PETALING JAYA, 25 APRIL – Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN) had once again been crowned the champion for the 15th National Mandarin Debate Championship defeating Multimedia University (MMU) at the final stage, carrying home a trophy and RM5000.00 cash prize.

The 10-students team from UNITEN had to endure the challenge of facing hundreds of spectators from other 24 public and private Malaysian universities during the event hosted by Universiti Malaya which was held in Dewan Sivik, Petaling Jaya.

“Every team have given their best and looked forward to bring home the title as the champion will be representing Malaysia for the World Mandarin Debate Championship in November,” said Chen Men Ein, a 19-year old College of Engineering student from UNITEN who was also the best speaker in the final stage.

The topics ranging from politics to economics were debated entirely in Mandarin, with the final topic being “The degradation of values and policies are the most critical challenges faced in the current state of Malaysia”.

Fruitful 2-years of preparation

“For the past 2 years we have joined many competitions in Malaysia and Singapore and from each, we managed to at least learn something from other competitors to improve ourselves,” said Yau Jia Min, a 20 year-old College of Computer Science and IT student from UNITEN.

“It was indeed a challenge whenever we go out to compete as we had to fund our own preparation in terms of buying reference books, attending courses to sharpen our skills and subscribing journals and articles, but with the help from the alumni and support from UNITEN management and lecturers, we made it through,” added her again.

Notable involvement of alumni

With a very limited resource, the team had also make use of whatever time they had to train with the team alumni whom some had sacrificed their family time just to train the team after working hours.

“This is one of the ways we can give back to the university,” said Serene, a 2011 UNITEN graduate whom also had done several debate coaching in her alma mater in Sekolah Menengah Chung Hua, Port Dickson. “This achievement is important in giving UNITEN the outreach it deserves,” added her again.

Soft skill development at the ‘National Energy University’

This achievement is critical in putting the university name at a greater height especially as UNITEN had offered a few new courses, namely Entrepreneurship and Venture Management (EVM), Cyber Security and Graphic Management.

“We still highlight the importance of soft skills developments by joining competitions like this”, said Ng Kaiding, another 19-year old team member who is currently pursuing his Foundation in Mechanical Engineering in UNITEN. “And this is not the end of it,” added him enthusiastically.

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