My Journey of Continuous Education – Sem 5

One and a half year has passed and I had just completed my 5th semester – all my 10 core and elective courses done. Wondering if it is age factor or what, that I find it getting tougher. This semester seems to be the toughest of them all. I thought, as I go from sem to sem, it should get lighter and easier!

5th sem was the most demanding of all whereby we were required to do mini theses. Meaning, theses that are shrunk into 10-20 pages. Lit reviews, field interviews for research studies, etc. When a thesis is long, we usually face the challenge of getting sufficient content. Conversely, when a thesis is supposed to be short, the great challenge is to “downsize” it by at least 10 times its usual size but, with all important contents remain. No more group projects this semester. One had to do it from A to Z!

Despite the frequent complaints from the heart and tired mind, I found this semester to be most fruitful. Never had I push myself so hard before. Working, playing the role of a mother to my teenager and tweenager, attending social functions and overseas delegations with dear hubby and burning midnight oils to complete my assignments/project papers. Sleeping at 2am+ was a norm, right till the end of the semester, the final exams. Stressed and drained. Amazing where all those energy came from every morning when I woke up…!

What was most fulfilling was that I learnt a lot from the lecturers. They demand for higher standard of works and that pushed us to meet that requirements. My heartfelt thanks to Dr Rizal and Dr Saiful. I told my children, one of the contributing factors of my “survival” was “when the goings get tough, I get tougher”. Also, I kept telling myself that survival and completion of each semester are not options. Just as passing the exams is not an option.

You can’t imagine how many times I read companies’ annual reports, which I had not done before. I did not need to because in the course of my work, someone else would do the reading and analyzing and then compile the reports neatly for my usage. This time around, I had to be on my hands and knees doing the works, reading, understanding and analysing the companies under study. It is a whole load of works but when I finally print and bind the project papers, my heart swell with pride having in my hands, the fruit of my hard labour. I know that I had given my very best to every piece of my work because I spent many nights and small hours going over and over again to perfect them to my satisfaction for the final prints.

During these last two courses, I am most grateful to my ever-loving and supportive husband, children, parents, my wonderful colleagues and Facebook Friends! Not to forget my wonderful classmates too! They were on the sidelines cheering me on, especially when I was at the edge of giving up. Thank you and love you all.

My last challenge is the following two semesters, the last. This one is the finale… dissertation. I have to think of a topic to write about, something related to corporate finance, come up with research proposal and then submit to my potential supervisor. Once he or she agrees to take me under the wings, then shall I apply to the Uni before I could start the ball rolling. That’s when the clock start ticking again. Now, thinking of a topic itself is a heavy task. Inspiration….where are thee…

Merger and Acquisition? Corporate Governance? Fellow Uni-mates have been most helpful, sharing ideas with me. Can’t thank you all enough… Liew, Radzi, Fariza. Finally, thanks to my favourite cousin, Ken Teh and his charming wife, for the invaluable advice shared over lunch.

Now, I have to do my part and do it well. Choosing the right topic is of utmost importance, just as important as a singing talent selecting her songs to perform. The choice could either break you or build you. This shall be the last lap to finish line. I envision myself to be one of the participants in the 2014 UUM Convocation. With blessings from so many supportive people around me and God willing, I shall achieve it.

This is it….results should be out by the first week of January 2014. Fingers crossed. Meanwhile, I am going to pamper myself and my family for a while.

~ AliceN.

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Sixteen years ago, you greeted the world with eagerness….you responded to your daddy voice as if you had been hearing it for the longest time. You opened your eyes shortly after to get a glimpse of the new world, your world! You are special to us. Makes me feel that It was only yesterday you were born into this world and into our family. Anyway, Happy Sweet Sixteen!!!

You know, son? You got everyone busy at your arrival. Our colleagues were so eager to visit immediately after your birth. Bless them. However, in less than 24 hours, you were down with high fever. Everyone had to pay much attention to this VIP Baby, so said the nurses at that time – “The One and Only VIP baby”. Your pediatrician, bless him, dutifully got the nurses to provide 4-hourly progress report to us and Dr Deng himself would visit us every evening to let us know your condition. All in all, I guess, with all the love and attention, you responded well by giving it a good fight and got well. What great relief it was for all of us. It was great joy to bring you home finally! We knew then, you are a fighter or rather, a survivor, dear son.

You always have a special place in everyone’s heart. Everyone who comes in contact with you. With your easy smile, laughter and kindness. You have a good heart, son. I’m not saying all these just because I am your mom, but there are collection of compliments I received from the receivers of your charm. I hope that all these qualities shall remain in you always as you grow up and face the whole wide world. Let not the hard world change you into a cold stranger. Instead, let the experience mould you into someone who can make differences, positive changes for yourself and the world around you.

Growing up, I saw a great young man slowly taking shape. I am so proud of you, son. My wish is that you’ll always be who you really are and be proud of it; no matter how big you become, or how successful you are, always have your two feet planted firmly on the ground. Remember the values we impart to you – that shall be your guiding light always.

My dearest son, Happy Birthday and I love you, sweetheart.

Love always,