The Aflame Student Award was created by International Medical University (IMU) to honour a graduating student from any one of the IMU programmes. The aim of the award is to emphasise, reinforce and enhance the importance of humane principles practices among students of healthcare school. The inaugural Aflame Student Award was conferred in 2012.
Named ‘Aflame’ as it signifies a fiery passion that encompasses doing good for humanity. The flames of gold reflect the heart of the doer whose pursuits ensure all humans receive compassion. Aflame is also a metaphoric translation of our President, Tan Sri Abu Bakar’s name, and was chosen to honour him.
The recipient of the Aflame Student Award will receive a cash prize of RM1,000 and is given the opportunity to nominate a beneficiary to receive a donation of RM5,000. The awards ceremony is held during University Day in IMU and the award recipient is invited to speak about the importance of humane principles.
Nomination & Selection Process
Aflame Student Award Judges 2021
Prof Toh Chooi Gait
Pro Vice-Chancellor, Engagement and Industrial Partnership
Professor Toh Chooi Gait is the founding Dean of Dentistry and Professor of Restorative Dentistry at the International Medical University in Kuala Lumpur. Prior to joining the International Medical University, she was a professor in the Faculty of Dentistry, University of Malaya and had served in various capacities including Deputy Dean and Head of Department of Conservative Dentistry.
She was the President of the South East Asian Association for Dental Education (2000-2002), President of the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) South East Asian Division (1977 – 1999), Founding President of Malaysian Section of IADR (SEA Division) (2000-2002), Founding Council Member of the Malaysian Academy of Aesthetic Dentistry (2004-2008) and member of Board of Directors, International Federation of Dental Educators and Associations (2007 – 2009).
She is a member of the editorial boards of Operative Dentistry, the European Journal for Dental Education and had served as a reviewer for other local and regional journals including Malaysian Dental Journal and Asian Journal of Aesthetic Dentistry. She is a member of various governmental technical committees including the National Committee for Oral Health Manpower Development, Task Force 2 on Dental Education, Qualifications Evaluation Committee and Specialist Sub-Committee on Restorative Dentistry.
YBhg Datuk Munirah Abdul Hamid
Founder of Pertiwi Soup Kitchen
YBhg Datuk Munirah is the founder of Pertiwi Soup Kitchen, which was started together with her old friends from boarding school and launched in 2010. Her first encounter in feeding the poor was when she was only 5 years old, following her mother to feed the poor in Alor Setar. She has also been a volunteer with Pertubuhan Tindakan Wanita Islam (PERTIWI) ever since it was established in 1967.
Datuk Munirah is a consummate entrepreneur who enjoys nurturing businesses in exciting new areas. She first ventured into the business world in 1973 after she was introduced to it by her older siblings. In 1977, Munirah together with her husband, Robert George Hercus, set up their first IT company which initially focused on accounts and payroll systems for financial institutions. Later, the company was instrumental in the design and development of Touch ‘n Go, a pioneer automatic toll payment system which was implemented throughout Malaysia.
She is also the co-founder of the Malaysian Genomics Resource Centre Berhad and Neuramatix group of companies. Despite having achieved much as a corporate leader in the sciences, she never fails to make time to help the homeless— providing them with food and medical supplies four nights a week through her NGO, Pertiwi Soup Kitchen.
Alumna, IMU Pharmacy
Michele Fernandez graduated from International Medical University (IMU) with a Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) in 2017. She is currently pursuing her Master in Pharmacy (Philosophy) at Taylor’s University. She believes that helping those less fortunate is a responsibility. As such, during her tenure at IMU she had participated in various volunteer programmes through IMU Cares.
Michele continued to participate in similar projects after graduating. Given her experience in healthcare, in 2017 Michele volunteered at the Registrar at Empowered Colorectal Cancer Awareness, a government clinic raising awareness about colorectal cancer and encouraging people to get tested. From 2016 to 2017, she also volunteered at Liter of Light Malaysia, helping build solar powered lights for the indigenous population living in Pahang. With her experience in volunteering and community outreach, from 2018 to 2019, Michele served as a committee member of the United Nations Association Malaysia (Youth) under the community outreach and collaborations division.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Michele observed that children from underprivileged communities were struggling with e-learning and were unable to catch up to their peers. She has since been providing free tutoring and mentorship to select children from these communities. She continues to strive to do her part in society and plans to continue to do so in the future.
Aflame Student Award 2021 Winner
During the E-University Day which was virtually held on 26 March 2021, Nur Nabila binti Nasharuddin (ME1/16) was awarded the Aflame Student Award. This award is an award to honour IMU‘s graduating students who have demonstrated exceptional endeavours in the practice of healthcare and community service. Despite the pandemic and restrictions faced in year 2020, Nabila had persevered with what she believed in. She continued to reach out to empower underprivilege students to pursue tertiary education via the ProjectEd Malaysia initiatives. Aside from this, she also volunteers in on-ground activities involving giving out food to the homeless in Chow Kit area and advocating health awareness through the Kampung Orang Asli Hulu Kemensah and Adolescent’s Health Awareness Campaign.
Nur Nabila binti Nasharuddin
"Echoing Winston Churchill’s thought, we indeed make a life by what we give, and community work benefits not only the community or the beneficiaries but the volunteers as well. Finding your genuine passion and fighting for it allows us to be a better version of ourselves, builds our character, and perhaps, make the world a little better for everyone, including you. We might not be wealthy, strong, or free enough to help everyone, but with a bit of creativity, each one of us has something to offer, and no act of kindness is too small to make a difference."
About the Winner
“Nelson Mandela once said that education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”. This quote has made Nur Nabila realized that education has always empowered her and gives her the strength to be the best version of herself. Her passion to the education has brought her to ProjectEd, an organization that strives for equity in tertiary education. A part of that, she also actively involved in numerous community engagement; namely Yayasan Salam Chow Kit, outreach programmes to the Kampung Orang Asli Hulu Kemensah, Adolescent’s Health Awareness Campaign in schools, and others. Nur Nabila graduated with medical degree in International Medical University.
Beneficiary of Donation