Yayasan Sime Darby (YSD) awarded 209 scholarships and bursaries worth more than RM17 million to deserving youths to pursue their tertiary studies at top learning institutions and universities locally and overseas, during a virtual ceremony held today.
Since the inception of YSD almost four decades ago, Education has remained at the forefront of its focus. The recipients of 2021’s scholarships and bursaries are notably diverse in their backgrounds and academic pursuits.
This year, the YSD ‘Star’ Scholarship Award is presented to Ms. Aaliyah Yoong Hanifah, a national waterskiing talent, for her to pursue a tertiary education in Psychology. This prestigious scholarship, previously awarded to the likes of golfer Kelly Tan and track cyclist Dato’ Azizulhasni Awang, will facilitate Aaliyah’s journey towards becoming the World Champion in waterski.
Additionally, Mr. Chrishen Robert Gomez, also a Merdeka Award Grant recipient, has received the YSD Environment Scholarship Award to pursue a PhD in Zoology at Oxford University with the aim of developing a genetic-based model to conserve the Sunda Clouded leopard in Sabah.
In our support of the special needs community, YSD presented 28 scholars with the Special Needs Bursary Award. One of these inspirational recipients is Nur Sabrina binti Mohd Shafawi, who is hearing impaired. She is currently pursuing a Degree in Information Technology at UiTM Shah Alam and was the recipient of the Anugerah Kecemerlangan Pelajar Kurang Upaya SPM Negeri Johor in 2017.
YSD Chairman, Y.A.M. Tunku Tan Sri Imran Ibni Almarhum Tuanku Ja’afar, officiated the Scholarship Award Ceremony and said “Despite the various challenges that today’s youth are facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the accompanying movement and learning restrictions, we continue to be impressed by their tenacity and resilience. 85% of our scholars this year come from underprivileged families who are the hardest hit by these turbulent times, and they are seizing the opportunity to shape a better future for themselves and their families.
With the increasing reliance on digital learning, while we continue to support our Excellence scholars with laptops, YSD had committed almost RM1 million to provide laptops to 400 ongoing bursary scholars from B40 families. It is our intention to reduce the education gap in the country.”
From the Excellence category, YSD has awarded 22 students with outstanding academic achievements and strong leadership qualities, with scholarships worth more than RM9.55 million to pursue pre-university and undergraduate studies at top learning institutions and universities in Malaysia and the United Kingdom.
In support of continuous learning among Sime Darby employees, YSD is also supporting 11 employees with scholarships totalling almost RM1 million. YSD is also providing tertiary education support to 31 recipients under the Employees’ Children Education programme worth RM1.35 million.
In total, 176 scholars from underprivileged backgrounds are awarded scholarships and bursaries amounting to RM6.68 million. Inhonouring and supporting individuals who are differently-abled,YSD has also provided more than RM859,000 worth of bursaries to the 28 recipients under the YSD Special Needs Bursary Programme. It is hoped that by providing them with the financial assistance to pursue certificate, diploma and undergraduate degrees, these special individuals have the opportunity to come closer to realising their full potential.
In supporting vocationally inclined individuals, YSD awarded 50 students with bursaries worth RM2.33 million to pursue Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) under the Sime Darby Industrial Academy. Additionally, with the increasing importance of vocational skills to support the country’s economic plans, YSD is working towards awarding another 250 TVET bursaries in 2022.
Alongside the key support of financial assistance to these deserving scholars, YSD also places importance on guiding the students throughout their study period towards success upon graduation. All YSD Excellence scholars are given a wholesome learning experience under the YSD THRIVE Programme, which stands for Tailored Soft-Skills Training (T), High Potential Mentorship (H), Resilient Leadership (R), Industrial Internships at Sime Darby Companies (I), Volunteering initiatives (V) and E-learning Platform access (E).
Since its inception, YSD has awarded scholarships and bursaries worth more than RM314 million to more than 5,000 students from different segments of society particularly from middle to low-income families. Students who meet the criteria are encouraged to visit YSD’s website and apply for YSD’s scholarships and bursaries, which will be open for new applications in March 2022.