UNISSA Alumni Association to help boost marketability of graduates
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE Universiti Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA) Alumni Association was officially launched yesterday with the aim of helping to protect the interests and welfare of its members in all aspects including intellectual and economic.
Speaking during the launch, UNISSA Rector Dr Hj Norarfan Hj Zainal, said that with the establishment of the alumni association, UNISSA is committed to helping alumni members develop individual capabilities and skill proficiency by organising activities, courses and workshops to meet the demands of the job market.
“We are all aware that currently youths are facing many challenges, among which is competing for jobs,” he said.
Dr Hj Norarfan stressed that it would be committed to help members who are searching for jobs and waiting for permanent jobs to become more independent.
He noted that it was time for the university’s alumni to establish an official association “under the umbrella” of UNISSA adding that this is commonly practiced internationally and within the region.
Citing a titah by His Majesty Sultan Hj Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah, the Sultan and Yang-Di Pertuan Of Brunei Darussalam during the eight National Youth Day celebrations in 2013, Dr Hj Norarfan said that there were around 18,000 youths who were looking for jobs.
“However, according to the latest statistics, unemployment has reduced to 12,175 individuals, and this data is still at a level that is worrying,” he said.
The purpose of establishing the association, among others is so that it can become a platform for uniting all UNISSA graduates and become a channel of communication between the alumni and the university’s administration as well as the general public.
For example, he said, last year, the ad-hoc organising committee held an entrepreneurship workshop with LiveWIRE Brunei.
The workshop was held as a stepping stone to develop the graduates interest in entrepreneurship as well as change their mindset towards changing their attitudes of relying too much on the government for jobs which are becoming increasingly limited.
Therefore, through the skills taught during the activities, it can help graduates to continue to excel in skills training, become motivated to progress further and be more disciplined.
Dr Hj Norarfan expressed hopes that the association, which will be led by its president Hj Md Syazwan Hj Md Zain, will be able to plan and carry out beneficial programmes for the benefit of the alumni.
He also urged alumni members to strengthen cooperation and commitment, and said that he believed members will be able to contribute their time, knowledge and expertise for UNISSA’s continued progress as well as the country’s.
The Brunei Times