APART from looking at students’ results, HELP University College assistant registrar R. Parmispery also used a calculator when vetting the Star Education Fund scholarship applications.
The calculator, she said, was used to calculate the total family income, taking into consideration the number of family members. That’s how serious the partners-in-education are with the applications they receive every year.
“A scholarship can change a person’s life, so we want to go through the applications thoroughly to ensure that deserving students get a chance to further their studies,” Parmispery said.
All 29 Star Education Fund partner institutions sent their representatives last week to Menara Star to vet the applications. Shortlisted applicants will be called for an interview soon.
Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman vice-president (student development and alumni relations) Assoc Prof Dr Teh Chee Seng said he received over 100 applications, with 95% of the applicants from middle and lower income groups.
“The competition is tough. I look for students who have good aptitude and communication skills,” he said.
SEGi University College deputy registrar Norman Chu said a statement of purpose would help the selection committee know and understand the applicants better. However, students should not make up any stories to earn sympathy from the committee.
“We want to hear the true story. This is not the time for creative writing. Cut to the chase and tell us your story as concise as possible in your essay,” he said.
KDU University College admissions and bursary department senior manager Kwan Kow Cheun said he would normally use the interview as an opportunity to verify some of the details given by the applicants.
The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus director of research for Faculty of Engineering Prof Dr Andrew Chan said applicants should be prepared for the interview.
“There are questions that you could anticipate and prepare for them. We will look at your financial needs, academic performance and extra-curricular activities,” he said.
The institution’s School of Computer Science assistant professor Chew Sze-Ker concurred, noting that applicants should have strong communication skills.
While it is a good idea to highlight your strengths and achievements to the selection committee during the interview, don’t go overboard.
“Some applicants ‘oversell’ themselves during the interview which can send out a wrong message,” said Brickfields Asia College chief operations officer Aria Singham.
The top five contributors are The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, INTI International University and Colleges, UCSI University Foundation, Sunway University and Singapore Institute of Management.
Other contributors are Brickfields Asia College; Equator Academy of Art, Penang; GIST-GEM Global College; HELP University College; IACT College; KDU College, Penang; KDU University College; Kolej Tunku Abdul Rahman; Kuala Lumpur Infrastructure University College; Limkokwing University of Creative Technology; Methodist College Kuala Lumpur; Multimedia University; PJ College of Art & Design; Raffles International College; Saito College; SEGi University College, SEGi College Kuala Lumpur; SEGi College Subang Jaya; Sentral Technology College Penang; Singapore Institute of Management; Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak Campus; Taylor’s University; The One Academy; The Otomotif College and Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman.