Sunday, August 23, 2015

Part 1 : TPM Scholarship

Assalamualaikum & hello! Photobucket

As promised, this post is for those who wish to secure a scholarship to further their studies and be an academician afterwards. I'll try to summarize this as I'm so lazy loh. For this post, I'm gonna use mixed language okay? Please don't bash me for using bahasa rojak teehee

Some info about this scholarship :
  • It's called Biasiswa Tenaga Pengajar Muda (TPM) UITM
  • Open for Bumiputera 
  • Not necessarily for UITM students only. Student dari universiti lain pun boleh apply ye
  • It's a full sponsorship (they cover your tuition fees and you get monthly allowances)
  • Basically for postgraduate studies only (Masters & PHD level)  
  • You can choose your mode of study for Masters; coursework or research
  • Field of study depends on the list that UITM provides on their TPM advertisement every year

Pros Photobucket
  • You already secured a job as UITM's lecturer if you get this scholarship
  • You can choose to study anywhere you want, not necessarily UITM (local & overseas)
  • Monthly allowance of RM2,700 (for Masters at local unis) plus other allowances like housing allowance, book allowance, stationary allowance, thesis allowance, etc. 

Cons Photobucket
  • 7 years bonded with UITM as a lecturer upon completion of your studies. Boleh tahan lama juga, but you know, nothing comes easy these days.
  • Compensation of RM100k minimum if you breach the contract (*scary)
  • You could be located at any UITM branches that offer the subject you'll be teaching

What They Need/ Your Preparation

  • Mock teaching during the interview (you have to act as though you're teaching in class)
  • It's better if you already secured a place of study (but this wasn't helpful in my case)
  • You need to sit for IELTS, no matter if you're studying locally or abroad. Starting from 2016, I was told that the requirement would be at least an overall band of 6.5 for both local & abroad.
  • If you're studying abroad, there are a lot more procedures, like you're gonna have to attend BTN, etc.
  • For research students, lebih bagus kalau dah prepare research proposal untuk menunjukkan kesungguhan

So I stumbled across the advertisement of this scholarship masa zaman menganggur. I've always been interested to be a lecturer, so I found this scholarship pretty attractive. Like, they sponsor everything during your studies and you get to be a lecturer after finishing your studies (you already secured a place at this point, so you don't need to worry about finding a university that wants to hire you). But of course, you must be willing to be located anywhere (UITM banyak cawangan, anda boleh dihantar ke mana saja depending on your field). So my advice is tanamkan niat untuk menyumbang ilmu kepada bangsa, insyaAllah hati akan redha (gitew).

Anyway, my field of studies was listed and I thought there was no harm in trying, so I submitted my online application & posted out all the required documents. And I waited. A day before my graduation, I received an email from UITM asking me to come to an interview in 4 days. So back from Kelantan, I started to find materials for my mock teaching and prepared myself. Untuk interview, kita kena prepare slide untuk mock teaching berkenaan course yang kita apply. Tak perlu panjang berjela, simplify guna points je. I did mine around 10 slides. After mock teaching baru anda ditemuduga oleh panel.

So on the interview day, ramai juga yang datang for my faculty (Business & Management). But based on the list of names provided, there were only 12 shortlisted candidates for my field including myself. I was the 2nd person to be interviewed (they followed alphabetical order). Nervous tu takyah cakap lah kan. But somehow I was able to calm myself down cause I really wanted to get it over with. Masuk bilik interview, there were 5 panels, if I remember correctly. Only 1 male interviewer (who is apparently the faculty's deputy dean) and the rest are females (1 of them is the head of department). I started with the mock teaching. I imagined as if the panels were my students and I made sure I interacted with them well. The key here is to speak clearly. They stopped me after only 3 minutes. Penat kita prepare untuk 7 minit, terpaksa la cut it short. Hmm takpe sis sabar. 

Next, the interview. Let me just say, kena kentalkan semangat & prepare mentally  untuk sesi interview. In my case, semua soalan interview yang I dah prepare memang 1 pun tak ditanya. Ada ke patut? Hmm sis sabar lagi. Instead, they asked me spontaneous questions. They provoked me, a lot. This is normal for most scholarship interview I guess. I didn't graduate from UITM in case you don't know. I graduated from another university. They asked me a lot about how the 2 universities differ, and blablabla. They even said my university has failed. I think the main reason is that they want to see how we bring ourselves when we're being pressured, how we answer questions when we're being provoked, stuffs like that. So just try to be calm, be positive, and don't be afraid to disagree if you think you've got a point. They might appreciate smart arguments as it shows you have your own stand. Just don't go overboard. Kalau tunjuk macam bijak sangat pun diorang akan ingat you berlagak pula. If you may, argue in a humble way.

After the interview, I didn't think I did well. Like, I could give better answers if I were given more time to think. But  after about 2 months, the result came out and Alhamdulillah, I got it. For my course, only 2 were chosen (another 1 is a male candidate). But probably because of the faculty's budget, they would only allow local studies. 

I was pretty sad though for not being able to realize my dreams to further my studies abroad. Mesti lah sedih. I've been working on it since my final semester lagi. By the time I graduated, I've already secured a place at few universities that I've applied to. It was really frustrating to turn down the offers and watched my effort went down the drains. But I accepted the fact that I can't have it all. Maybe He knows I'm not ready to  study abroad, and I trust Him completely. And besides, studying locally means I get to be close with family, and that's a good thing right? Mana tahu ada rezeki study luar untuk PHD maybe? Amiinn, InsyaAllah. But even now, it's hard to get a scholarship that will send you abroad, it's a sad truth. There's hardly any scholarships (or convertible loan) that send students abroad anymore. The thought of loaning hundreds of thousand and paying back every penny with interest is just ridiculous. I hope this changes soon :(

Okay I get pretty tired of typing. Maybe I'll come up with another post about my experience. Maybe, kalau rajin. But anyway, if you have anything to ask regarding TPM, feel free to drop your comments below. I'll try to answer mana yang boleh :)

Have a good day! Photobucket


Anonymous said...

Hi, sy nak tnye sikit. Elaun utk tpm ni
d'tanggung oleh gov or uitm sbnarnye?
brape lama proses dari hantar p'mohonan
sampai dpt tahu result dari uitm?
susah x proses utk dpt?

Lina Nadia said...

Hi! Elaun sara hidup basically from dua2 tu. UITM bagi rm1800/month
and KPM bagi rm900/month. Lain2 elaun macam elaun perkakas, penempatan
semua tu pulak KPM yg tanggung.
Kalau ikut pengalaman saya, submit borang dalam bulan 10, bulan 12 interview.
Then dapat result dalam bulan 2 tak silap :)

just naim said...

Assalam.. Kat mana nak mohon yer TPM NIE?