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My Transformative Journey as an IMU Scholar

24 Nov 2023

While pursuing my undergraduate studies in pharmacy at IMU, I was delighted to be selected as one of the IMU scholars. In fact, the sponsor of this scholarship not only significantly alleviated my parents’ financial burden but also encouraged me to participate in various activities, fostering my development into a well-rounded individual.

 

Before accepting this scholarship, I had always believed that a student should prioritise on studying to acquire knowledge that is beneficial for the profession or career in the future. However, I realized that it was a totally wrong mindset at the end of my four years of being an IMU scholar. Indeed, academic result is not the only criteria to determine the success of a person. Instead, one should also acquire good interpersonal skills, communication skills, and a good attitude in working or studying so as to gain respect from others.

 

Being an IMU scholar, it was my responsibility to join as a participant or member of an organising committee of at least 1 IMU event per year.

World Health Festival 2020

One of the events that I joined was the World Health Festival 2020. I was involved as the Vice President of the organising committee and it was indeed my first event in IMU, kicking the start of my journey as an IMU scholar. At first, I felt stressed managing my time, as I needed to juggle between my studies and organizing the event simultaneously. Additionally, I encountered various challenges during the event, including disagreements with others’ opinions and the necessity to re-plan the event due to the enforcement of the Movement Control Order (MCO) as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Nevertheless, we ultimately managed to organise the event successfully in a virtual format with the cooperation, determination of all the organising committee members. Although it could be exhausting to organise such an event, however, it had indirectly trained me to be a more disciplined and organised person. In addition, I had the opportunity to make friends with students from different courses, cohorts or background, realized the importance of tolerance and respect each other’s opinion while organising an event. These valuable skills indeed can’t be learned in my study or lecture notes, but can only be obtained by participating in various events.

FiS Forum

Another event that I joined when I was a scholar was the Foundation in Science (FiS) Forum. I participated as the Head of Public Relations (PR) in organising a forum for IMU FiS students. This event aimed to share learning experiences from each undergraduate program at IMU with our juniors, along with some study tips. By being  the Head of PR, I learned how to liaise with others, how to send a proper invitation email, and had the chance to observe how to deliver a sharing session formally and professionally, as presented by representatives from the different courses. Besides as an organising committee member, I was, fortunately, invited as a speaker to share with FiS juniors about the IMU Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm) programme during my Semester 6. It was indeed another new experience in which I had the opportunity to share my thoughts about IMU BPharm and answer their queries.

Pharmacy Week

Last but not least, my last event in IMU was the IMU Pharmacy Week 2022. Unlike the other events, this was my first physical event in IMU and it was my first time being a project leader. Moreover, this was an event specifically related to my profession as a pharmacy student. It was undeniably challenging to lead the team in organising a major event at IMU, especially given the significant hurdle of lacking experience in coordinating physical events on campus.

Due to the two-year enforcement of the Movement Control Order (MCO), I had no reference points and fewer opportunities to observe how other clubs and societies organised physical events.

Luckily, all the circumstances were eventually solved and the event ran smoothly with the help of a group of dedicated organising committee members. We motivated each other, faced and solved problems together, and practiced good teamwork. Besides the committee’s efforts, this event could not have been a success without the advice from the IMU Pharmacy Students’ Association (IPSA) advisor and lecturer, Kow Chia Siang.

He was always there to provide us with guidance, motivation and help. Ultimately, this event achieved a great success with a participation rate of about 400 students, which was higher than the expected 250 students.

In addition, we also managed to organise two webinars related to the pharmacy profession, with one of the talks delivered by UK pharmacists. In short, I realised the importance of teamwork by becoming the leader of this event. One wouldn’t be able to achieve success without the support and respect of the team. This would be my lifetime memory not only because of the skills that I have learned in this project, but because it marked the end of my journey as an IMU scholar and as a pharmacy student.

 

In short, I am grateful for the opportunity to be an IMU Scholar. This scholarship program has helped me understand the significance of work-life balance, the importance of time management, and has contributed to the enhancement of my interpersonal, communication, and problem-solving skills — all of which are valuable assets for a lifetime.

 

Once again, I would like to sincerely thank IMU for giving me the opportunity to be a scholar. The journey as an IMU scholar was fun, meaningful and memorable.

 

Written by IMU Scholar, Ng Man Xin, BP119

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