At the Anugerah Cemerlang Ceremony

I was awarded with the Excellence Award for my effort last year and was invited to the certificate giving ceremony at the Dewan Tuanku Canselor. It was a nice change from the routine and I got to wear my batik. On the circulated letter, it said I had to report at 8 am. I did so and I soon realised that it was a mistake. I wasted an hour and a half sitting around. At least I managed to get a few emails and stuff sorted out.

The ceremony started by a speech from the Vice Chancellor. As you probably have read, University Malaya reached the ranking of 180 in the latest THES University ranking published recently. I was bracing myself for some bragging in his speech. I was pleasantly surprised however that not only he did not say any of that, his speech actually made sense. He was concerned about the state of the spoken English amongst the UM Graduates and feels that something needed to be done. I remember that in the first year I joined UM, and was asked to look at my students case reports, I was appalled at the level of their writing in English. The grammar was all over the place and they just cannot put their thoughts in the essays coherently! I then marked the student down, and was later called up to be told that I should not mark them down because of the language. Hmm! Good luck!

During dinner just now, I spoke to one of my colleague and he agreed with the assessment. A typical case report from my student will read something along the line of; "He admit because he was dry. He did drink for 3 days. He also did not eat for 4 days." Huh? Worse still, the "he" may suddenly changed into a "she" in mid-paragraph! This is not a graduate I want to associate with!