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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Do you know where you are?

Ranking: 5 Students

Posted by Alphonso Tan

I am a student of Tunku Abdul Rahman College, currently 3rd year.

There is a case in the college, showing how unobservant and innocent the nowadays students are. It happened in the branch campus, located in Kampar, previously a beautiful small town:


There was once, the principal of Tunku Abdul Rahman College and our MCA president, Dato’ Seri Ong Ka Ting paid a visit to that branch campus. In the visiting, they, together with the head of branch campus, took a sip at a coffee shop. The coffee shop was fully occupied, mostly by students. And so, the big-shots aimed at a semi-occupied table, which is enough for them to squeeze in.
The big-shots (BSs) politely asked the people around that table, “Can we have a seat?”
“Sure, “ replied them.
And so, the they squeezed at a same table in the coffee shop.
After a short moment, Dato’ Seri started the conversation, “Are you the students of TAR College?”
“Yes, “ they replied.
“Oh…” And the principal grinned.
“Do you know the principal of TAR College?” asked Dato’ Seri.
“No,” the students replied.
“Do you know the head of this (Kampar) TAR College?” he asked again.
“No,” the same replied.
“What about the Chairman of the college?” thinking that he might be famous in this campus.
“No,” came another reply.
“Do you know who am I?” asked Dato’ Seri in aghast.
“No,” the students answered in confusion.

Probably, this is how innocent the today’s students are. And I can tell you, some students don’t even know the names of their lecturers and tutors too! I think ‘pelajar hari ini mudah lupa lah…” Lupa mana taruk sijil SPM, lupa nombor kereta sendiri, lupa datang sekolah, lupa bayar yuran, lupa apply PTPTN, lupa budi, lupa kulit… In the future, maybe they might even forget who had feed them rice and milk.

Coming back, I don’t expect you to memorise the whole organisation chart of your institutes. What I would like to deliver is, know what is in your position and what is around you. They might be important to you one day. They might come in handy to you when you are in trouble one day.

I am usually squeezed in a lecture hall of 400 over students. The numbers of ‘observant’ students I could tell is about less that 20 students. Below the 5%. I remember during my first auditing lecture, my lecturer asked the cause of the fall of Arthur Anderson. “Enron,” was the only answer from me. From then on, the lecturer paid a lot of attention on me, though. There are many bright students above me, getting a distinction in Diploma. But how observant, sensitive enough are the students (speaking in general, but not just aiming at the distinction holders) today? How do student often flip through the newspaper? When I said ‘observant’ and ‘sensitivity’, I mean knowing your position as in the industry you are.

I had my industrial training in this February to May in a small audit firm. I met a guy. He gave up his full-time study, and currently working full time with me, as an audit assistant, plus studying part-time. I was talking with him about the industry (accounting), and after I finished my sentence regarding about the Big 4, he looked at me oddly, and asked, “What is Big 4?’

“For what we know so many things?”, “Can we change anything from it?” are the usual replies from the students. Yes. For what? But I can tell you, if something will change, for what we know it now? To digress a little, hoping that I am not offending any crime under AUKU 1971, 20 years ago, when people were talking about voting for opposition, the majority replies were, “For what? Can we change the government?”, but today, someone might say, “This is the most meaningful and eventful vote I’ve made in my life. I voted with my tears sprinkling in my eyes.” Does it look meaningful to remember those small issues? Maybe. Do we looked ‘more educated’ when we get to know more things? Maybe. Do we looked ‘much stupidier’ to learn something extra? I don’t think so.

Previously, there was a bunch of us in college, who were unhappy with certain issues about the college. So, we complained on the same issue, but individually. One coursemate of mine, lodged a complaint to the Student Affairs Department, and stopped in the manager level. He was scolded by the manager. I, were scolded by the manager too, but further to proceed on to appeal to a higher authority, and my issue was eventually solved immediately. 3 months later, he told me about this case. I asked him why not complain to the higher authority. He replied, “I thought the manager is the highest.” Until today, there was no feedback on his case yet. His issue is still in pending.

So, when you are in an environment, please, get to know the issues surrounding you. Check the background of it. Flip the papers more often. Get to know what is happening today. If you are in the accounting (or even business) industry, please recognise Big 4, Enron, Arthur Anderson, Transmile, Oilcorp etc. They are your mother. If you are pursuing a law degree or currently exercising your chambering, please know who is Zaid Ibrahim and his company, and also Shearn Delamore. They are the king of legal in Malaysia. If you’re aiming for political science, please, do know who is Anwar Ibrahim, Mahathir, Lim Kit Siang, Hadi Awang and so on… Get to know the environment around you, and you might use them one day.

Cheers!
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Comments
2 Comments

2 comments:

  1. bravo for such an interesting post...

    however, 'observant' is not quite an accurate word describing young brats these days.. i would say that students are more book-wise than street-wise..

    many of them have sunk by mountain-high of assignments, prventing them from even going through the latest happenings in Malaysia .. others simply unmoved by the fast moving world..

    by the way - knowing the Big4, Zaid Ibrahim and politicians proves nothing less than materialistic.. but i m more thrilled that many law students who do not know what the heck is CLP

    ReplyDelete
  2. a good one...very insightful...i cant agree more with the things you had said...by the way i am a staff of SAD,TARC,Main Campus,KLumpur...so i very much know about the "tidak apa " attitude of some students(or most of them)

    ReplyDelete

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