- Not often you get the chance to attend a 'Foundation Day' since it seldom comes around and if it does you may not be around or ever get an invitation. So on Sunday 15 April 2012 it was a golden opportunity to be invited to one. It was at the Universiti Utara Malaysia Campus. in Sintok .The University was celebration its anniversary. Started in 1983, with an instruction to get the university rolling within SIX months from the go ahead sign, the 6th University saw its first intake of 265 students in April 1984 at its initial (temporary campus) at Tanah Merah near Jitra. ( Then there were only Universiti Malaya, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Universiti Sains and Universiti Teknologi Mara). Kedah got its tertiary campus then ahead of other states in Malaysia excepting Penang, Selangor and Johore. Now functioning at its main campus in Sintok near the Malaysia Thai border it boasts an enrollment of 30,000 + students , undergraduates and post graduates in various management disciplines. A university campus with its extensive planning and development necessarily bring about greater opening for the area and the community. This has been proved at all the localities where tertiary institutions have taken roots.
Being a member of the original task force that started the project and later a member of the University administrative staff for the initial ten years, it was a memorable come home and to see the growth and development. It was also appropriate that the main guest for the occasion was the task-master who proposed and mastered the planning of the university itself i.e the then Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
The university with its infrastructures and innovations would easily put up a fine program and that day it rises to the occasion.
The golden opportunity to start a university from its initial, devoid of anything but only the direction to begin one is an opportunity that comes only once. Being there then to take the task with Almarhum Dato Hamid Ayob who was the the Director of Education Kedah was a reward indeed opening the Pandora box of magics.
The grand ceremony of the Foundation Day to remember the past 28 years of the University's expansion is observed with the invitation to its 'founder' to give a lecture and undoubtedly expressed his gladness to see its growth in all directions. Indeed we thanked all that have initially contributed to its early beginning and continued growth.
We continue to learn. As mush as it is a normal scene when the guest walks to the seat, here we notice the courtesy and care given by a lady to another. She held her hands in support as the security officer too follows.
The large attendance of guests, staff and students added to the atmosphere and UUM had the grand hall since its initial beginning, including all the other infrastructures.
No you don' strain your eyesight and neither your ears since technologies make seeing and hearing easier and clearer. On occasion like this we observe the good and dismissing the bad if any.
It was good to meet former staff members who are still in service. With the age extension those who would have been pensioned are still in office. Yes on such a visit you do remember the other colleagues who have been there but unfortunately not around anymore.
But more significantly the opportunity to welcome my former teacher / lecturer and his wife at our home the following day was the highlight of the week. Dato Baharuddin Marji was also an alumni of Kirkby College Liverpool and later returned to the College to become its Malay lecturer. Their official visit to Perlis to officiate in the 'Hafaz al Quran' function, gave us the opportunity to receive them as our guest. Dato Baharuddin' s service to the community and the alumni at his golden years is a source of pride and exemplary.
Our guests with our 'alumni' members who made the trip to Brunei in September 2011