Making a difference: HWUM empowers the underserved together with The Kalsom Movement

Published:
The Kalsom Movement Collab

Heriot-Watt University Malaysia (HWUM) is proud to be one of the strategic partners and co-sponsors of The Kalsom Movement (28th series) Summer Programmes. The programmes, namely Confidence Through English Programme (CEP) and Entrepreneurship and Innovation Camp (EIC), were held on 6 - 7 August 2022 at our campus in Putrajaya.

The Kalsom Movement is an independent and voluntary student-led charity movement that aims to tackle education inequality in Malaysia by bridging the knowledge and opportunity gap faced by underprivileged students, regardless of gender, race and religion, resulting in an impactful contribution to the development of society and the nation. 

This student-led motivational camp is organised annually in August by Malaysian university student-leaders since 1994. The Movement became a fully registered youth-led organisation in 2012.

The objective of the Movement aligns with HWUM's 1821 Appeal – Leaders with Impact Scholarship programme which supports our university's vision to enable talented underserved students to access a Heriot-Watt education by providing not only educational financial support, but also to build career and life skills, regardless of their background or circumstances in life. The scholarship supports Malaysian youth from B40 families to provide opportunities for greater participation and inclusivity as well as to improve the quality of lives of B40 community.

This collaboration between HWUM and The Kalsom Movement helps to empower underserved students with the awakened potential to pursue excellence in life and to develop their capacity to contribute to society through holistic development. Additionally, as a student-led movement promoting volunteerism among university graduates and empowering through inspiration, HWUM encourages our graduates/student-participants to see themselves as agents of change, to know that they can make a difference in someone's life through their individual strengths. 

On 6 and 7 August, HWUM hosted the camp and welcomed more than 150 students/beneficiaries from SMK Kota Kemuning and SMK Putrajaya Presint 9 (1). The CEP facilitators have organised interactive English learning sessions to encourage the students/beneficiaries to embrace their confidence in speaking English. Students/beneficiaries of the EIC were exposed to business modules and entrepreneurship skills and how to become resourceful innovators.

At the end of the programme, the students/beneficiaries were able to master the four pillars of The Kalsom Movement, which are; 

  • Increase proficiency in the English language
  • Equipped with academic and non-academic skills 
  • Exposed to Post-Secondary Education opportunities
  • Nurtured to be enthusiastic about helping people in need and giving back to society

The prizegiving and closing ceremony was graced by our Chief Operating Officer (COO) & Registrar, Ms. Janice Yew and Principal of SMK Kota Kemuning, Mr. Fauzi Zailan. 

In her speech, Ms. Janice Yew thanked the Principal of SMK Kota Kemuning and SMK Putrajaya Presint 9 (1). She also thanked the teachers and the amazing Kalsom Movement facilitators for their hard work and dedication in giving the students/beneficiaries such a wonderful learning experience. 

She added, "I was so impressed by all of you, and I am so glad to hear that you have had a good time. It is our 10th Anniversary in Malaysia, but we are a 200-years old university. As part of our 1821 Appeal project, we have started to provide ten scholarships every year, including the cost of living for underserved students to come and study with us. So, our vision is very aligned with The Kalsom Movement to support underserved students. Heriot-Watt would love to welcome you back! Thank you for inspiring us!"

Below are what the students/beneficiaries have to say about the programme:

"This camp has exceeded my expectation. I have met many new friends, and all the helpful and friendly facilitators were great teachers. The activities have built my confidence to speak my mind and be brave in presenting my ideas, it also helps me to think of what I want to pursue in the future in terms of my education."
- Ang Kai Xin, SMK Kota Kemuning

 "I expected the English camp to have strict facilitators - that we can only speak English, but it turns out that the facilitators were so helpful and friendly in teaching us to speak confidently. I was shy at first, but as we all got to know each other throughout the camp, I found myself more confident, especially to step up and speak in front of many people. My favourite moment is when my facilitators applauded and praised me when I did something new in the EIC Programme, and I got it right."
- Aziqrul Amin Kamarulizam, SMK Putrajaya Presint 9 (1)

 "I have amazing teammates and am so grateful to be part of this programme. Heriot-Watt University Malaysia is amazing, and it has a good study environment. I really enjoyed the "Engineer for a Day" programme with Heriot-Watt's lecturer, Ms. Shieela, and also the talk by Dr. Ian Tan from the Mathematical & Computer Sciences School. I hope The Kalsom Movement will have more collaborations to organise camps like these in the future. It's really fun!"
- Chan Wei Hao, SMK Kota Kemuning

 "The most exciting part of the camp is learning about Heriot-Watt University Malaysia through the HWUM Slot, as the university is in Malaysia, UK and Dubai, and it is actually 200 years old. It was fun learning all about the history and heritage of the university. The key takeaway for me is the Marketing and Entrepreneurship skills that we learned in the EIC programme as it is a skill I need to help my family's small businesses."
- Delilah Farzana Ahmad Nizam, SMK Kota Kemuning