Executive Education

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This week, I made my first trip to Malaysia as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Reading. Arriving on Sunday night, I have been engaged since in a busy round of visits and meetings and hearing and seeing first-hand the progress that University of Reading Malaysia is making.

I began by seeing our impressive facilities in downtown Johor Bahru where we are already offering executive education courses as well as English language programmes. The new facilities feel very much a part of University of Reading, with prominent images of the University all around the building.

Not surprisingly, one of the highlights of the week so far has been visiting EduCity where our campus will open in 2015. It’s in a prime location at the entrance to EduCity and, will, I am sure become a landmark building in the area.

UoRM plot at EduCity

University of Reading Malaysia plot at Iskandar Malaysia EduCity where building is to commence in early 2013

The rest of the facility is already taking shape with University of Newcastle offering medicine and University of Southampton just receiving their first engineering students. The student accommodation block is now open and the sports stadium should be completed by the end of the year.

I am delighted that there is considerable interest in the plans for University of Reading Malaysia in the region, and as part of my visit, I have been delighted to be interviewed by the New Straits Times, Star and Sin Chew Daily newspapers. I have also attended dinners in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur where I have met many influential figures from business and commerce, including University of Reading and Henley Business School graduates.

Sir David Bell with invited guests at formal dinner in Singapore

Sir David Bell with invited guests at formal dinner in Singapore

It has also been very useful to meet key contacts in the Ministry of Higher Education and the University of Malaya as we develop partnerships in Malaysian higher education.

Throughout my time in Malaysia, I have been very well supported by our enthusiastic project team. It was clear to me that they are held in high regard locally and are great ambassadors for the University of Reading.

My main impressions from the short visit to Malaysia and Singapore are that:-

There is a palpable sense of ambition surrounding higher education in the country. We are part of the expansion effort, as well as contributing to the enhanced status of HE in the country. I am delighted that we are already considered as having an important contribution to make in this regard.

Secondly, I have seen for myself the potential for Malaysia to become a great education hub. It is located in a region with a hunger for education and a huge potential market.

Thirdly, the University already has many friends here. I mentioned the alumni I met and it will be marvellous to be working with them in the future. Our team in Malaysia has also developed strong relationships with the High Commissions of both Malaysia and Singapore as well as in the British Council. It was good to hear the UK Universities Minister, David Willetts, talk so positively about our work in Malaysia at the Universities UK annual conference last week.

I look forward to my next visit and to hearing of further success as we approach an important milestone for the University, the full opening of University of Reading Malaysia.


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The University of Reading Malaysia (UoRM) has achieved a major milestone with the opening of its brand new teaching and office facilities in Johor Bahru, Malaysia in June 2012.

The premises are within the Menara Kotaraya building in central Johor Bahru and feature five teaching suites, equipped with audio-visual and smartboard technology.

Large classroom at University of Reading Malaysia

There is a large learning resource centre housing a 24-station PC lab which serves as both a dealing room (for ICMA Executive Education training on capital markets) and language laboratory. The 9,000 square foot space boasts a resource library and a cafeteria-social area as well as a reception and administration offices, for our burgeoning staff on site.

Cafe Area at University of Reading Malaysia

The facilities are also equipped with the latest internet and telephone services with Wi-Fi throughout and a touchdown space for recharging laptops. To support the new office, Mr Nandan Ramachandran, the first locally employed member of staff of UoRM, has been appointed as Office Manager.

Sir David Bell KCB, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Reading, said: “The University is exceedingly proud to be able to open our first teaching facilities in Malaysia. Our links with Malaysia go back many years and we are excited at the prospect of cementing these relationships through our new facilities and programmes in Johor Bahru. UoRM’s initial academic offering in Malaysia will provide excellent quality English language and business programmes, taught by faculty with extensive international experience, and delivered in the first-class facilities to be expected from one of the world’s top 1% of universities.”

This is the first phase of major investment in Malaysia by the University. In 2015, the University will open its main campus in the Iskandar Malaysia with the intention of delivering a wide range of degree programmes in business and law, pharmacy, chemistry and the built environment (applications are being prepared now for approval by the various governmental and professional bodies which are required to approve all our programmes offered on the campus).

Delivery of programmes at Kotaraya has already begun with the University’s Henley Business School providing programmes for business leaders and you can read more about Henley Business School Executive Education programme in Malaysia here.

Pre-sessional courses for students wishing to raise their English language and academic levels before starting a university degree course are also planned for Kotaraya along with a Foundation in Business programme. You can find out more about Programmes at University of Reading Malaysia here.

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Dr Millicent Danker, Founder and CEO of Perception Management and Associate Faculty of Henley Business School has been honoured by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR).

Dr Danker has been awarded a Fellowship by the CIPR in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the Institute as well as the wider public relations profession. FCIPR is the highest possible membership grade and therefore to be awarded a Fellowship is an exceptional achievement. She is believed to be the first Malaysian to be recognised in this way. To read a profile of Dr Danker, please visit http://www.reading.ac.uk/malaysia/about/alumni-profiles

Jane Wilson, CEO of the CIPR said, “The CIPR Fellowship is the most august group within the profession. Our Fellows hold invaluable experience of public relations, communications and business practice and are able to provide a unique insight into the profession and the issues facing communicators around the UK. CIPR Fellows help the Institute develop best practice standards and policies, sharing their experience and knowledge through contributing to the Institute’s working groups, panels and consultations. Congratulations to all those who have been awarded a Fellowship.”

Dr Danker completed her Doctorate in Business Administration at Henley Business School, University of Reading, and alternates between assignments in Kuala Lumpur and London. She leads an executive education course being offered by Henley Business School in Malaysia for the first time, Leadership for Stakeholder Management.

For more information on Executive Education in Malaysia or to apply for our programmes, please visit http://www.reading.ac.uk/malaysia


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Managers who want to get ahead in business will be able to benefit from some of the best executive education in the world, delivered in the heart of Malaysia, from April this year.

That’s the promise to prospective students of business courses at the University of Reading Malaysia and Henley Business School, which has launched its world-rated programmes in Johor Bahru and Kuala Lumpur.

The programmes in capital markets, real estate and planning and leadership and coaching will be delivered by the University of Reading’s renowned Henley Business School, in association with ICMA. One of the world’s leading business education providers, the Henley Business School programmes will be among the first to be delivered by the newly-formed University of Reading Malaysia.
Henley Business School was established by business, for business, and as the UK’s oldest business school, has over 60 years’ experience in developing managers. One of the world’s few business schools to hold triple-accredited status, Henley Business School is also ranked in the European top 20 business school for Executive Education, in Open and Custom programmes (FT European Business Schools ranking, 2011).
The new programmes were launched at high profile events in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, the latter hosted by the British High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Simon Featherstone and attended by business leaders, including Mr See Lian Ong, Global President of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, and graduate of the University of Reading.

Speaking at the launches, Professor John Board, Dean of Henley Business School, said: “Henley Business School and the University of Reading are globally renowned institutions and we have particularly strong historic relationships with Malaysia. We are delighted to have the opportunity to deliver our executive education programmes to help ambitious managers and forward-thinking organisations to get ahead.”

Mr See Lian Ong said: “The University of Reading is a world-class university and has always been close to my heart – I am proud to be one of its graduates and even more so that two of my three sons have followed my footsteps at this prestigious institution. The partnership between the University of Reading and Malaysia is one that brings the best of both worlds of my life together and it is a partnership that is certain to a successful one.”

The majority of the new business courses will be taught at the University of Reading Malaysia’s facility in Johor Bahru from late May 2012, with some programmes also offered in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.

The University of Reading Malaysia’s brand new campus in Iskandar is expected to be completed in September 2014, with an initial intake of 500 students. Enrolment will rise to 1,800 students by 2017, with long-term numbers thought to be around 2,000. Undergraduate and postgraduate degrees are being developed¹ to include programmes within real estate, construction, finance, law, chemistry and pharmacy. The new campus was formally launched in December in partnership with Education@Iskandar Sendirian Berhad (EISB in the presence of Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia.

More information at www.reading.ac.uk/malaysia or uor-malaysia@reading.ac.uk or +44 (0) 118-378-7370.


¹All award-bearing programmes are subject to accreditation by appropriate professional and regulatory bodies

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