Posted: 26 Sep 2010 01:15 AM PDT
DAP National Deputy Chiarman and MP for Kepong Dr Tan Seng Giaw believes that setting up another foreign university campus such as Johns Hopkins University medical school and hospital in Malaysia provides another useful benchmark for all our universities.
Our 20 public universities including University of Malaya (UM), National University (UKM) and the Apex University, Science University (USM) have too much baggage to be able to breathe properly. How do we get rid of the baggage such as the lack of real meritocracy and political interference? UM is showing a sign to progress. We hope it can truly move forward. UKM has to work harder. Since USM has been conferred the Apex title, has it been able to shed its baggage?
Dr Tan comments on media report on the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak's statement that Johns Hopkins University will be setting up a medical school and hospital in Malaysia, providing facilities for a medical research hub in the region.
Najib was a graduate of Nottingham University, UK. Now, the university has a campus in Semenyih. We hope what Najib says about Johns Hopkins will come true.
There are many aspects of a good university. Being counted in international tables is one thing. Showing the the real achievements of academic excellence, research and practical applications in the genuine world is another. Harvard is top of the international tables. It shows excellence in many fields, not just key performance indices (KPIs)
For example, the President or Vice-Chancllor of Harvard is not a political appointee. The criteria are purely those for a world-class vice-chancellor. The US Democratic Party and Republican Party have no say in his or her appointment. Can all our universities appoint vice-chancellors strictly on non-political criteria?
I shall bring this matter up again in the Budget Session of the Dewan Rakyat.
Dr Tan Seng Giaw
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