Fellows like Cikgu Loh have inspired me to become a better person ever since. Having teachers that could spark great chemistry with the students (especially those in the B40 community) is bound to make a significant difference. It has led me to representing the state at national-level tournaments in archery since I was 16.
Throughout her secondary school years, she has been guided by various Fellows in her school, and with Project ID, such as Loh Chee Hoo ‘14, Kelvin Tan ‘12, Joyce Ching ‘12, Elizabeth Wong ‘14, Kamil Hakimie ‘14, Ang Chiew Teng ‘17, Ivanka Fam ‘17 and Sofea Hafek ‘19.
Loh Chee Hoo is a 2014 Alumnus who graduated from Universiti Sains Malaysia with Applied Statistics. He is a Teaching Alumnus and and is currently involved with Project ID.
Sofea Hafek is a 2019 Alumna who graduated from Cardiff University with a Masters in Science. She is currently working with Grab.
After 4 restless months, 3 rounds of the application process and holding on to good things in life, I managed to be selected as a successful candidate for the 2022 Global Korea Scholarship and will soon be pursuing Computer Sciences & Engineering in Korea.
Then, in Form 4, I encountered Cikgu Brian. He was a 2012 Fellow and was a dedicated teacher that saw and encouraged my potential in Mathematics. Cikgu Brian selected me for a Mathematical Olympiad, which became the first step of inspiration for me to take up accounting in Form 6. To sustain my studies, I continued working at restaurants during the weekends, and later achieved a 3.75 CGPA.
Shawn and Brian’s story was instrumental in the birth of Closing The Gap, a programme that aims to empower high-potential, under-represented students with the knowledge, skills and mindset to enter universities and achieve their fullest potential. Closing The Gap has impacted 284 Scholars from 65 schools nationwide to navigate the complexities of the post-SPM landscape and help them get into universities.
Her best subject was art. She is a really remarkable artist - that’s what I know about her. Once, I wanted to understand her more, so I asked her to tell me about her family. When she refused to talk, I asked her to draw instead. From the drawing, I knew that she had an older sister and a younger brother.
Perhaps, teaching is not a profession, but a passion.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, schools were closed and I didn't manage to contact her much. I still feel some regret for not being able to make a bigger impact on her.
Now in 2022, Lisa is in Form 5 and it’s her last year in school. The day before Teacher's Day celebration, she texted me saying, "Teacher, thank you for everything you have given to me all this while. I rarely go out of my house so I decided to draw something for you."
Most crocodile attack incidents recorded in Malaysia take place in Sarawak, a state where I was posted during my Fellowship. With the support of Curtin University’s Office of Research and Development and the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM), I assisted my students in designing a simple electronic signalling system that could serve as an alarm or early warning system to alert the riverine community whenever crocodiles were detected in nearby rivers. The students were required to demonstrate their concepts and designs using Arduino electronic kits and basic programming. As a result, my students won the Gold award in the Curtin Croc Challenge.
own communities, while exposing them to knowledge and opportunities that go beyond the 4 walls of a classroom.
Beyond my Fellowship, I also brought 2 students to visit Parlimen Negara in 2019 to witness a historical moment
where all MPs came up with a unanimous vote to pass the Bill to lower the voting age from 21 to 18 years old.
He represented Malaysia at the Qudwa Global Teachers’ Forum in Abu Dhabi, UAE in 2017. He was also a participant in the 2018 Honeywell Educators Space Academy (HESA) at the U.S. Space & Rocket Centre (USSRC) in Huntsville, Alabama, USA.
Syafiq is currently pursuing his MSc Education at The University of Edinburgh. He believes that it is vital for educators to learn more about cognitive behavioural strategies to empower students in taking ownership of their own learning, and thus become critical thinkers and independent learners.
Throughout my school life, he would always provide students with lots of opportunities to explore outside of what we know and see what's there in the world. Technology exhibitions, university visits, and even just calling us out for lunch. Going the extra mile wasn't an easy thing to do, but whenever he saw a student's interest in something, he would do something for them. Beyond enthusiasm for teaching, he had a deep care for his students and wanted us to find what we love and give us an opportunity to explore.
Gan Jia Huey was a student of Zhi Xiong at SMK Puchong Batu 14. After high school, she pursued a degree in Psychology at Sunway University. Currently, Jia Huey is a 2022 Cohort Fellow, teaching in a school in Perak. She is the first student of a Teach For Malaysia Fellow to become a Fellow herself.
I believed in Alif’s potential and brought him to the Inspire Southeast Asia Camp, an initiative that was held in collaboration with TFM. I had previously volunteered at the Camp as a facilitator in 2014, which was how I learned about TFM and was inspired to become a teacher and empower students from low socioeconomic backgrounds. The camp played an important role in my own life, and it had also inspired Alif to improve his studies.
Beyond exams, I introduced Alif to sports and encouraged him to participate in innovation competitions and digital poster making. Winning those competitions helped him to discover his potential and believe that he was capable.
Cohort 2 Teacher
It’s my belief that everyone should start on the same playing field. I took the initiative to provide my students with basic necessities like pencils, books, and even socks, all to ensure that everyone had an adequate footing when learning in class. The fact that my students lacked these items was already a concern.
After my STPM, I had applied to many public universities to continue furthering my studies, but I was offered no placement. My only option was to enrol in a private university, something I tremendously lacked funds for. It was only with the guidance of caring individuals that encouraged me to apply for a scholarship, that I would go on to complete my business degree in a private university.
I’ve learned a few lessons along the way - don’t take yourself too seriously, treat others as you wish to be treated, always observe with a long-term perspective, listen and consider everything as an opportunity, value your service and respect your peers, colleagues and most importantly stakeholders. It’s been a wonderful journey with a lot of challenges, commitment, and new learnings such as interpersonal skills and having a positive attitude.
Thank you. I cherish and enjoy every minute of it.