn: 8069 (Vincent Hah).