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My Unforgettable Journey Studying Chinese Medicine at International Medical University

03 Nov 2018

Wong Pui Mun’s dream will never have been realised without the financial support from International Medical University (IMU). She was awarded the IMU Scholarship, which had helped to reduce her financial burden throughout her undergraduate studies, and started studying for her Chinese Medicine degree at the University in 2014. It. She shares about her journey here. After completing my high school education, I decided to join International Medical University (IMU) as a Chinese Medicine student and entered into another milestone in my life. The reason for me to choose Chinese Medicine as my degree is that I wish to help more people who are in need. Just as simple as that! Throughout the 4 years’ journey in pursuing my degree at IMU, I not only gained professional and useful knowledge about Chinese Medicine but also in other medical fields such as psychology, pharmacology, western medicine and etc. Knowledge is power, but knowledge without the support of practical skills and experience is useless. Hence, IMU Chinese Medicine programme offers supervised clinical practice in the fourth year which was the biggest challenge that I have ever faced throughout my whole duration of studies at the university. During this time, I faced uncountable times of failure in my clinical practice that had pulled me deep inside the swirl of depression and disappointment. However, the strong desire of achieving my wish in helping more people who are in need had soon ignited the fire in me and I decided to put in more effort and practice to overcome my failures and weaknesses. As a student, we should never let the fear of failing stop us from moving forward and achieving our dreams as failure only make us stronger. Failure may seem difficult and scary, but bear in mind that all these negativities are just temporary and once you are brave and tough enough to overcome it, a successful pathway is waiting ahead of you. I always believe that bad times make a good man and this quote always keeps me stronger and keeps me going in my journey. The moment I realised all my hard work paid off is when patients recovered after my treatment and the smile and thanks that appeared on their faces. I have never felt  such happiness and sense of achievement before. It inspires and ignites my passion in doing better and working harder to help more people. In addition, I would never be this successful and competent without the guidance of all the lecturers from Chinese Medicine. They are always helpful, responsible and patient in guiding us, encouraging us and nurturing us in becoming a competent physician of the future. Moreover, to improve my clinical skills, I had been working as a part-time clinical assistant at a Chinese Medicine Center in Sri Petaling while studying at IMU. It is always an advantage to be able to work in a Chinese Medicine clinic environment as I was able to learn more new knowledge, gained more valuable experience and applied the knowledge I have learnt. While working at the Chinese Medicine gynaecology specialist centre, the physician shared with me her valuable experiences and taught me some useful knowledge in diagnosing gynaecology diseases by feeling the pulse. Overall, it was a great working experience that have definitely enriched my skills and knowledge.

My dream will never have been realised without the financial support from IMU. I am honoured to be awarded the IMU scholarship – partial scholarship from IMU since first year of my degree. I come from a single parent family and thus financial problem becomes the biggest obstacle to enter university. However, IMU has given me a chance to pursue my dream by providing partial scholarship throughout the whole journey of my degree course. It helped to reduce my family’s financial burden and I was able to enjoy my university life with no worries. Other than financial support, as a scholar of IMU, I had opportunities to host events, workshops and activities that helped improve my communication skills and widen my network of friends. In return, I always did my best in my academic studies. Other than the scholar committee club, I also participated in other activities such as drawing and led the decoration team of Chinese Medicine Week 2015. In sports, I held the position of Vice President and Secretary of the IMU Darts Club for the year 2016/17. By participating in these activities, I met new friends from other courses, as well as improved my leadership, communication and time management skills.

Last but not least, true friendship multiplies the good in life. One of the best and unforgettable memories in my university life is the time I spent with my CM114 classmates. We have been through all obstacles and challenges together by helping and supporting each other unconditionally. There is not a lonely moment throughout the journey at IMU as all of us always worked hard together to achieve the same goal. We work hard but we never forgot to play hard. They are all very good friends and good listeners that I can never ask for more and I always feel safe in expressing my deepest thoughts to them. Time spent with them is always full of laughter and happiness. Our friendship is a gift and I will always treasure with all my heart.

Lastly, I had completed my undergraduate studies with lots of good, precious and unforgettable memories with IMU. It is time for me to embark on another milestone in my life by pursuing postgraduate studies in China. I am lucky and honoured to be awarded a China government scholarship to continue my Master in Chinese Medicine Dermatology at Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine. By studying this, I wish to widen my experience and strengthen my skills in diagnosing and treating skin diseases by exploring the integration of both Chinese and Western medicines in Chinese hospitals. This will definitely help to equip me with more useful knowledge, skills and experiences. In addition, the journey in China will help me realise my dreams to help more people in the future especially in the area of skin diseases and to promote the development of Chinese Medicine dermatology in Malaysia.

Lastly, I will like to thank Prof Winnie Chee (Dean, School of Health Sciences) and Prof Lin Xun (Previous Head of Department, IMU Chinese medicine, Dean of International Education College in SHUTCM) for the recommendation letters of China Government Scholarship (CGS) and helping me to get the full scholarship to continue postgraduate study.

Written by Wong Pui Mun (CM114).

On 3 November 2018, Wong Pui Mun graduated with a First Class Honours from the Bachelor of Science (Hons) Chinese Medicine programme and is one of the recipient of the Tun Zahir Merit Award. This award is given to a graduating student who has shown outstanding academic excellence in his/her degree programmes. Related article: IMU Graduates Celebrated a Milestone at the University’s Convocation Ceremony 2018

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