500 new students enrol at UBD

National 2 minutes, 22 seconds


UNIVERSITI Brunei Darussalam yesterday welcomed its new intake of 500 students.

Among the students were the first batch of the university’s Masters in Public Policy and Management programme.

Speaking during the UBD Freshers Week, UBD Vice-chancellor Dato Paduka Dr Hj Zulkarnain Hj Hanafi said the programme focused on nurturing excellence in policy skills and management quality.

“The programme is designed for leaders seeking to make influential and relevant impact in policy studies, with a concentration in natural resources and environmental policy and management,” he said.

The new programme is offered in partnership with several universities, including Georgetown University, Duke University, University of Maryland and the University of California, Barkely.

He said UBD always updates its curriculum to help mould students in accordance with the Malay, Islam Monarchy philosophy, and to strengthen the Brunei identity.

“This includes introducing the new mandatory module, “Islamic Civilisation and the Modern World”.

“Apart from the new module, students are advised to be always up-to-date with current issues both locally and internationally, such as fully understanding the content of the Syariah Penal Code,” he said.

He said university education does not mean obtaining a scroll, but preparing oneself to be an individual who is flexible, competitive and able to adapt to challenges.

“Your priorities may change; your perceptions will also shift; there will be a change in mindset and you will have to adapt and move out of your comfort zone. This self-actualisation journey will be an exciting one, but remember that the way you step up to these challenges will determine the kind of person you are, and what you are capable of achieving,” he said.

Dato Dr Hj Zulkarnain said the GenNext programme was designed specifically to foster skills where students would be able to think critically, communicate, be innovative, have quantitative skills and equipped with a national and global outlook.

To achieve the vision, every undergraduate must be able to possess cross-discipline knowledge through the Discovery Year programme which promotes experiential learning, the vice-chancellor said.

Students were required to spend a year out of university to gain experience through the programme.

“So far, around 70 per cent of students have undergone the Discovery Year programme overseas such as to US, UK, Australia and other countries in Asia,” he said.

The vice-chancellor also advised the students to participate in co-curriculum activities, such as sports or become club members and contribute to the communities.

Dato Dr Hj Zulkarnain said UBD had recently opened a one-stop centre called Student Central where its main functions included handling all matters related to the university’s services and academic administration, such as enrolment, management and funding.

He also called on the students to work together and share ideas with the Students Affairs Section or Student Representative Council to make the campus livelier with positive, productive and safe co-curriculum activities.

The Brunei Times