Heriot-Watt University Malaysia (HWUM) and Yayasan Tunku Abdul Rahman (YTAR) joined hands for 'Closing the Gap 2023' (CTG 2023) Residential Camp. The camp, which was held from 26 – 30 August 2023, was hosted on HWUM campus.
Continuing the success of last year's CTG 2022 programme, this is the second time HWUM and YTAR have teamed up to organise the camp. This year, we welcomed 65 secondary school students across Malaysia (Form 4 and Form 5 students).
Closing The Gap (CTG) was an independent initiative founded in 2016 and supported under YTAR since 2019 to assist students in identifying their passion, determining what they wish to pursue in life, and ultimately coaching and guiding them to reach that destination. The programme offers guidance through mentoring to help students set their university goals before they leave school to pursue tertiary education.
During the camp, students were mentored by HWUM academics through various workshops in Business, Psychology, and Engineering to spark their interest and gain a clear understanding of their passion, skills, and needs to achieve their higher education goals. They were guided to understand the pathways and opportunities available to them as they began identifying potential career paths.
The CTG 2023 Residential Camp wrapped up with a heartwarming Closing Dinner on 29 August 2023, celebrating students' achievements and growth. The event allowed students to reflect on their journey during the five-day camp, sharing their experiences on how the camp has helped them improve their communication and presentation skills, interviews, and gained new friendships.
Participant Hana Fatihah, from SMK Sierramas said, "In this camp, I learned tips on applying for scholarships and how to handle scholarship interviews. Additionally, during the workshops, I find that finance and accounting are interesting. Through these workshops, I gained a clear understanding on how to shape my career."
Another participant, Ian Irwin Dennis, from SMK (L) Methodist Sentul said, "I learned various tips on how to approach scholarship interviews, and the engineering course is interesting. The workshop helped me understand the demands, requirements, and various career paths in the engineering field."
Several students also highlighted their intention to recommend the programme to others.
The student's engaging performances enriched the event. The event's highlight was when our Provost and Chief Executive Officer, Professor Mushtak Al-Atabi, stood with the students to pledge, showing their commitment to learning.