Webinar: Securing Scholarship & High School Hacks
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On 2nd October 2022, Cemerlang hosted a webinar featuring three fresh Kolej Yayasan Saad graduates who recently secured multiple coveted scholarships.
In this webinar, the trio discusses their amazing tips on how they obtained scholarships and how to stand out in an interview. The KYSERs also encouraged students to pursue excellence even after secondary school to ensure continuous personal growth into adulthood.
Meet the Speakers
Caelystar Valentina Ng May Zher
Caelystar is currently a Shell scholar at Kolej Yayasan UEM. Back in Kolej Yayasan Saad (KYS), she represented her high school for debate and has won multiple accolades in debating championships including overall best speaker in the Asia Scholastic Debating Championship in 2021. Outside of school, she is a member of the Project ID Student Outreach Team. She has also attended interviews with Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), Yayasan UEM, Petronas, JPA, Yayasan Khazanah, and Taylors University Community Scholarship.
Munir Zahrin bin Mustamir
The Sime Darby scholar is currently pursuing his A Levels at Kolej Tuanku Ja’afar (KTJ). In KYS, Munir was actively involved in rugby and achieved first runner-up in the 2020 Rugby MSSNM championship with his team. On top of that, he won first place in the Celcom Young Digital Innovators Programme Competition for software track. He has also attended interviews with MARA, JPA, and BNM.
Qistina Afiqah binti Shaibi
Qistina was awarded the Yayasan Khazanah Scholarship this year and is now furthering her studies at Kolej Yayasan UEM. Alongside her stellar academic achievements, she became a silver medalist in the Maths E-Stream Waves Genius Board Game Competition. Apart from that, the former Deputy Head Girl 2 was ranked second in an Innovation Competition for Women’s Scouts Jamboree in 2019. She has also attended interviews with BNM, Petronas, JPA, and MARA.
Speakers’ Current Courses
Munir shares with us that his interest in data science actually stemmed from high school. He was not only interested in math but also actively took part in coding competitions.
Caelystar on the other hand wanted to be a biochemist during high school. Thanks to scholarship offers, she pivoted into chemical engineering instead.
Qistina was very unsure in what she wanted to do in high school but she found an amazing interest in economics in upper form and now she successfully picked economy as her course of choice
Munir tells us all we can do is to just focus in class. He tells us that we can take the extra mile by taking notes and revising the subject at the end of the day, but focusing in class is in itself the most efficient.
Caelystar share with us that we have to learn how to avoid burnout. She tells us to learn how to pace ourselves and we need to ensure we do not push ourselves too much.
Qistina believes that we should not be afraid to constantly reach out to teachers and friends to get a deeper understanding towards a certain topic
Creating a personal statement
Qistina shared with us that we should realize who we are and our own personality. Do not focus too much on the positive things in life, but also on the hardships and setbacks that you have faced. We also need to do research on our course and start writing immediately to avoid procrastination
Caelystar also says we need to have good time management as we will find ourselves very busy and it is crucial to make time to write our essay. She also tells us it is best to do some soul-searching and to take a step back and assess ourselves before a writing an essay.
Munir tells us to not recreate reality in our personal statements as we the assessors will know if we are lying or not. Munir also tells us to get our essays proofread as a second opinion will really help in improving the quality of our essay.
Acing the Interview
Caelystar shares with us how to tackle the questions in a case study. She tells us to focus on communication with the other applicants and tells us that the aim of a case study is to see how well we work under pressure. We also learn that there are two types of case studies which are general and business-type case study.
Qistina adds that we can use numbers during your presentation of a case study. This suggests the use of statistics or percentages to support our choice. We should avoid from being negative and sounding condescending towards other applicants as that can reflect badly on us.
Munir gives us the entire floor plan by telling us that we need to try to be as creative as possible when answering the questions. We need to be able to think out of the box in order to stand out amongst the other applicants.
Caelystar tells us that we should never be arrogant in the interview. She tells us to know how to sell ourselves and appreciate our experiences in our life. When sharing our experiences, she tells us to focus on ourselves and highlight on our impact and contributions.
Munir and Qistina tell us the unexpected questions that may be asked. They suggest us to take these questions seriously and to always keep instructions in mind.
Sleep and Time Management
We also received tips on time management before big examinations. Qistina shared with us that she always ensures she receives enough rest. The panellists agree that sleep should be prioritised to ensure productivity during the day.
A special feature by KYSER Azeem Abu Bakar reminded students that though scholarships can help boost scholars towards reaching their goals, just striving to attain scholarships isn’t everything. In the end, success depends on one’s continuous effort. Thus, students should always strive to improve themselves and benefit from every opportunity that comes their way.