Saturday, December 18, 2010

Monash - what are the alternatives?


Late November I went to a friend's niece wedding and while the ceremony was on going, I had my small chat with one of the uncles. Soon our conversation zoom in into our children and their education and since he was more senior that I, I asked him about colleges he had considered for his children.

SEGI, he said, because you would get good discounts as bumi.

Oh, really?

He went on to explain which I would rather not say it here, but on the other hand I was not convinced. You would send your children to a college based on what discounts they would give?


Sunway University College Open Day

So after Monash the weekend before, it is only natural that we went to Sunway University College in Sunway for their open day today.

I thought I should have done this a long time ago as it opens up our minds - the boys and I, and I thought I should share what I found out in this blog. I am thinking out loud here, so please excuse me if I sound brash. I am just re-stating on what I found out this morning.

Monash Uni Foundation Year
So it would cost us RM21,600.00 for anyone to do the MUFY to enter Monash. It has four intakes a year, and one can enter using forecast results. In other words, immediately after your SPM, you could be doing your foundation immediately in January.

I am not sure if one would get an SPM hangover.

To get in Monash Engineering, you would need a score of 305 or an average of 76.5% of your four subjects, while for computer science you need a score of 67.5%. NOthing fanciful I guess, but then again this is not SPM, where every student would score straight As, which are quite meaningless to grade a student's achievement nowadays.

Yes, one can still enter other universities if you wish as the results from MUFY are accepted for university entrances in Australia specifically. Heck, I was told you can enter UK and US universities, but if you were doing MUFY, why would you want to consider universities beyond Australia.

The good thing about the foundation year program is that they are modular. Typically you would be grade by 50% coursework and 50% exam, so if you are consistent, you should be ok.

I thought the MUFY and Sunway is just fine. I did not visit their facilities, so I would not be able to comment much. May be we will revisit them later, as I was rushing to attend a friend's son's wedding in Pandan Jaya in the afternoon.

Performing Arts
Since we were there already, we decided to stop by at the performing art's faculty. I thought with their skills in piano, guitar and violin and good grounding in music theory, they would have an advantage here. The performing art here is mostly theater centric, and audio visual specialization. From the curriculum, I believe it is good for creating a well rounded personality in this area, and even for someone which have no intention to be in the entertainment business.

I was quite impressed with the video production done by their student; a couple of them quite watchable and artistic, but I am not sure if this faculty is for Akmal and Arif as I would prefer them to specialize particularly in music, either in performance or music composition.

One can proceed to Uni of Deakin in Melbourne or Uni of Tasmania if one wishes to continue on to the degree level.


American Transfer Program
Since we are here; same statement as above.

You would do two years at Sunway and then the next two years at a university in the US; the example given for Western Michigan University. It is definitely costlier, as the cost a a reasonably good university would set you at least RM110,000.00 poorer.

Per annum, mind you.

So for Akmal and Arif to get a degree from US, I would need to fork out at least a quarter of a million ringgit.

Huh? Do I have the money?

I would need to think hard for me to consider this, to be honest.


Yes, one can get a room on twin sharing basis (or eight in an apartment). One would pay about RM500 per month up to RM900 depending on whether they are air-conditioned or not. If Akmal were to do his MUFY here, I am not sure if I want him to drive daily to school. It would probably be easier if he were to stay on campus and concentrate on getting good grades for his examination.

I am not sure, but it is available, if need be.


Please don't mind me. I am just thinking out aloud, while sharing the information here with everybody. Please do not have the impression that I have the money to finance Akmal without batting an eye lid. The fees are quite a burden I must admit, and I have no idea at this moment on how to finance his education.

But my purpose is to open up Arif and Akmal's minds as to what's available out there. We always think of IPTA for our children; there are others out there with similar quality or even better, and I think it is about time we start competing in the open market and not rely on our status as the favoured sons of soil.

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