Duty Free Campus to learn and practice

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DATO Mohd Khairy Bin Mukhtaruddin VC

Interviewee: Professor Dato’ Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak, Vice-Chancellor, Universiti Utara Malaysia

The head of Malaysia’s northern-most university has made an open offer to potential Middle East investors to plough their money into a revolutionary education model for business students.

The “Duty Free Campus” is the brainchild of Prof Dato’ Dr Mohamed Mustafa Ishak, Chairman and Vice Chancellor of Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM, roughly, University of North Malaysia), the only public university dedicated to management education.

“We want to have a Duty Free Campus because we are a management university,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohamed, who is a stalwart of the university with 25 years of dedicated service.

“With such a programme, the students can learn and practice. You can have outlets and businesses in your own campus.

Call For Investors

Plans for the Duty Free Campus, in which goods sold will be free of duty tax, have already been submitted to the government. UUM, located in the northern state of Kedah in peninsula Malaysia, is now awaiting approval for the project at ministerial level.

Dato’ Dr. Mohamed said he hopes the Campus will attract people who are eager to conduct real-life transactions while learning hands on about business, entrepreneurship and best practice in management techniques.

Key to Dato’ Dr Mohamed’s idea is luring investors who not only want to promote a new approach to management education but can also raise the profile the Duty Free Campus with brand name products.

“We need investment,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohamed. “If there are people willing to invest in this idea of making our campus a duty free area, this will make it easier. Duty Free is a famous concept and will naturally attract good brands.”

Dato’ Dr. Mohamed said UUM is also keen to bring in more students from the Middle East to bolster its already significant Arab student population, the largest of all foreign students studying there.

“They can have class in a supermarket or a store. The students can go to class in the morning and practise in the evenings.”

“They can have class in a supermarket or a store. The students can go to class in the morning and practise in the evenings.”

UUM, which was launched in 1984, has about 1,000 students from all over the Middle East, representing about one third of the foreign student population at the Kedah campus. The total number of students at UUM is more than 34,000.

“We want to increase the number of foreign students in the university to 30 per cent from 10 per cent,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohamed. “We have the potential and capacity to fulfil this ambition.

“We have already signed MoU’s with London Business School and many top institutions in the United States. So we have partners around the world. These universities won’t sign with you if they don’t think you have the quality.”

He said the university’s programmes in Islamic Business, Accountancy and International Business, among others, have proved popular with local and foreign students with many graduates going on to strong careers in foreign affairs or with multinational companies.

The Malaysian government started UUM in order to increase the number of management-quality personnel in the country, which had previously relied on expatriates to fill top-level posts. Now, UUM’s business degrees are the most sought-after in Malaysia and, after 27 years of educating generations of managers, it has emerged as the second-largest university in the country.

UUM enjoys 100 per cent backing from the Malaysian government and one of its major strengths is that most of its programmes are offered in English. This is of particular advantage to Middle Eastern students who return to their home countries with improved English skills and better opportunities in the job market.

Working students

In addition, UUM is expanding its reach across Malaysia to encourage those already in the workforce to strengthen their academic portfolios.

Through its Executive Development Centre, UUM provides Malaysians and others who are in full-time employment the opportunity to pursue higher education while continuing their jobs.

The EDC has opened centres throughout Malaysia by forging partnerships with related industries.

“Society accepts the concept of lifelong education for all as a norm and programme offers people the chance to study while still employed,” Dato’ Dr. Mohamed was quoted as saying by local media.

“Society accepts the concept of lifelong education for all as a norm and programme offers people the chance to study while still employed”

Courses being offered include Masters in Business Administration, Executive Diploma and short courses in English and Effective Leadership.

Hot wired

In its quest to keep up with the latest Internet technology and communication trends, UUM has made wireless Internet access available throughout its campus. More than 2,000 computer terminals are available for use by students at various computer laboratories. They are all linked to the Integrated Sintok Local Area Network for access to the web.

In addition, there are wireless hotspots scattered throughout the school with all students given their own personal email account.

Technology has also been integrated into UUM’s Sultanah Bahiyah Library, which uses LINTAS (Library Information Technology Automated System) that catalogues and organises more than 1 million titles in either printed or digital form.

The library’s collection includes more than 290,000 printed materials, 654,000 non-printed items and 96,000 electronic titles. It also subscribes to more than 29,000 electronic journals and 42,000 e-book titles. Online services allow users to make collections in an efficient manner.

With so many foreign students, as well as Malaysian students who are far from home, UUM is a fully residential university and offers a mini-city atmosphere by maintaining a vast network of accommodation and related facilities.

A total of 15 residential halls provide accommodation for 22,000 students, including a special hall for married students.

Residential comfort

Each hall has common rooms, cafeteria, laundry facilities, shops, recreation centres and sports facilities. In addition, there are places of worship for all religions, including the Sultan Badlishah Mosque, which can hold prayers for up to 5,000 worshippers at one time.

The prayer hall is also recognised as the first higher education cyber mosque, providing wired and wireless internet services.

Chinese and Hindu temples, Buddhit Wats and churches for a range of denominations are available for those who hold to those respective faiths.

No town would be complete without adequate healthcare and UUM fulfils this role with its University Health Centre, which provides medical and dental treatment, counselling, first aid, surgery and medication for students and staff.

The Centre’s facilities include a computerised haematology laboratory, imaging and diagnostic laboratory as well as paediatric and ante-natal clinical services.

Sports plays an important part in university life and UUM provides facilities for a variety of disciplines. An Olympic-sized swimming pool, mini stadium with top-class running track, archery range, grass fields and other facilities cater for almost every sport, including football, rugby, hockey, track and field, badminton, tennis, basketball, volleyball, softball, handball, netball and even motorsports, among others.

UUM is the first university in the world to have an on-campus go-kart track. The UUM International Go-Kart Circuit is 1.2 kilometres long, covering 5.67 acres and cost about RM2 million to build.

The circuit has been sanctioned by the world governing body for motorsports, FIA, and is one of only four tracks in the world to run in an anti-clockwise direction.

Leisure and recreation activities at the UUM do not stop with sports and hobbies.

The campus also contains the Varsity Mall, which has a post office, banking facilities, bookshop, restaurant, mini-market and other features and attractions found in shopping malls around the world.

Shopping also extends to a commercial centre that boasts plenty of stalls managed by students and that sell a range of items and goods.

UUM has certainly made an impact among Malaysian and international students as more than just a tertiary learning centre.

It has earned a reputation as a living, breathing and growing academic institution that continues to produce high-quality students who are armed not only with knowledge and skills, but also with important life experiences.

 

 

 

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Reading Time: 5 minutes

 

Reading Time: 5 minutes

 

DATO Mohd Khairy Bin Mukhtaruddin VC

Interviewee: Professor Dato’ Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak, Vice-Chancellor, Universiti Utara Malaysia

The head of Malaysia’s northern-most university has made an open offer to potential Middle East investors to plough their money into a revolutionary education model for business students.

The “Duty Free Campus” is the brainchild of Prof Dato’ Dr Mohamed Mustafa Ishak, Chairman and Vice Chancellor of Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM, roughly, University of North Malaysia), the only public university dedicated to management education.

“We want to have a Duty Free Campus because we are a management university,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohamed, who is a stalwart of the university with 25 years of dedicated service.

“With such a programme, the students can learn and practice. You can have outlets and businesses in your own campus.

Call For Investors

Plans for the Duty Free Campus, in which goods sold will be free of duty tax, have already been submitted to the government. UUM, located in the northern state of Kedah in peninsula Malaysia, is now awaiting approval for the project at ministerial level.

Dato’ Dr. Mohamed said he hopes the Campus will attract people who are eager to conduct real-life transactions while learning hands on about business, entrepreneurship and best practice in management techniques.

Key to Dato’ Dr Mohamed’s idea is luring investors who not only want to promote a new approach to management education but can also raise the profile the Duty Free Campus with brand name products.

“We need investment,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohamed. “If there are people willing to invest in this idea of making our campus a duty free area, this will make it easier. Duty Free is a famous concept and will naturally attract good brands.”

Dato’ Dr. Mohamed said UUM is also keen to bring in more students from the Middle East to bolster its already significant Arab student population, the largest of all foreign students studying there.

“They can have class in a supermarket or a store. The students can go to class in the morning and practise in the evenings.”

“They can have class in a supermarket or a store. The students can go to class in the morning and practise in the evenings.”

UUM, which was launched in 1984, has about 1,000 students from all over the Middle East, representing about one third of the foreign student population at the Kedah campus. The total number of students at UUM is more than 34,000.

“We want to increase the number of foreign students in the university to 30 per cent from 10 per cent,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohamed. “We have the potential and capacity to fulfil this ambition.

“We have already signed MoU’s with London Business School and many top institutions in the United States. So we have partners around the world. These universities won’t sign with you if they don’t think you have the quality.”

He said the university’s programmes in Islamic Business, Accountancy and International Business, among others, have proved popular with local and foreign students with many graduates going on to strong careers in foreign affairs or with multinational companies.

The Malaysian government started UUM in order to increase the number of management-quality personnel in the country, which had previously relied on expatriates to fill top-level posts. Now, UUM’s business degrees are the most sought-after in Malaysia and, after 27 years of educating generations of managers, it has emerged as the second-largest university in the country.

UUM enjoys 100 per cent backing from the Malaysian government and one of its major strengths is that most of its programmes are offered in English. This is of particular advantage to Middle Eastern students who return to their home countries with improved English skills and better opportunities in the job market.

Working students

In addition, UUM is expanding its reach across Malaysia to encourage those already in the workforce to strengthen their academic portfolios.

Through its Executive Development Centre, UUM provides Malaysians and others who are in full-time employment the opportunity to pursue higher education while continuing their jobs.

The EDC has opened centres throughout Malaysia by forging partnerships with related industries.

“Society accepts the concept of lifelong education for all as a norm and programme offers people the chance to study while still employed,” Dato’ Dr. Mohamed was quoted as saying by local media.

“Society accepts the concept of lifelong education for all as a norm and programme offers people the chance to study while still employed”

Courses being offered include Masters in Business Administration, Executive Diploma and short courses in English and Effective Leadership.

Hot wired

In its quest to keep up with the latest Internet technology and communication trends, UUM has made wireless Internet access available throughout its campus. More than 2,000 computer terminals are available for use by students at various computer laboratories. They are all linked to the Integrated Sintok Local Area Network for access to the web.

In addition, there are wireless hotspots scattered throughout the school with all students given their own personal email account.

Technology has also been integrated into UUM’s Sultanah Bahiyah Library, which uses LINTAS (Library Information Technology Automated System) that catalogues and organises more than 1 million titles in either printed or digital form.

The library’s collection includes more than 290,000 printed materials, 654,000 non-printed items and 96,000 electronic titles. It also subscribes to more than 29,000 electronic journals and 42,000 e-book titles. Online services allow users to make collections in an efficient manner.

With so many foreign students, as well as Malaysian students who are far from home, UUM is a fully residential university and offers a mini-city atmosphere by maintaining a vast network of accommodation and related facilities.

A total of 15 residential halls provide accommodation for 22,000 students, including a special hall for married students.

Residential comfort

Each hall has common rooms, cafeteria, laundry facilities, shops, recreation centres and sports facilities. In addition, there are places of worship for all religions, including the Sultan Badlishah Mosque, which can hold prayers for up to 5,000 worshippers at one time.

The prayer hall is also recognised as the first higher education cyber mosque, providing wired and wireless internet services.

Chinese and Hindu temples, Buddhit Wats and churches for a range of denominations are available for those who hold to those respective faiths.

No town would be complete without adequate healthcare and UUM fulfils this role with its University Health Centre, which provides medical and dental treatment, counselling, first aid, surgery and medication for students and staff.

The Centre’s facilities include a computerised haematology laboratory, imaging and diagnostic laboratory as well as paediatric and ante-natal clinical services.

Sports plays an important part in university life and UUM provides facilities for a variety of disciplines. An Olympic-sized swimming pool, mini stadium with top-class running track, archery range, grass fields and other facilities cater for almost every sport, including football, rugby, hockey, track and field, badminton, tennis, basketball, volleyball, softball, handball, netball and even motorsports, among others.

UUM is the first university in the world to have an on-campus go-kart track. The UUM International Go-Kart Circuit is 1.2 kilometres long, covering 5.67 acres and cost about RM2 million to build.

The circuit has been sanctioned by the world governing body for motorsports, FIA, and is one of only four tracks in the world to run in an anti-clockwise direction.

Leisure and recreation activities at the UUM do not stop with sports and hobbies.

The campus also contains the Varsity Mall, which has a post office, banking facilities, bookshop, restaurant, mini-market and other features and attractions found in shopping malls around the world.

Shopping also extends to a commercial centre that boasts plenty of stalls managed by students and that sell a range of items and goods.

UUM has certainly made an impact among Malaysian and international students as more than just a tertiary learning centre.

It has earned a reputation as a living, breathing and growing academic institution that continues to produce high-quality students who are armed not only with knowledge and skills, but also with important life experiences.

 

 

 

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