An exciting visit from Waseda University of Tokyo, Japan

SIDMA College, UNITAR International University Sabah Regional Centre felt very honoured for being given the privilege to receive a group of students from Waseda University of Tokyo who were here on a one-day visit to pave ways for a collaborative educational project at SK Libang, Ranau in the month of August –September 2015.

Their arrival on 26 February 2015 was warmly received by Prof Dr. Morni Hj Kambrie (SIDMA Chairman), Puan Azlina Ngatimin (Director, Corporate Relations and Business Development), Puan Azizah Khalid Merican (CEO), Managers, Heads of Department, Staff, Students Representative Counsel Committee and students of SIDMA College, UNITAR Sabah

SIDMA Dance Club, Prima Dansa, also put up a special dance performance to welcome SIDMA’s special guests.

According to Dr. Yukino Iwai, the Project Director, the visit was part of their on-going Borneo Project (BP)under the management of Waseda University Hirayama Ikuo Volunteer Centre (WAVOC). The main role of WAVOC is implementing the social contributions of Waseda University, and to support its students by providing a systematic platform for them to venture and experience realities of society and developing individual human strengths.

BP, which is very similar to its 20 to 30 other international volunteer projects operates on a very hands-on mode, whereby students confirm, apply, and  practice lessons and theories learnt in their academic setting through their real-life encounters.  At the same time, they collaborate and corporate with a variety of partners, proposed action plans and perform team management skills thus developing individual human strength and create the aptitude for excellent performance in society.Through such voluntary activities, it provides an opportunity for the students to come into contact with the realities of society, dubbing it as a system of sending students into authentic fields.

Touching on the Waseda University visit, this Japanese group was at SIDMA College to collaborate and plan together a local educational project at SK Libang, Ranau.a rural primary school in the northern part of Sabah, for their second visit in sometime August / September 2015.

This pioneer visit is more of a fact-gathering mission whereby they get to learn more about their SIDMA counterparts on the Malaysian Education system and its background, the students learning styles, the social and cultural background of the SK Libang, as well as the education programmes that both parties can agree upon which would be beneficial to the SK. Libang community.  This is so that the students of Waseda University are able to present their findings to their university prior to the implementation stage on their second visit.As pointed out by Dr.Yukino, Japan has very limited resources about Sabah, and through such initiatives, he hoped that it will pave ways for further collaborations which in the long run will benefit Waseda University and SIDMA College, UNITAR Sabah.

Prof Dr. Morni welcomed the initiatives taken by Dr Yukino to collaborate with SIDMA College as part of their strategies to conduct more effective educational Borneo Projects in Sabah. He too hoped that this meeting would serve as a starting point for more of such meaningful and fruitful meetings. Together, both parties are able to conduct worthwhileand effective educational projects that can be of benefit to the people of Sabah. He also advised SIDMA students to continue the working relationship via this Japan-Sabah connection so as to be able to extend it to their studies, education, as well as their professional development.

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