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Petronas Strengthens Human Capital Development Through Educational Programmes

Last update: 10/12/2008
News Pic
Program Bakti Pendidikan Petronas (PBPP) focuses on the specific needs of underprivileged upper primary school children in the rural areas, who were borderline achievers in terms of academic performance. The children were given free tuition in English, Science and Mathematics by highly qualified and dedicated teachers. As a result, there was a marked improvement in their academic performance and social interactions. Some went on to become top students at their schools. Picture Courtesy of Petronas
By Jenny Lanong

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 10 (Bernama) -- Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) is one of the leading Malaysia's corporate bodies in active support and promotion of on-going government's educational and community programmes.

As a responsible corporate citizen Petronas has successfully initiated and propped various social, environmental and community projects, either on its own or in collaboration with non profit-oriented organisations.

Petronas, a member of Corporate Malaysia is certain that its direct participation in such activities will result positively in the Malaysian development of human capital.

Besides having its own education centre Petronas has established several vocational training centres to provide ongoing knowledge and skills enhancement programmes among the labour force and increase the level of expertise in the industry.

SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

Petronas Education Division vice president, Datuk Dr Rosti Saruwono believes that the corporation is on spot in shouldering the corporate social responsibility of instilling sense of awareness among members of the society, especially the younger generation on the importance education as the currency of a better future.

According to Dr Rosti, the awareness should not be confined to just education alone but must also include other equally important aspects like health, safety and issues concerning the environment.

"Ideally, such awareness should be inculcated during the formative years, and towards this end Petronas has undertaken initiatives to provide the right exposure to young and impressionable minds," he said in an interview with Bernama recently.

To date, Petronas has collaborated with the various government and non-government organizations and schools in organising community programmes such as Sahabat Pemadam Drug Prevention Programme for schoolchildren and youths, the 'Our World' Project to ensure that the younger generation are aware of the importance of conservation in safeguarding the environment, and the Petronas StreetSmart Programme to promote road safety among schoolchildren.

Under its Program Bakti Pendidikan Petronas (PBPP), which focuses on the specific educational needs of disadvantaged children nationwide, the corporation has adopted 3,000 students in 36 schools throughout the country.

Conducted in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, State Education Department and Parents-Teachers Associations, the PBPP offers free tuition classes in English, Science and Mathematics.

In addition, Petronas staff volunteers conduct fun-filled motivational sessions and character building activities to encourage the pupils to be more absorb in interaction and communication.

SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

These community programmes are structured to create awareness, spark interests and inspire students to strive for academic excellence.

Petronas will continue to conduct such programmes to drive home the point the importance of education in shaping our future, Dr Rosti said.

"Getting the right information and exposure will go a long way in helping students to determine what they would like to do when they grow up; and how to go about acquiring the qualifications necessary for the job that they want," he added.

This element of exposure is also indispensable in inculcating the sense of civic mindedness that goes with being a responsible citizen.

"Students who go through our programmes will have the added advantage of being inducted into the many aspects relating to the petroleum industry.

This interaction would hopefully provoke an interest in pursuing a field of studies relating to science and technology."

SUCCESS STORY

Dr Rosti singled out the PBPP, which was launched in 2002, as a prime example of Petronas community programmes success story.

Initially, the corporation adopted underprivileged Primary 4 to Primary 6 students in 15 schools in Terengganu.

Because of inadequacies either at home or in school, these students were borderline performers with regards to their academic achievements.

They were given free tuition classes in English, Science and Mathematics by highly qualified and dedicated teachers.

In addition, Petronas staff volunteers acting as facilitators supplemented these lessons with lively and interactive motivational sessions and character building activities designed to boost the pupils' self-confidence.

"As a result, there was a marked improvement in their academic performance and social interactions. Some eventually went on to become top students at their schools," Dr Rosti said.

At the higher level, Petronas is also involved in training and developing multi-disciplinary skills and competencies via vocational and educational institutions such as the Petronas Institute of Petroleum Technology (Instep), Petronas University of Technology (UTP) and the Malaysian Maritime Academy (Alam).

FUTURE PLANS

Realising the increasing importance of education and skill development and enhancement towards the development of the country, Petronas is committed on improving its educational and community programmes, Dr Rosti said.

"Correspondingly, Petronas will take proactive measures to form strategic alliances with various government and non-government agencies, with a view of fine-tuning and improving existing programmes to better benefit the people," he added.

Petronas will strive to provide the dynamics of fostering continuous life long learning and to enhance competencies, especially amongst the younger generation, so as to enable the capable and deserving to realise their dream, he said.

-- BERNAMA