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Home  > Media Hub > Press Releases 2017
UCSI Promotes Love for Science and Maths
15 July 2017

The champions (Chong Hwa Independent High School, KL), 1st runner-up (SMJK Chung Hwa Confucian, Penang), 2nd runner-up (Chong Hwa Independent High School, KL) and 3rd runner-up (Penang Chinese Girls’ High School) with Asst. Prof. Alice Phua Choon Yen, Director for Centre for Pre-U Studies, Willie Tan, Vice-President for Student Enrolment Centre and Assoc Prof Dr Mabel Tan, President and CEO of UCSI College.

The strain and nervousness on the faces of each competing team member as they await the quiz questions.

The audience was kept suspenseful about the answers and scores as the quiz wore on.

Associate Professor Ir. Dr Jimmy Mok Vee Hoong read out UCSI Vice-Chancellor and President’s Welcome Note and urged the audience to be a part of the 4th Industrial Revolution.

Quiz Master, James Low, lightened up the intense mood with his funny jests at the competing youngsters.

Kuala Lumpur: Chong Hwa Independent High School came back with a vengeance this year when both their teams emerged as top winners at UCSI's Science and Maths Quiz 2017. The first team consisting of Takeda Shigenori, Tan Wei Xuan, Chan Tin Ping beat out Penang's SMJK Chung Hwa Confucian team (Yau Yong Sheng, Tan Yi Chun, Lee Zong Yu) by 3 points and walked away with the top prize of RM1000 cash, certificates and full tuition fee bursaries. The first runners-up took home cash prize RM500, certificates and partial tuition fee bursaries.

Chong Hwa's second team (Ong Xin Jiong, Zhang Shi Hong, Lim Jun Hong) took home the 3rd prize of RM300, certificates and partial tuition fee bursaries while Penang Chinese Girls' High School (Oh Yong Xin, Ling Vee Nis, Lim Ai Lin), the only all-girl team to make it to the finals, had to settle for 3rd runner-up. The finals which saw the top 4 teams compete was intense and nerve-wracking as competing teams tried to outdo each other in being the first to press the buzzer to answer. The top two teams were way ahead of the other two in terms of score. The Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths quiz questions were sometimes indirect in the form of application and some were also tricky leaving even audiences stunned.

According to Mr Low Meng Wha, Chung Hwa's Mathematics teacher, the school's Science and Maths Club is primarily to coach and prepare members for competitions such as this quiz. He added that his students worked hard for many weeks preparing for this competition by indulging in discussions and Maths Olympiad style quizzes.

"We are very happy to win and it's not only for the prizes but also because we want to earn a good name for ourselves, our teachers and our school,” added Tan Wei Xuan, one of the team members.

Yau Yong Sheng from the 1st runner-up team shared that it was actually a good-natured bet with their teacher to win the competition but unfortunately, he admitted, they made some mistakes along the way which made them lose out. However, his team mates agreed that they had a good time throughout. 16 out of 182 teams made it through to the semi-finals after state-level challenges in Perak, Penang, Klang Valley and Johor.

The quiz is one of UCSI's many initiatives to promote greater interest in Science and Maths, which form the foundation of all STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic) disciplines. Declining enrolment in the science stream and STEM undergraduate courses is a major concern for Malaysia which is targeting a 60 : 40 ratio of science to arts students; sadly, the reality is a reverse of this. To compete and succeed in today's dynamic global landscape, Malaysia needs a qualified STEM workforce to drive science and innovation. Underlining the severity and importance of this issue, a new policy – National Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Transformation Plan - is being drafted to address and reverse this troubling trend.

In his welcome note which was read out by Associate Professor Ir. Dr Jimmy Mok Vee Hoong who is UCSI University's Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Student Affairs & Alumni, Vice-Chancellor and President, Senior Professor Dato' Dr Khalid Yusoff urged the audience to adopt a culture of lifelong learning and love for knowledge. He also highlighted the importance of promoting greater interest in Science and Maths amongst young people by engaging their natural curiosity and adopting non-traditional teaching and learning methods.

"One strategy identified in the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013-2025 is engaging student awareness through hands-on learning experience such as science camps or fairs, popularising science through mass media, and organising more participatory events such as competitions and debates – It is by doing that learning is most effective" asserts Dato' Dr Khalid Yusoff.

"The Science and Technology Human Capital Road Map states that Malaysia needs 500,000 science stream graduates to provide enough human capital to accelerate the country's growth and achieve developed nation status by 2020. We believe this Quiz is the right platform to cultivate love for Science and Maths amongst secondary school students," adds Assoc Prof Dr Mabel Tan who is President and CEO of UCSI College.

Before Prof Dr Mabel Tan gave away prizes to the winners, the audience was treated to a very inspiring motivational talk by Associate Professor Ir. Dr Jimmy Mok Vee Hoong. All the competing teams received certificates of participation and hampers.

"Without prejudice to the rights of UCSI the information herein is correct at the time of printing and UCSI reserves the right to make amendments without prior notice."
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